Send Some Salami To Your Boy In The Army

8th February 2011

New York is a bit of a city made for masochist. The best places in the city are the gritty ones with questionable food ethics and seemingly morose employees. Katz deli is one of these places. You walk into Katz and some disgruntled man slouched onto a stool hands you a ticket with a list of numbers on it and no explanation.  What they are NOT telling you when they hand you this ticket is:

  • you hand it to the person who makes your food, and they hand it back to you with the total on it.
  • if you lose this ticket, you get charged 50 bucks.
  • this “lost ticket fee” was instilled about 10 years ago.

You choose the person you want to make your sandwich, and they chop the meat in front of you, and give you a sample of the fresh meat while you wait. I always try to find the oldest guy because he’s usually the biggest asshole who makes the best sandwich.

Although the sandwiches are a bit pricey (15-17 dollars a pop) I bet you can’t get through half of one without wanting to die a little inside. As a meat eater and a lover of irrelevant history, this is one of my favorite New York establishments.

Heres a few more Katz facts:

  • Katz is where they filmed THE scene from When Harry Met Sally
  • It was established in 1888
  • During World War 2, they used the slogan “send a salami to your boy in the army” and still use it to this day
  • Each week, Katz’s serves 5,000 pounds of corned beef, 2,000 pounds of salami and 12,000 hot dogs

All photos by Chloe Rice

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8 thoughts on “Send Some Salami To Your Boy In The Army

  1. tom

    That sandwich looks divine. If that is what you got/ate, then I will regard it as further evidence that you are a goddess.

    Has a cult been started in your honor? If so, how might I join it? Otherwise, may I start it? I shall ask my girlfriend’s permission as well…

  2. Karra

    I wonder if this is the same Katz here in Houston. The advertise as being related to one in New York. The sandwiches are AMAZING and just as pricey but they don’t have tickets or a ticket fee (there’s no way they’d get away with that in Texas!).

    Now, I’m craving a reuben from Katz.

  3. Jorge D.

    I’ve seen the episode of Man vs. Food from Katz and I have to get the pastrami/corned beef combo! How was the Reuben?

  4. Laura

    Every time Katz is on TV, I feel a desperate urge to head over there and indulge in head-sized sammiches. The only thing that stops me is the fear of old, entrenched institutions who have their own culture and can afford to not explain it to newcomers. So thanks for the tips, maybe now I’ll take the plunge.

  5. Frank

    I have only been to Katz once and I found the ordering process to be totally baffling but also charming. I wish I could get a good Reuben in Louisiana. Have you been to the little french place, The Pink Pony, around the corner? Totally different vibe but a nice little spot.

  6. monkeyKing

    awesome sandwich. and yeah, i’m one of those that stood there with ticket for the first time wondering.. WTF?

  7. anon

    It’s odd that Jewish delis charge (and thus I assume Jews pay) so much for a sandwich when they are supposed to be frugal.


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