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Reuben's Deli, West Hartford

  • j

DW and I were out shopping yesterday in West Hartford and decided to try the new deli, Reuben's, that just opened last week on LaSalle Road in West Hartford Center. The place is small and tables close together like a New York deli and we had to wait about 30 minutes for a table (like New York). We both ordered the matzo ball soup. My wife ordered tongue sandwich and I half of the corned beef. I am not sure why but they would not allow her to order half a tongue sandwich so she ordered a whole one. The waitress was unsure if they had tongue so my wife said if not to just make it corned beef.

They brought out a small bowl of half sour pickles which my wife enjoyed a lot even though she prefers sour. After waiting about 15 minutes or so the waitress came back and said they were out of the matzo ball soup. She then strongly suggested chicken noodle so we agreed. We waited another 10 minutes and the soup arrived. It was good (not as good as my wifes) but we were disappointed because we really wanted to try the matzo ball soup. As we ate we heard a waiter tell the next table that the matzo ball soup would be ready in a few minutes.

A couple of minutes later our sandwiches came out so we had to hurry and finish our soup to get to the sandwiches before they got cold. They were out of tongue so they brought my wife corned beef. It would have been nice if they had told my wife for sure that they were out of tongue. The sandwiches were huge. My half was enough for me and I am a big eater. My wife ate about a quarter of hers and then just ate the meat. The corned beef was great. Very lean but a little bit too salty. The cole slaw they served with it was excellent.

We over heard the waitress tell the next table that they were out of chopped liver. A Jewish deli running out of chopped liver and matzo ball soup by 1:00 PM on a Sunday afternoon? We were generally pleased with what we had and despite the problems (which I think they will work out in time) we enjoyed the meal. given that there are no decent Jewish deli's in the Hartford area I think that they will do well. It certainly was crowded and people seemd to enjoy what they were eating. I am anxious to go back in a week or two and try the matzo ball soup and chopped liver. Jay

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  1. Damn, wish I still worked in West Hartford center. Breakfast all day? Potato pancakes? Yes, yes!

    1. Went to Reuben's on Sunday afternoon, about 2:00. I stood in line for about 10 minutes before I could even get to the counter to order. Not because the line was so long, but because they were so frazzled trying to get orders out, they couldn't even take orders for people waiting. There was no direction as to where to stand to order or who was waiting for food, so I waited around and finally left without even trying.
      Since I was seriously craving some matzo ball soup, I decided to give them a second chance and went back around 6:00. Again, waited with no direction as to what to do next, until I finally got the counter girl's attention. She was not very pleasant, nor was she very knowledgeable. I ordered a 1/2 corned beef lean with swiss on rye, and a small matzo ball soup. Now I really like salt... on everything (pizza, burgers, vegetables, etc.). But both my sandwich and soup were SO salty, I could barely eat them. I know that new restaurants have a lot of kinks to work out, so I will chalk the chaotic ordering/waiting up to the new opening. However, the food should be ready to go and taste good. And I'm afraid that my first experience at Reuben's was not worth the $16.

      5 Replies
      1. re: linzerbeth44

        $16??? I know the corned beef sandwich I had was about $8 and I thought the soup was $4. How did it get to be up to $16? Good deli is not cheap but if it was good, it is worth it. Unfortunately there aren't any good deli's in the Hartford area (don't say Rein's is good). This appears to be the best so far. Give them a bit of time to be organized. Jay

        1. re: JayCT

          Got a bottle of water too. Plus tax?

          I will definitely try them again but I will stay away from the corned beef and try something different. I love knishes, so I'm eager to give them a shot there.

        2. re: linzerbeth44

          Hi,

          Sorry, but I do think that Rein's is good. There are sometimes long lines but they move fast. They've never been out of matzoh ball soup or chopped liver.
          I haven't been to Reuben's yet and am sorry to hear negative comments but hope that is just opening jitters and things will get better.

          Looking forward to visiting and seeing for myself.

          1. re: davidmb

            Reins is to a real deal Deli as Dominos is to real deal pizza. They just closed down in West Springfield because they're just not good. Do yourself a favor and take a pilgrimage to Katz Deli in Manhattan. Thats the top of the mountain, my friend.

            1. re: foodwallguy

              The West Springfield one was SOOoooo Baaaaaad. Talk about poor service and being out of everything...

        3. When I first moved to West Hartford 30 years ago, I asked a passerby in the center of town if he knew the nearest place where I could get a good pastrami sandwich. He replied "New York City." Now there is Reuben's Deli. It is not as good as Katz's in lower Manhattan, but it did satisfy my craving. The pastrami was juicy and warm. It did not have the big NY pastrami flavor, but it was pretty good.

          1. The original comment has been removed
            1. So, I gave it a second shot. Went back yesterday around 11:00 am, beating the lunchtime rush. There was one person ahead of me in line. I ordered a turkey sandwich with bacon and provolone cheese, while my boyfriend ordered a corned beef reuben with fries. So far, so good. Order took about 10 minutes to make (and cost $25.00). We began to leave and the counter guy called us back because we were missing the fries... great catch we thought, so we then left. Got home to eat and guess what... NO REUBEN in the bag, and no bacon on the turkey sandwich (but it had mayo which i did NOT order). Went back and it was extremely busy. Had to wait 10 minutes to even get to the counter to get the order fixed. Waited another 10 minutes for them to remake the sandwich and make a reuben. And then they didn't even replace the fries, so we had cold soggy fries (and a VERY small order for what they charge). Reuben's really needs to get it down. They have zero organization behind the counter. The person taking orders should not be the same person bagging them. There should be a separate expediter putting orders in bags and making sure the orders are complete. And when an order comes back in because it's wrong, you do everything in your power to make sure it is right and enjoyable the second time. The food tasted better this time (although boyfriend agreed that the corned beef was too salty and the fries were cold and soggy), but they really need to get the issues worked out.

              1 Reply
              1. re: linzerbeth44

                That why professional critics give a place a few months before doing a review. Every new restaurant needs time to get their act together, and I don't think it's very fair to judge them before they hit their stride.