After checking out the Experimental Aircraft Association AirVenture Museum (click here to see my entry), I decided that I still had time to grab a quick sandwich before a scheduled appointment in Appleton. I had a hankering for a good ol' pastrami on rye sandwich and I did an Urbanspoon search for deli's in the area. The New York Deli came up and I found that it wasn't that far away from where I needed to go. I put the address into the GPS and headed to get to the New York Deli.
The New York Deli is owned by Don Sanderfoot and his son, Carl Sanderfoot. A few years ago, the Sanderfoots went to New York and were impressed with the old school Jewish deli's that piled the meat high on fresh bread. After returning to the Fox Valley area, the Sanderfoots saw a need for an authentic New York-style delicatessen. They opened their New York Deli in 2004 providing deli and sub sandwiches, expanding into wraps, panini sandwiches, soups, salads, and dessert as the years went on.
The New York Deli is sort of hidden if you aren't familiar with it. It's located on Casaloma Drive north of the Fox River Mall and near Time Warner Fox Cities Stadium that houses the local Wisconsin Timber Rattlers Class A Midwest League baseball team. (see map). Technically, it's in the Trasino Park business area of the Appleton suburb of Grand Chute. I found the New York Deli in a small strip mall on the north side of Casaloma.
Inside, the deli is heavy on corrugated tin siding, but in an elegant way. Granite tiled floors and somewhat modern industrial chairs and tables were mixed throughout the dining area. The area was well lit with natural light from large windows on the south and west sides.
The menu is located on the wall behind the front counter. I pretty much knew what I was going to get, I just had to make sure they had rye bread. And they did. As I was standing at the counter getting ready to order, I saw a small bag of Sprecher's beer flavored kettle chips. Sprecher's is a micro-brewery located just north of Milwaukee in suburban Glenview. I don't like their beer as much as I like other Wisconsin beers - it's a little too sweet for my tastes - but they do make a damn fine root beer. But the beer-flavored kettle chips intrigued me. I had to pick up a package of them to try.
When I order pastrami sandwiches, I'm pretty basic. All I want is the pastrami, some Swiss cheese and yellow mustard on rye bread. And that's how I ordered my sandwich. I also got a bottle of water to go along with the sandwich and chips. After I ordered and paid, the young lady at the counter gave me a number tent to place on my table so they could bring my sandwich out to me.
I had to open the bag of beer flavored kettle chips while I waited for my sandwich to show up. I don't know if they really tasted like beer or not. They had that crisp kettle texture to them and they were a little salty. But I think they were more hype than substance. I made a mental note that I wouldn't be sucked in to buying them again.
After a few moments, someone brought my sandwich out to me. True to New York-style delicatessens, the meat was piled high between two slices of dark rye bread. Thin slices of Swiss cheese were on the bottom of the sandwich and a thin layer of yellow mustard adorned the top.
The thin-sliced pastrami was flavorful and had that great salty taste to it. The dark rye bread was a little dry for my standards and it didn't hold together very well as I ate through the sandwich. I found that I had to use my fingers to pick up pieces of pastrami that fell from the bread that was slowly fell apart as I ate. It wasn't a deal breaker by any means, but it was slightly annoying.
Some deli aficionados - especially those from New York City - would probably laugh at the sandwich from New York Deli. But for Appleton, Wisconsin, it's not bad. The pastrami was fresh and tasty. However, the bread was a little dry and I won't get fooled again on the Sprecher's beer-flavored kettle chips. But for a quick deli sandwich - from a place that tries to be a real deli - I was happy with what I got at the New York Deli. It wasn't the best pastrami sandwich I've had, but it certainly wasn't the worst.