Artie’s Delicatessen – The Sandwich of My Dreams

Who doesn’t love a deli? If the scents of sour pickles, garlicky meats, and long simmered soups don’t get your engine running, you had better check your pulse, because you’re probably dead. I was raised on corned beef sandwiches, stuffed kishke, and the like, so eating these foods is my trip down memory lane. That’s why I felt especially keen to try Artie’s, a Jewish-style deli on the UWS.

Artie’s is a very gentrified version of the classic deli – cleaner and brighter, with young servers who don’t yell at you if you aren’t ready to order.

Pickles and Coleslaw

Any good deli gives you a little nosh before you know what you want to eat. The dill pickles were excellent – cold, crunchy, and sour with a touch of fragrant dill flavor. The coleslaw was even better – slightly sweet, with a creamy mayonnaise dressing tempered by the tang of vinegar. Two pickles and and a few forkfuls of colelsaw later, I was ready to make my meal happen.

Matzoh Ball Soup

I am not one for ordering matzoh ball soup at restaurants, because I feel like they never compare to the soups that you eat at people’s homes during Passover. That said, after trying my dining companion’s soup, I had to admit that this was surprisingly tasty. The matzoh balls were fluffy but not mushy, with a slight amount of resistance as my spoon slid cleanly though them. They were tender on the tongue, light and infused with a clean chicken flavor. The soup was not too salty(MAJOR pet peeve of mine), but it lacked the rich, gelatinous, savory flavor of truly long simmered chicken stock. Even so, the carrots were sweet and tender, and this is one of the better versions that I have tried from a restaurant.

Brisket Reuben with Sauerkraut, Muenster Cheese, and Horseradish Dressing

This was the most disappointing of the dishes ordered. The brisket was overcooked, rendering it limp and gray. It was saved by the excellent accompaniments – sour, crisp sauerkraut, aromatic rye bread, and gooey muenster cheese. The horseradish dressing could have used more of a sinus-clearing kick, but, then, I will always say that. This sandwich was fine, but not excellent. For excellent, you will have to see exhibit C:

Pastrami and Chopped Liver with Bermuda Onion

Yes. That is right. 3 of my favorite things in one sandwich. Thick slices of garlicky, peppery pastrami. The tender pieces of beef were surrounded by a pearly layer of fat that melted upon contact with my tongue. Creamy chopped liver, iron-y and umami, decadence at its finest. Razor thin slices of Bermuda onion, sharp at first then sweet at the end, to cut through the fat and salt of the sandwich. The chopped liver made the pastrami taste spicier, and the pastrami was so substantial that it made the chopped liver delicate, more like a spread than an overwhelming sandwich component. There was a good amount of meat there without being overwhelming, and the bread used was that same hearty rye. This sandwich longed for nothing.

Artie’s is not the best deli in the world. It’s a little gentrified, and the brisket leaves something to be desired. But the service is great, the menu is huge, and the chopped liver/pastrami sandwich is so good I just may go back for another today.

Just don’t expect anyone to kiss you afterwards-all that garlic is good for the appetite, bad for the romantic life.
Artie's Delicatessen on Urbanspoon

Comments

  1. JustinM says:

    I would go for that turkey/corned beef/pastrami/slaw/Russian dressing sandwich. Sounds right up my alley. But your brisket sandwich could have been great if they'd cared more about the brisket – what you got looks terrible.

  2. Ada says:

    I've been going to Artie's since I was a little kid and love the pickles and cole slaw they give you. Their corned beef is also pretty darn good. Are you living on the UWS now? if so, we should def meet up soon:) I'm writing my thesis now and trying to survive final exams, but after that I'd love to meet you!

  3. JustinM says:

    Making the brisket sandwich for dinner tonight – just put the beef in the slow cooker. I'm gonna do it the right way.

  4. Fritos and Foie Gras says:

    @Justin-Just saw your version…dude, that looks amazing! So jealous!
    @Ada-I am in Hell's Kitchen, but am working on the UWS, so am eating in your hood a lot! I would love to meet up some time!!

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