Save the Deli

PhilADeli slipped through the cracks

I have to say that I’m disappointed in myself. Usually Save the Deli is on top of all deli news, but I am only one man, and even this tireless deli crusader can screw up. Which is why I’m not only sad to report the closing of Philadelphia’s PhilADeli, but I’m also disappointed in myself because it closed way the hell back in February…sorry, I must have been skiing.

Anyway, I was talking with my friend Jeremiah yesterday, who is a Philly native. He told me about the closure of PhilADeli, a true downtown institutions. Part bodega, part liquor store, and deli to the core, it joins the list of other famous Philly delis of past, like the memorable Koch’s (owned by the late Bob Koch…a wisecracking, hard assed, real man that embodied brotherly love). I missed Philly on my deli tour last year, but I promise to get there next time round.

Anyway, the PhilADeli story is told on this blog here, which i’ve copied below. Pics are his also.

R.I.P. Philadeli 2.10.08
February 17, 2008 · No Comments

This past week another Philly institution closed it’s doors for good. If you ever lived or worked in the South Street district in the city of brotherly love, then you have most likely been to this fine establishment more than once. Serving the South St area for 30 years, Philadeli was a second home to neighborhood natives. You could cop all the essentials at this high priced Jewish bodega/diner, from tampons to take out beer. I will miss going in there to buy smokes to only have Lenny bust my balls with his sarcastic, less than friendly sense of humor. Big up to Fran, you’ll be missed too.

The only thing we we’re left with was a cartoon drawing of Porky Pig (wearing a fucking Yamaka) on the door saying “That’s all folks”.

*note, I’m sure he meant Yarmulka, though perhaps there’s some new Japanese Yamaka out there, covering Jewish heads more efficiently than the other versions.

8 Responses to “PhilADeli slipped through the cracks”

  1. Stu Shiffman Says:

    I believe that “Yamaka” is the Yiddish pronounciation of the brand name “Yamaha” with a hard Kheh.

  2. Zane Caplan Says:

    Love the sign. Almost as good as the hairy pink piglet on the cover of the Food Issue of Heeb magazine.

  3. Save The Deli » Blog Archive » Reichl loves Caplansky’s, Sy gets his due, the battle of Philly, and Irving’s in NJ Says:

    [...] partnered up with some investors and opened this center city location.  He has some deli guys from Phila Deli and another guy who had worked at Steinman’s in Jenkintown, PA and Dovie’s Deli in [...]

  4. Andy Says:

    I am really late on this but this is the Deli where I fell in love with the girl of my dreams. Now 20 years later she is the woman of my dreams, I have never stopped loving and it grew from this spot. We sat and talked for hours here and planned our future. When I think of the deli, I think of her. We were hoping to get back here together –

    By the way the Porky is the cause of the swine flu – bastard

  5. Marco Sciuto Says:


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