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Katz's Deli vs. Carnegie Deli

Any opinions about one versus the other?

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Carnegie Deli
854 7th Ave, New York, NY 10019

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  1. Carnegie was better than Katz's until Leo of the Carnegie died around 1987.

    Katz's has been vastly better than Carnegie ever since.

    So, unless you have access to a Wayback Machine, Katz's.

    1. katz's deli has gotten out of control over the last 2 years...with the tourists, with the crowds of newcomers who dont know how they operate, with the smaller sandwiches...that i just stopped going.

      now i get my pastrami at mile end in brooklyn.

      i like carnegie deli but ive only eaten it from delivery to my office. ive eaten it 10-15x and the woody allen sandwich is a classic. its classic ny deli...i have no issue with it. but ive never sat inside.

      8 Replies
      1. re: sam1

        The sandwiches are not any smaller today then they were 15 years ago.

        1. re: sam1

          Well, sam1, you make it sound as though Carnegie doesn't get any tourist traffic. lol

          We recently went to Katz's late on a Sunday morning, and there were no lines. The pastrami is consistently superb, and I've seen no diminution whatsoever in the size of the sandwich. Photos of our still hefty sandwich can be viewed here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/11863391...

          http://thewizardofroz.wordpress.com

          1. re: RGR

            As in other posts, dissent on the sandwich size. My take is they are now smaller. Either that or my stomach has shrunk and I've lost my peripheral vision.

            1. re: addictedtolunch

              ive been eating at katz's for about 15 years...the sandwiches have only in the last year or two have become increasingly smaller to the tune of 35-40% of what the older sandwiches once were.

              not sure if anyone else has noticed but the coverage of katz's and il labratorio and donut plant has brought tons of tourists out. i tried to have lunch on a friday afternoon and saw a line 20 deep outside of the door...never saw it that crowded in my life.

              1. re: sam1

                sam1...completely agree with you on tourist-mania of Katz's, & sandwich size shrinkage...& I've been going there for 50 years.

                1. re: sam1

                  Agree. The second most embarrassing kind of shrinkage is the one where you take out of town friends to Katz's and for $15 they get a smaller sandwich. (So now I stay out of both Katz's and cold swimming pools when on a date).

              2. re: RGR

                Been eating Katz since the mid-80's
                Sandwich sizes have definitely shrunk. I still think their pastrami -on-rye are pretty good though.

                No opinion on Carnegie. Can't remember the last time I ate, but will definitely look forward to trying out very soon.

                1. re: RGR

                  Actually, looking at the pics you posted, they have shrunk by at least a good 1/3 from the last time I was there, which was 2-3 years ago. Before that I went on a regular basis for over two decades. that sandwich looks like you can get your mouth around it. I always had to eat 1/2 the meat before picking it up and trying to stretch my mouth to take a bit.

              3. KATZ'S without question is better. Taster meat, better fries, prefer the atmosphere. Although they are both overpriced.

                1. You'll find lots of heated opinions on this subject on the Manhattan board. Neither place is the same as 10, 20, 50 years ago, but very little in NYC is.

                  If you haven't been to either then I suggest a visit to each... both have their good points.

                  Having said all that, I vastly prefer Katz's... the pastrami is hand sliced and delicious.

                  1. Sarge's is cheaper, more relaxed setting and better than both katz's and carnegie.

                    Im 100% serious when I say this. There is nothing better than strolling into sarges at 3AM for one of there triple deckers. The pastrami is great, as is their brisket. I have never left there diappointed. except sometimes they have this nasty waitress.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Recursion

                      I agree with you about Sarge's (except I haven't seen any nasty waitresses--but then again I don't go to Sarge's at 3AM).