Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Guess Who Eats Together at the Carnegie Deli?

According to Adam Sandler's, "The Chanukah Song," that would be "Bowser from Sha Na Na and Arthur Fonzerelli." But take a few steps into this tourist haunt, and you'll see that the walls are littered with photos of famous actors and actresses, athletes, politicians, musicians and other celebrities who have dined there. At Carnegie Deli, New York City's largest kosher-style deli, the portions are hearty and huge, with wildly inflated prices to match.

Inside of the "Ah, There's the Reuben" Sandwich
Despite the high prices, the food does certainly please the palate, and, you're guaranteed to have leftovers. My dining companion ordered a quintessential Reuben sandwich. For $23.95, this gargantuan sandwich came "piled high" with corned beef (one could also order pastrami or turkey), sauerkraut, and melted Swiss cheese. Curious just how high the meat on this sandwich was layered, we counted after the first bite -- and it appeared to have TEN layers of sliced corned beef. Looking at my friend's plate, there was clearly enough for two or even three people to share. Carnegie Deli is wise to this, and charges a $3.00 fee for sharing, which I believe can go toward the minimum $12.50 per person table charge when dining in.

I went with a bowl of $10.50 matzah ball soup (which I could have gotten for $9.50 if I wanted it sans noodles...), which was surprisingly and satisfying. Two large, fluffy matzah balls appeared to be perfectly packed together as I poured homemade chicken broth over them (Carnegie serves the broth and the balls separately). While filling, what would have really made this soup top the charts is some fresh vegetables or real chicken in the broth, neither of which are included.

I also ordered a potato pancake, or what many Jews know more recognizably as a "latke," a fried pancake made of potato and onion that is a staple when it comes to traditional kosher cuisine. At $5.50, my hand-sized potato pancake, served with applesauce or sour cream, was actually worth the price, and may be the best latke I have had in the tri-state area (although, it has been quite some time since I have dined at what is arguably NYC's oldest delicatessen, Katz's...).

Conclusion? Carnegie Deli is fun to try once or twice, especially if you have never been to NYC before.  Carnegie Deli is located in midtown, at 7th Avenue and 55th. Carnegie Deli does not accept credit cards; although it does accept travelers' checks. The Deli also delivers.


  1. dollinck,

    a reuben with corned beef, sauerkraut and swiss cheese is NOT kosher style.


    uncle freddy