Katie: Hey sarah, wanna have lunch?In about an hour we were both about to embark from our separate destinations on a quest for sandwiches. Gigantic sandwiches. I've seen gigantic sandwiches on a television show called Man vs. Food, and for months I have been obsessed with a particular one from the first episode.
Me: Sure! Any ideas on what you want to have?
Katie: Not really.
Me: Wanna go for pound-of-meat sandwiches?!
Katie: THAT'S THE BEST THING I'VE EVER HEARD IN MY ENTIRE LIFE!!
Located in the quirky, lower east side of manhattan lies Katz Delicatessen but known simply as 'Katz' by the locals. Does this name sound familiar? It appears in a very famous scene of a very famous movie called When Harry Met Sally. And I'm sure you know which scene I'm talking about. Yep, the orgasm one. (I never thought I would ever have a reason to type the word 'orgasm' in my blog! Hey, now I wrote it twice!).
Katz has been around for more than a hundred years. It opened in 1888 to be exact. This means that the restaurant existed long before America had all 50 states. In addition, it survived two World Wars and the Great Depression. This is a testament that their recipes have withstood the test of time! I'm pretty sure there will be many more years to come. One bite out of their pastrami and you'll be convinced too. There is no doubt, you will taste perfection.
They had to fix the "1888" manually.
Photoshop didn't exist back then! oh noes!
Once inside, you'll be greeted by a host who will give you a ticket. The ticket is used as an accumulative receipt where you will pick up sandwiches, soups, and drinks from the different counters. Make sure not to lose your ticket or you will be very sorry! It gets confusing at the counters because it can get crowded, but its worth it when you have one of these babies:
Pastrami with mustard on rye bread.
Each sandwich holds a pound of meat and comes with a side of garlic deli pickles. This is not just a sandwich but masterpiece, delicately sculpted by angels. And by angels, I mean the hard working guys behind the deli counter. Tip them nicely and they'll take care of you. My angel gave me a small sample of hot pastrami to try. I split it with Katie :) I was surprised with the polite service all around for a place that is super busy. I tipped the guy and he gave me the biggest smile!
Katie ordered the Reuben sandwich. Corned beef, swiss cheese, sauerkraut on rye and I suspect homemade Thousand Island dressing! Now stop right here and just look at that melted cheese!
This is what very hungry people look like as they are about to embark on a culinary journey.
Me on the left: I like to show everything as if I am on the Price is Right.
Katie and I had a master plan. An hour prior we decided on ordering two different sandwiches so we could swap out each half and share. We are undisputed geniuses. Katie's sandwich came with pickles and green tomatoes in brine... I didn't like the tomatoes, they tasted like dead olives. It just meant I had to take a big bite out of my sandwich to cancel it out! aha! Yes, that fixed everything as I felt the warm corned beef melt in my mouth.
Halfway through our meal, one of the employees, a friendly bearded old man, stopped by to chat with us. Aww! How nice! I really felt at home at this place! Our conversation slowed as our bellies became full but there was still half of a sandwich left for each of us! Fear not! I was prepared. I had brought plastic containers so we can enjoy the deliciousness later! The look on Katie's face was priceless when I told her about my magical bag of lots of stuff! In addition to the plastic containers, I also had a NYC subway map, hand sanitizer, a can of coconut water, my SLR camera nicknamed "Big Boy", eyeglass lens cleaner with wipes, chapstick and more! I think that I would've been a really cute boy scout! I like to be prepared!
A quick warning for the ladies: The bathroom stall is very small. Its one of those where the stall closes right in front of your nose. But hey, you go to Katz for the sandwiches, not to inspect the rest rooms!
$16 for a sandwich = absolutely worth it. I will be thinking about this sandwich for years to come. In fact I will definitely return, I am a customer for life! Sadly it was time to leave, but before we did we had to take obligatory tourist pictures with the restaurant:
Before we move on from sandwiches I have to share this: This is Not a Song its a Sandwich by Pyschostick
I'm not familiar with the East Village section of NYC. It gets confusing because this area isn't on a numbered grid system like its midtown neighbor. So Katie and I walked around a lot. Its fun to get lost in NYC because there is lots to see and do. In fact, we found this amazing wall!
Katie can cross off "High-five an octopus" on her To Do list.
We wandered around and somehow found Chinatown where I took her to my favorite bubble tea house where more hilarity ensued :)
Good food, good company, and good conversation. I hope there will be more adventures! :)