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Jan 1, 2011 02:25 PM

is JUNIOR'S deli pastrami HOMEMADE, by any slight chance ??? My guess is it's Hebrew National..

I love the Carnegie Deli, and so does my sis...
but she was thinking JUNIOR'S for a change of pace, cuz she read some good things ...

Feedback, plz !
Happy 1-1-11 to all you fellow Chowhounders !

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

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  1. I doubt it's "home made" whatever that means.

    14 Replies
      1. re: squid kun

        thanks, Squid kun, for refreshing my memory on that article...
        (" Ageless pleasure between the Rye" ...) !!!

        This "homemade" stuff gets a big confusing to me, gutsofsteel....
        I hear you !

        So, apparently, according to the article, (from 2003, so it may be dated) , SARGE'S Deli is the only joint that is smoking on premises, but it does'nt even have a smoker, lol ...!
        (it's "liquid smoke")
        Did'nt care for Sarge's the last time I was there, as it tasted too "HAM" like !
        I like my pastrami dark pink....and this was way too light !

        The article said that KATZ'S makes their pastrami homemade in Brooklyn, but when I called
        Katz's a bunch of months ago, & the counter guy told me "We use EMPIRE" ....
        (I called at a real off-hour, so perhaps I got the true scoop?)

        I guess if deli's get it smoked and cured for them, and then Doctor it up a bit "their way", it's "sort of" homemade? Or at least, HOMESTYLE ?!!!???
        (I am more confused then ever, now...
        maybe I'll send this to DAVID SAX, from the "Save the Deli" book fame...
        PAGING DAVID SAX !!!!!!!

        and all fellow Chowhounders, please help !
        I just don't want to eat pastrami at a "slicer joint", (a deli that just slices Hebrew National or Boars Head (ugh), without at least, SOMEWHAT adding their own spices, etc, etc, etc...

        1. re: ellen4441

          What matters is how it tastes and feels in your mouth.

          Go to Katz's.

          1. re: gutsofsteel

            well said, regarding taste & feel !!!

            But, regarding Katz's, I am in the MINORITY, cuz Katz's pastrami did'nt do it for me !
            I found it too hard to chew....( and I went back a 2nd time to confirm )

            1. re: ellen4441

              Even after you sent back the sample, saying it was too chewy?

              1. re: Pan

                lol, at the sample ....
                I think the counterman gave me a brisket sample, if I remember correctly...
                ...and of course, I gave him a buck ...

                1. re: ellen4441

                  That's weird. In that situation, I think I would have asked for a sample of the pastrami.

                  1. re: Pan

                    yup, wierd ; ....the counterman was pushing the brisket , for some reason, lol ...
                    (and I'd always heard so many good things about the pastrami, so I did'nt even bother asking for it ...)

                    u live and you learn ...

              2. re: ellen4441

                Ya gotta order it extra juicy!
                As far as the production, I think what they do is buy empire kosher beef briskets and navels and then add their own spiced brine (for corned beef) and their own rub for the pastrami. I think this is a closely guarded secret and Id be surprised to learn that they subcontract it out!

                1. re: AdamD

                  interesting food for thought, AdamD..... thanks !!

            2. re: ellen4441

              Since that article a few places have started making their own pastrami from scratch, including Gramercy Tavern (tavern menu) and Joseph Leonard. And for Montreal-style smoked meat made in house, there's Mile End in Brooklyn.

              Gramercy Tavern
              42 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003

              Joseph Leonard
              170 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10014

              1. re: squid kun

                VERY interesting about the GRAMERCY TAVERN homemade pastrami !!
                I'm going to have to do some research on that one ! And perhaps a taste test, lol ..

                RE : Mile End : I ATTEMTPED to get some smoked meat there , back in Feb 2010 within a few weeks of their grand opening.....
                But, unfortunately, they were still suffering from growing pains, and had issues with their "meat supply".... (aka, out of smoked meat !!)
                I still need to get back to Mile End...

                In fact, I was so excited about their prospective opening that I started a thread on here about it last January ! There ended up being lots of good & useful Chowhound feedback on that thread ....

                I was just in San Francisco last month, and went to at THE REFUGE,
                in San Carlos; real good HOMEMADE PASTRAMI there, in a non traditional setting...
                (gr8 belgian beer to go along with the pastrami !) ...
                a MEAT UP with "Teddy, the pastrami king of the bay area" again, lol ...

                It's nice to see pastrami occassionally being "trendy" , as in this case of THE REFUGE ...
                (and , as in the Gramercy Tavern ?!?)

                Gramercy Tavern
                42 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003

                  1. re: squid kun

                    thanks , squid kun !! Good stuff in those Serious Eats pages...
                    I tend to be on their "a hamburger today" page a lot, lol

                    Yup, and I noticed that Flickr pic in the review, when I started googling "Gramercy Tavern pastrami".... ...and , in this case, it comes with cauliflower...
                    (not my 1st choice, lol !!) ....I want cole slaw or potato salad !!! (whine , whine!!)

                    Ouch, another reviewer described it as "holiday ham" style....

        2. just received Facebook post on my wall, from a fellow foodie...
          He told me to pass it up.....that Junior's uses Hebrew National, straight out of the cyrovac,
          and it's warmed up "on request"....