Sunday, October 18, 2009

Caplansky’s Delicatessen, 356 College Street

This deli is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Bagels and lox, chopped liver on challah, kishkas and knishes are all traditional Jewish fare that warrant Stars of David on the menu, however, it is the meat, the smoked ‘in house’ meat that is drawing crowds. So many crowds, that Zane Caplansky has run out of meat on several occasions. He is bringing back the deli, making tongue sammys cool again and it’s working.

Seven dollars will buy you a 7 ounce portion of smoked meat on rye, $10 will turn it into a combo with soup, salad or fries and $13 will equal a thirteen ounce sandwich (for the big burly people).

Like the sandwich, I’m going to give it to you straight:

These sandwiches are generous and so you must be hungry. Don’t worry about the terminology and order it “fatty” – it’s actually not that blubbery but rather juicy and chewy. The marbling of fat show up in little threads that make the meat is so moist, you need very little mustard. It is neither salty nor peppery but rather subtle in flavour – a plethora of spices coming together softly – not over bearing.

On your table you’ll find a caddy with every mustard imaginable – yellow, grainy, hot, honey. At first I liked the options but really, it’s a distraction. You want to try them all and it turns into a mustard tasting.

The coleslaw was dressed in a vinaigrette (insert sad face as I only get happy over creamy ones) and it was bland. Carrot and cabbage are classic but the Colonel’s fluorescent green one packs way more punch.

The pickle plate ($4) was a nice addition to our sandwiches as it provided some crunch when I slipped one or two peppers in between the meat and the bread. The pickle that comes with the sandwich is a quarter of a pickle so no deals trying to squeeze that one in.

Zane was there and it’s always nice to see the proprietor taking action. He sat us, he talked to us, he caught me taking pictures of his food. We even laughed a couple of times.

You can tell he’s pretty cool.

Sorry for lying about being a blogger.