Few foods are more comforting than two slices of rye, smeared with coarse mustard, and topped with moist, rich deli meats. Add a side of matzah ball soup and a Dr. Brown’s cream soda and it’s like taking a bite out of New York’s rich Jewish history–which is as old as the city itself. So without further ado, here are our picks for the best kosher and kosher-style delis in New York:
205 E. Houston St., at Ludlow St.
Katz’s is, perhaps, New York City’s most famous family-owned kosher-style deli. It’s where Harry met Sally (in the movie) and their pastrami is world famous. It tends to be a tourist trap and they have a complicated ticketing system to get in and out, but the pastrami is well worth it. Just remember, you may want to share.
2. Jay & Lloyds
2718 Avenue U, Brooklyn, NY 11229
This is the best deli when you have kids in tow. Located deep in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, Jay and Lloyds’s boasts a full menu of kids’ meals that come in colorful cardboard school buses and are accompanied by a coloring page. The grown-up food is delicious, too, and comes with fat, rustic, homemade fries.
3. 2nd Avenue Deli
162 E. 33rd St., nr. Third Ave.
Portions at this classic New York deli are HUGE. Heaping deli meats piled high on rye, and gigantic matzah balls swim in roomy chicken soup bowls. Even the chicken strips–for the little humans–are massive.
4. Carnegie Deli
854 Seventh Ave., at 55th St.
Sandwiches at this iconic New York fixture are unbelievably tall and juicy and come with the fattest, most addictive sour pickles your taste buds have ever experienced. But sandwiches are on the pricier side. Their most famous sandwich, “The Woody Allen,” literally an Eiffel tower of pastrami and corned beef, will set you back $24.99.
61 E 34th St, New York, NY 10016
Conveniently located at Rockefeller Center and Grand Central Station, Mendy’s is a high-quality kosher deli for foodies on the go. Also, it’s the glattest of all koshers for more observant folks (and sadly one of the last remaining true kosher delis in New York).