Sometimes I like it dirty.
I mean, lets be real. Every once in a while we all secretly like it a bit nasty and dirty. No, not that you pervs! I’m talking about an old fashioned sandwich shop.
Eisenberg’s is the type of old school sandwich/deli shop that as you walk inside you feel as if everything should be seen in black and white. It’s like entering a time warp back to the 1940′s where you can picture the men wearing fedora hats, the women dressed like in “I Love Lucy” style, and kids drinking soda pop at the counter. Actually, it’s been around since 1929 so it predates even World War 2!
In fact, not much has changed with this place as it still looks like it should be in the 1940′s with all the decades of dirt and grime that came with it. Some who come here would say that the whole place needs a scrub down and complete renovation. Those who say that and get a bit skeeved by a little wear and tear from age just don’t get a place like this, and never will, as that is part of it’s charm. In an age when gentrification threatens to wipe away our history this sandwich shop defies modernization. Thank goodness because to me there is nothing like grabbing a seat at the counter, ordering a sandwich, and an old fashioned egg cream in a beat up old classic NYC sandwich joint. As their saying goes “Either you get it or you don’t”.
When I ate here for lunch the other day I went totally old school. Tuna melt on toasted rye, onion rings, and chocolate egg cream. The sandwich was made perfectly – just the right amount of mayo in the tuna with melted cheese and thick toasted bread. The tuna here tastes great. The onion rings were large, greasy, and crispy – the way they are supposed to be. The chocolate egg cream was awesome, and made with U-Bet’s chocolate syrup – the way it was always meant to be made, and the only correct way. It’s one of those classic NYC lunches that is served up fast and hot, you eat quickly, and head back to work or wherever you were going. Service is a bit gruff as expected, but actually quite pleasant if that can be said in the same sentence. Also, it’s fun to sit at the crowded counter during lunch hour and watch the service staff run back and forth putting everything together.
It’s not the cheapest lunch – tuna melt at $7.50, onion rings at $3.50, and an egg cream at $2.00 – but still not that bad overall at $14 with tax. It was actually quite delicious and a bit different than the normal lunch I get from the area deli and chain spots. Plus, looking at all the past and present celebrity photos, wannabe celebs, friends and family pics in a mish-mash of frames hanging on the walls is a trip in itself down memory lane. Heck, even Anthony Bourdain featured it on his tv show one time.
Just a classic example of a NYC sandwich shop from a time long ago passed by. Seems to have been around forever. Dirt, grime, and all. Just the way I like it.
Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop - http://eisenbergsnyc.com/