New York Deli's

Old Jan 16th, 2004, 04:39 AM
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New York Deli's

Coming from the UK we would really love to go to a typical New York deli for thick pastrami sandwiches. We will be staying at the Shelburne in the Murray Hill area and would like somewhere where the New Yorkers would go not just the tourists also where should we eat breakfast.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 04:48 AM
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Head downtown to Katz's deli in the Lower East Side. Not only a good sandwich but quite the experience. Also 2nd Ave deli is very good.

You'll enjoy the Shelburne. It's a very nice hotel.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 05:01 AM
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I second the suggestion to go to Katz's Deli. I went for the first time in May last year (I am from the UK too) and thought the pastrami sandwiches were excellent (and very thick too) and the atmosphere was good as well.

I don't know whether there were many tourists compared to locals there but it seemed quite an authentic NYC experience and I enjoyed it.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 05:27 AM
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Second Avenue Deli is the spot.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 05:32 AM
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I ate my first pastrami sandwich at Katz's nearly 40 years ago, and they're still as good today! And MFNYC is quite right about the atmosphere--what an experience!
 
Old Jan 16th, 2004, 05:59 AM
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If you're staying in the Murray Hill area then try Sarge's Deli, on 3rd between 36th and 37th - right in the middle of the neighborhood. It's our fave place and open 24 hrs, convenient if you're still on UK time and want breakfast at 4 in the morning. Latkes to die for, big platters, sable on a bagel... yikes, I'm ready. Non touristy, non Kosher, all great.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 06:18 AM
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Is the Carnegie Hall Deli still there? I ate a pastrami sandwich there 20 years ago and there was enough meat for 2 sandwiches!
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 07:02 AM
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Definitely go to Katz Deli (205 East Houston). They have been around for over 100 years, so they must be doing something right.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 08:23 AM
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I think it is a toss-up regarding 2nd Ave or Katz's. I would pick the one that best fits the rest of the itinerary. Katz's perhaps has more of a unique, memorable atmosphere, and 2nd Ave. perhaps has friendlier service. You will love the food at either.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 08:49 AM
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One post stated " Katz's perhaps has more of a unique, memorable atmosphere. " It certainly is unique and memorable if you like Seedy. Having said that they do make a good pastrami sandwich. There will definately be more locals than tourists. I suspect the tourists are those who find out about Katz's from message boards such as this. 2nd Ave. Deli would be a little more convenient to get to from the hotel.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 09:40 AM
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2nd Avenue & katz's are great, however, keep in mind that on the weekend they are packed. You could wait up to an hour at either restaurant.

And you need to know the drill at Katz's. They will hand every single person in your party a ticket when you walk in. Even if some of them do not get 'marked' for food, you have to return ALL of them. The tables against the wall are waitress service only, and there may be a line for those. For the other tables, you need one person to sit and hold your space, and another person to get the food and bring it back on a tray. There is not one line for food. Every person doing the carving has his own separate line. Grab a tray from up front by the hotdogs. Then be a New Yorker and push your way into the crowd. Bring a dollar to tip the carving guy because he is going to give you a couple of slices to munch on while you wait for your order. One sandwich will feed 2 people. You can also order extra rye bread, and pull their gigantic sandwich apart and make 2 of your own. French fries and drinks are another separate line. If you order a pastrami/corned beef combo, you do not get one half of each. They put both together on each of the sides. Other good things to order: Matzoh Ball or Split Pea Soup.

A few blocks north on Houston is Yonah Shimmel Knishes. Also a throw back in time with the best knishes--cabbage, potato, strawberry & cheese, spinach, etc.

Sorry, I have to respectfully disagree with the Sarge's suggestion. My own opinion is that their corned beef is tasteless. If I had my eyes shut I wouldn't be able to tell what I was eating.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 09:41 AM
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AT Katz's you go directly to the deli counter to order your sandwich. They slice the pastrami by hand (not deli slicing machine) and give you a sample. You can also get waitress service there, but there can be a wait. 2 Av is more of a restaurant (or you can order to go in either place).
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 11:27 AM
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And...if you like fries and happen to go to 2nd Ave. Deli, walk down the street just a bit to a little hole in the wall called Pommes Frites for Belgian fries accompanied by your choice from a huge variety of sauces. As others have indicated, Katz's has a system to it (this is part of the atmosphere I mentioned), whereas 2nd Ave. is more of a normal restaurant and less hectic.
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 12:31 PM
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I disagree with all who say go to Katz's deli. GO TO CARNEGIE DELI on 73rd street.. it is the quinessential NY deli with sandwiches piled high and the perfect NY pickle. it gets crowded, so get there early!
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Old Jan 16th, 2004, 01:27 PM
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A couple of corrections

Carnegie Deli is at 55th and 7th, not 73rd St.

Yonah Shimmel is West of Katz's not North
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Old Jan 17th, 2004, 07:36 AM
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I was only able to get to 2nd Ave. Deli and to Carnegie Deli when visiting NYC in August. Between those two, it's a no-brainer, hands down choice --- 2nd Ave Deli is the better. Carnegie is okay and certainly if you're staying at that end of Manhattan, convenience & proximity may factor into your decision. Oh ... but the food at 2nd Ave .... chopped liver better than your bubby used to make ... the mushroom barley soup--very tasty. If you are seeking the true New York deli experience I'd say go to 2nd Ave or Katz's --- better yet, go to both !
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Old Jan 17th, 2004, 08:12 AM
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You'll enjoy Carnegie Deli. Sandwiches are huge, fries are yummy and cheesecake is delicious. These delis can be quite intimidating when you first enter, but it is an experience that everyone should have...it's New York!!
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Old Jan 17th, 2004, 08:28 AM
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There are lots of delis in NY. When I lived there, almost every deli had good pastrami and sandwiches. Some are just little neighborhood places. If you see one that has a good business, chances are it has good food. Doesn't have to be written up in Zagats to be worthy of a try.

Zabars in the west side is worth a trip. Best bagels, cheese selection, lox. It is just a fun place to explore. It was probably the very first place I went to when I moved to NY. After the YWCA for an overnight that is.
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Old Jan 18th, 2004, 12:02 AM
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I also highly recommend Katz's Deli. If you want table service, then take one of the tables against the wall.
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Old Jan 18th, 2004, 04:21 AM
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Katz is the deal. Not a New Yorker to be found at Carnegie.

As stated earlier, Katz has been around for about 100 years and my family has been eating there about as long. I'm not a big meat eater, but when I want Pastrami or Corned beef, I head over to Katz.

In addition yo Yonah's for a kinish, Russ and Daugheters is also on Houston Street - one of the best places in the city for smoked fish; lox, sturgeon, sable, etc.

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