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Posted by old newenglander on 12/18/2009
Went to the famous Katz's deli for the 1st time and got the worst pastrami sandwich of my life! The pastrami was so fatty and grisly as to be inedible. The accompanying round knish was tasty but soggy. Even the egg cream was not right. It was either left standing forever or not mixed thoroughly. The seltzer had risen to the top. A disappointing experience not to be repeated!
Posted by EastVillagette on 10/09/2009
Katz's has always been my choice for corned beef sandwiches, even when the 2nd Avenue Deli was still down the block from me. Be sure to tell the slicer if you want it fatty or lean; I prefer the fattier (hey, if you're gonna do it, DO it!). And be sure to tip him too. Fries are okay. Hot dogs are great, potato salad is fine, egg creams could be a bit more chocolate-y.
Posted by Matt on 09/27/2009
This place is great; the security and staff are very friendly and I was quite impressed at how smooth things are run in such a hectic environment. Be polite and tip the slicer a few bucks. Be warned: if you lose your ticket, kiss your money goodbye! If you are rude/cut in line, you will either be removed or sent to the back of the line. Don't be afraid to speak up when someone is acting like a loser. The pastrami is out of this world and the sandwiches are gigantic and worth the cost. Seriously, I did not even stop to breathe before I finished the entire thing. It's that good and I wish I didn't live so far away uptown :(
Posted by nyymm7 on 08/07/2009
Everthing is more expensive--portions in the most expensive restaurants are smaller. As for tipping the slicer--what is the big deal--don't you tip the waiter in a restaurant? I have been going to Katz's for over 25 years and the pastrami has gotten better, the turkey is moister and tastier, the brisket is better than ever. I f you are pleasant and tip the slicers--who depend very much on this income--as do waiters-- I have never had a problem. There are many tourists and uneducated customers--all are welcome---uptown delis are even more expensive. I remain a loyal katz customer
Posted by Pastrami4Cash on 07/28/2009
After reading several of these reviews, I suddenly know why my hot pastrami on rye was so below expectations.....I didn't tip the slicer. Dumb me, I didn't know I had to tip the slicer to get a decent sandwich...I thought just paying the bill would be enough. My thin layer of pastrami was good, too bad the layer of meat wasn't as thick as the rye bread. Are there 'Tip the slicer' signs? If so, I missed them. Oh well, Katz - been there, done that and once was enough.
Posted by catseye on 07/18/2009
Katz's seems to be in a state of serious and ongoing decline. Whether or not this becomes a terminal decline remains to be seen, but the signs are not good. Portions have been reduced, both in the size of each sandwich and in the scrimpiness of the samples offered as sandwiches are made. Far worse than quantity is the fact that Katz's has only one outstanding item--its world-class pastrami. Corned beef is not as good as what anyone can buy in a package for home cooking. Soups (including matzoh ball soup) are sub-diner quality. Knishes are a standard brand--readily available and mediocre at best. (Anyone who has had a Zabar's knish will not likely order another at Katz's.) Katz's does not seem to TRY to be better. Its dumpy environment has a certain lively and familiar appeal, but I am less and less charmed by its nostalgia and increasingly struck by the fact that, beyond pastrami, there is nothing worth ordering. Even in these price-sensitive times (for both restaurants and patrons), more can be done with less. Reputations like Katz's are built over decades, but lost quite quickly. For the first time I am beginning to think that Katz's has spiraled into a decline which will not be easily reversed. I will miss this once-great New York institution if it does not survive. Perhaps a rescue is not beyond hope.
Posted by r & w on 06/28/2009
Not only was their matzah ball soup a joke (water and salt, with something they called a matzah ball that no grandmother would have ever served)--their process of pure chaos ordering and forcing you to tip the slicer is ridiculous. He did not even cut the corned beef correctly so it all fell apart--guess he did not like the tip. They make you nuts about turning in a piece of paper that is stamped or claim you will have to pay $50 fee--try to collect. The place has not been cleaned in a long time and the Board of Health is obviously asleep in NYC to allow them to continue in operation. CASH only or Travelers Checks--who uses those any more. People are lined up, I guess based on pure 50 year ago reputation, which is totally not deserved. Pick another of the 1000's of quality NYC restaurants over Katz's. There have to be much better deli's as well. What does the owner care--he's laughing all the way to his piggy bank.