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30 Yrs of Michael's Deli?

I was just reading a Boston Mag article on over the top hot dogs that referenced Michael's Deli's pastrami dog. The second line says, "...new owner Steve Peljovich has worked hard to overcome the deli’s hostile reputation, earned from over 30 years of infamously gruff service."

I could have sworn Michael's opened while I lived in Coolidge Corner around 2001. Was it somewhere else previously? Or am I mis-remembering?

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  1. Ah, here's the explanation: it started out in Marblehead in 1977, and moved to Brookline in 2002.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Allstonian

      Huh. Had no idea. When it was new, the place definitely felt like a brand new owner learning how to put it all together. Not like a 20+ year veteran establishment. The food was good from the start, but I distinctly remember menu items that weren't available, and a bit of chaos in those early days. BTW... I never minded the gruffness of the place. That's just the way it was - take it or leave it.

      I've only been once since the new owner took over, and it was still good. We liked some knishes with adventurous fillings that weren't on the original menu.

    2. And we in Marblehead still miss it!

      1. The food and service both improved considerably with the most recent ownership change.

        1 Reply
        1. re: black_lab

          I agree black_lab. The previous owner use to make me feel like he was doing me a favor. The new owner is very pleasant and the corned beef is much better!

        2. I wish they'd expand the seating.

          I got along with Michael but my kid absolutely hated him.

          1 Reply
          1. re: lergnom

            I didn't have a problem with Michael either.


          2. You had to know what to expect when dealing with Michael. His product was the best around but definitely not a pleasant person. I know that he had a sharing charge, so does the Carnegie Deli, but when I got a sandwich to go and asked that he wrap the halves separately, he still charged me a sharing charge, Don't miss the attitude.

            My Marblehead cousin said that "We ran him out of Marblehead."

            1. Is the bread any better under the new owner? I remember the old Michael's as having pretty fine corned beef, but the bread was awful Wonderbread-level crap. Only the rolls were decent.


              1 Reply
              1. re: MC Slim JB

                I had a corned beef sandwich there over the weekend and the rye bread was the best part. The bread was sturdy enough to maintain its structural integrity and had a nice, strong rye flavor. The corned beef wasn't very good and the cole slaw was tasteless.