Save the Deli

Grand Central New York Deli opens in Ottawa

Friday, December 19th, 2008

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It seems not too long ago that I wrote about the death of deli in Ottawa, Canada’s under the radar capital city. The city’s last reigning deli, Nate’s, had been slated to close, and that seemed like that for the ‘Twa. A shame too, because with it’s location between corned beef Toronto and smoked meat Montreal, a city literally on the border between English and French Canada, Ottawa had great deli potential.

Which is why it gives me great pleasure to tell you all about a newly opened deli in that city. (more…)

A Birthday Worth Celebrating

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Not a day passes by when I meet someone new here in New York. The introduction usually goes like this:

“What do you do David?”

“I’m a writer.”

“What type of stuff do you write?”

“Well, I’m writing a book on Jewish delicatessens, and I also have a blog, Save the Deli.”

“Oh I love delis.”

Now, this is where the conversation goes one of two ways. They either say:

“You know, I was so happy when the 2nd Ave Deli reopened. That was the best day of my life.”

Or they say:

“It’s a shame that the 2nd Ave Deli closed. Maybe they’ll open up again one day.”

Yes. Amazingly there are plenty of people here in New York who do not know that the 2nd Ave Deli reopened last December 17th, a year ago tomorrow. I don’t know if they live in caves or aren’t really deli fans or just somehow didn’t get the word. So as you all call up the deli, visit the deli, write the deli, and send them your birthday wishes (while ordering something to support them), help spread the word. Take a friend there, send people food from there (a perfect chanukah gift), and pass around this link. The 2nd Ave Deli is open, going strong, and probably the best overall kosher delicatessen in New York City, if not the world.

Happy Birthday 2nd Ave Deli, from deli fans everywhere!

Save the Deli on “Kenny vs. Spenny”

Tuesday, December 9th, 2008

Of of my brother’s favorite shows, and one of the sickest out there, is Kenny vs. Spenny, a quasi reality show where two roommates try to outdo each other in sweet, tasteless competitions. My friend Tracy was a producer on it, and when the topic was “Who Can Be a Better Jew?”, I got the call for the deli segment. We did it at Moe Pancer’s, in Toronto, where the show’s filmed. Kenny Hotz is actually a deli maven with few equals. He’s been to delis far and wide, has a tongue that can pick out the pickles, and is a lover of the whole deli culture.

The clip’s below. My brief appearance is at the end, around the 8:30 mark.

The Best Deli I’ve Never Visited

Monday, December 1st, 2008

Though I’ve been to delis in some pretty far flung places, one that I’m sorely lacking is Shapiro’s in Indianapolis, Indiana.

One of the oldest delis in the nation, open since 1905, Shapiro’s is a bastion of Midwestern corned beef love. It’s like Manny’s in Chicago, with a history that rival’s New York’s Katz’s. But I can’t say for sure, because I’ve sadly never been. (more…)

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