As you guys know by now, I spent my early childhood up north. NYC, Massachusetts and the like. I can remember my mother buying fried shrimp for us to eat on the bus when I was about 2 or 3. Good times. My family and I eventually moved to the south… where we have been all this time. One of the things I remember about being in our duplex in Mass was my mother making us breakfast in the mornings. Because we didn’t eat pork, my mother would make eggs with turkey bacon… but the highlight of my breakfast time was when she would make a breakfast sandwich on a Kaiser roll with pastrami. I didn’t realize that pastrami was a northern (and Chicago thing) like you can get it at the grocery store (deli) but if you were at a sandwich shop… chances are that they didn’t carry it because enough people didn’t eat it.
As I got older, I found that you could get pastrami at diners… but not much else. (I may do a post of my love for all things diner food at a later time. Yet another thing that reminds me of being a kid.) In about 2014/2015 (I remember I still had a horrendous job and was still finishing up college.) Subway ran a commercial that they were now selling pastrami sandwiches…. I don’t hate Subway but normally if I am going to get a sandwich… there are a few other places that come to mind first. But I decided to stop by there before my shift started to get my sandwich. To this day, I remember walking in, and being the only person there and thinking… this is perfect… no one to slow me down. I asked for a hot pastrami… the guy gave me a weird look like I had asked to drink the blood of his ancestors and said… “You must be from up north. We don’t have pastrami. No one eats that around here.” I always find it odd that my simple request always garners a look like I have 3 heads. So when I responded and asked why are the commercials saying that you have it if you in fact don’t? (Rhetorical… because how would he know?) He just shrugged and offered me a Philly cheesesteak instead. (Very good… but even remotely the same.) I thanked him for… (I am not really sure what… It was the polite thing to do but honestly… I could have done without the condescension but…) I went to the nearby McDonald’s instead. I did eventually get a Subway pastrami sandwich… and it wasn’t that great. I didn’t realize you could it wrong. (Insert eyeroll.)
Fast forward to me getting an adult job and working closer to the city. I had forgotten all about trying to find a sandwich place that sold pastrami. One particular day… I left for my lunch break and decided to see what was around the city. Fun times. I figured that I would find a quick place to order food and come back and eat it at my desk. Well with my handy GPS… I stumbled onto Goldberg’s which my phone told me was a sandwich shop. So I figured I would stroll in and give it a try. Best decision I made in a while.
For those of you that don’t know… (I didn’t). Goldberg’s Bagel Company & Deli, originally named Goldberg & Son, started in 1972 as a small true father-and-son run Atlanta deli serving six varieties of authentic New York-style bagels. It became a very popular traditional New York deli. Goldberg’s has expanded its menu offerings to include a wide range of breakfast and lunch items, bagels are still at the heart of the company. That’s why Goldberg’s staff continues to bake more than 500 dozen bagels every weekday and more than 1,000 dozen on the weekends.
I walk in and I was transported back to the young age where I would go out to see with my mom during the day. It was an odd feeling too like I had been there before when I really hadn’t. There was a to go order counter and a place for people who want to dine in. There were a lot of murals and old (black and white) pictures. Just had a great ambience for me. I knew immediately that I would have to bring my parents here. (Cue maniacal laughter.) Here was another place that a large menu. (See post about Red Robin.) Pages and pages of great things. But it didn’t take long to select what I wanted. Hot Pastrami with a side of fries. It took me a minute because they also had a hot corned beef sandwich too. You could get it regular or a “NY Stack” which was much more meat… as people would say, “heart attack on the plate.”
You got your choice of bread be it bagel or bun. There is also a breakfast option of most sandwiches they have to choose from. I was never a big breakfast person but I could see myself coming for breakfast more often to a place like this. I ended up leaving there super full which is always a good sign. It did leave a good dent in my pocket though. Cost me about $25 with the tip just for myself. Did I think it was worth it…? Sure. 100% but also I may not go there as often as I would like. The sandwich ran me about $15 the drink being about $2.00 with tax and tip put me in the mid 20 range. There is nothing like being super satisfied during the mid day work blues.
My next mission was to bring my parents to this place. There was a bit that I remembered from my childhood. But my parents would be the real judges them being hard to impress. My mother is very particular about what she eats. She has severe allergies so it is always hard to try and get her to try something new. But she agreed to come with me for lunch one day. That was all I needed. We parked and walked into the restaurant, and my mother looked around before turning to me and saying… “Never bring me back here again.” What?! we haven’t even eaten yet! She amended her statement to let me know… she could tell from walking in that it was going to be good. And didn’t want to make a habit of coming back. She ordered a turkey sandwich with a salad. And I got the corned beef… With the egg roll appetizer.
Because my mother has a shellfish allergy…. she normally avoids getting French fries while out and about. (Yes, you read that right.) Since a of places that fry fish usually throw the fries in the same grease as the fish… she avoids it altogether. (Now, yes there are more regulations now but my mom has had a few instances at different places where she has ordered fries and had a reaction. Mistakes happen but she doesn’t get anything fried from places anywhere.) But even with a turkey sandwich, they managed to impress her… She had little to complain about aside from the service being slow. (The place was packed… so probably not a good place to go if you are pressed for time. Definitely our bad.) It is a popular place so that was to be expected. She loved it but refused to come back. We will make a place a habit with the quickness.
My next victim was my father. He is a bit easier to impress. We met up at the place…. and he was also taken by the atmosphere. He ordered a hot pastrami sandwich, fries and soup. He bit into the sandwich and I got the laugh of my life watching his eyes roll back. He turned to me and asked “How the hell did you find this place? It really reminds me of being back home.” We loved it. We were able to sit back and reminisce. My dad actually got a to go order for some other people before he left. It was a hit with the whole family. I would say give this place a 9/10. I could really eat here everyday. Don’t hesitate to visit.