Wednesday, May 30, 2012

West Side Story: Hudson Street Delicatessen

As much as one can appreciate all the pop up delis across the state, it's a breath of fresh air to know that some neighborhood establishments are here to stay.  I'm talking about the Hudson Street Delicatessen.  This retail space has served the West Side of Providence in one way shape or form since 1922; it was the Hudson Street Market before it was the Hudson Street Deli.  Currently, the Hudson Street Deli offers an array of delectable treats suitable for any taste.  Here was my first taste, it's called The Staten:

Don't even start with me.  This is the perfect meal I want to have on a Saturday morning, or really any morning for that matter.  What makes me so stupid happy is the fact that they use real eggs and bacon to complete this satiable dream.  They even offer pork roll for our New Jersey transplants.  What's even better?  They have so much more to choose from.  How about their classic Grinder?

With fresh, pillowy bread from Palmieri's bakery and meats from Boar's Head, this sandwich is heaven.  The bit of Italian salsa at the bottom is a welcomed addition.  I should also mention that this is the half portion, the full portion is an entire loaf of Italian bread.

Let me take a moment to explain this establishment beyond its food.  While I was waiting for my grinder I saw a local woman come into the deli with a pint glass.  She had brought it from home, filled it with iced coffee and then left.  The woman was within walking distance from the deli and has such a rapport with the deli that she brings her own dishware.  This is the epitome of a neighborhood deli.  I'm pretty sure the majority of folks streaming in and out were on a first name basis with one another.

Here's more food:

This is The Dexter.  As you may be noticing, many of these sandwich names are unique.  The Dexter, for example, is named after Dexter Street and Dexter Park; another homage to the West End.  Comprised of sliced turkey, cheddar cheese, crisp romaine lettuce, juicy tomatoes, perfectly ripe avocado, lemon-basil mayo all "sandwiched" between a fresh Calise Bakery roll.


This little piece of art is the R.I.'s Best Reuben.  Out of all the sandwiches I ate here, this is the one that stuck out in my mind the most.  It has the great foundation that any reuben is built on - marbled rye, corned beef, russian dressing, and swiss cheese.  It's the little touches that make this reuben stellar.  The sauerkraut is made with purple cabbage as opposed to green which provides for this pop of color one would reserve for Mardi Gras!  Then to top it off the whole thing is toasted in a panini maker to add a subtle crunch.  I highly, highly recommend all reuben lovers to try this twist on a classic.

As is you needed more to eat after all the sandwich choices, there are still more choices.  In an utter display of the Act Locally mentality, Hudson Street Deli showcases local talent in many forms.  The display case in the photo below is filled with treats from a one-woman operation called Top Shelf Bakery.  Not just any treats, many items are gluten-free, vegan as well as traditional.

Another local product they carry are the jams and jellies from Garden of Eatin.

Hudson Street Deli also carries Rhody Fresh milk, yogurt parfaits in the morning from Narragansett CreameryYacht Club Soda, and Empire Soda; their coffee is from Equal Exchange, which works with small-scale coffee growers and their co-operatives for over 25 years; and a local freelancing graphic designer, Casey Spencer, designed the menu boards.

Owner Rebecca Rossi-Baruzzi, who lives above the deli with her husband and almost 1year old, hated seeing the old Hudson Street Market gone.  She knew that this retail space was important to the neighborhood so she reopened in 2009 and has been going strong ever since.  It also has a very loyal following, including this gal, who will be returning for more!

Hudson Street Deli on Urbanspoon

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