Lew’s NY Deli Open in Paoli

October 2nd, 2007

Lew’s is now open, and they have a website!


41 Responses to “Lew’s NY Deli Open in Paoli”

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  1. Karen says:

    Lew’s NY Deli in Paoli is CLOSED now!! Anybody know why?

  2. Ed Kessler says:

    Michael Says: Their Corned Beef is some of the best I’ve ever tasted. Their own spice is just right and they do sell it by the pound, which is about what Murray’s charges. I agree that they are better organized then they were but I was last in around 10:45 AM which was before the lunch crowd. I am now making good use of both Lou’s and Murray’s

  3. Michael says:

    I’ve been there several times now, and while they were a little disorganized in the beginning, with unexplained missing items — now they’ve become consistent — and become one of my favorite places. Tradititonal NY-Jewish style corned beef, pastrami, brisket, kasha b’varnsikers, pickle bar, etc. I don’t care where they’re made, but I do care what they taste like – and they taste like home (I’m an expartriate NYer). I’ve also been impressed by the friendliness of the owners and they’ve gone out of the way for me — giving me tastes, making me coffee late.
    I’m only unhappy with their hours — the Malvern-Paoli area could use a place like this open 24×7.

  4. Jim in Paoli says:

    I tried Lew’s again and will not be back.We had lunch at 2 pm on Saturday.
    I have been 5 times since they opened. This time I picked up a corned beef special for my wife. I had pastrami reuben.
    The corned beef was so fatty that my wife choked on the meat. She took 4 oz of meat out of the sandwich.
    The biggest offense is that the bread was stale!
    The bread was stale! I can’t get over it. I had a roast pork sandwich a few weeks ago that was served, at 2.30 pm, on a stale roll!
    There is no excuse for this.
    (The roast pork is cut into cubes and is very hard to eat, and has too much seasoning.)
    The CB special was ordered with swiss cheese. It did not arrive withswiss cheese. There was no one else waiting in line when I ordered. Again, no excuse.
    The place needs organization.

  5. ddrn says:

    Lew’s did have a “bumpy” start, but it seems that the kinks have smoothed out nicely. Food is very good, more corned beef on my reuben than 2 people can eat in a sitting. The Panini’s are varied in contents; the roast beef, cheddar & horseradish is fabulous. Lew’s will make any changes or substitutions as requested by their customers. The pickle bar is so creative, varied, and complimentary with orders. The menu is very extensive. I have found it best to call ahead, not a long wait that way. They are always busy~that says something good! The staff is polite, and very customer oriented. Give them a try! Go back if you were there in the beginning, you’ll be pleased.

  6. Ed Kessler says:

    Leanne: The Murray’s in Berwyn dosn’t sell Kasha and Bowties and never has according to the owner. You must have been in the one in Bala (different member of the family) which might explain the rude waitresses. Other possibility was you were in West Chester before they moved. They did have kasha and some bad service down there.
    I did have a lunch at Lew’s and the Kasha was quite good, the corned beef was really good and the brisket was good but not quite as good as Murray’s in Berwyn. At ll:45 AM on Thursday they had a small line ordering and even more people waiting for their orders. I spent less than ten minutes in line but twenty minutes waiting for the food. I held a table for that 20 minutes as the restaurant filled up leaving people with food looking for a table. By that time, there were about 10 people in line and 10 checks waiting to be filled. The people running the place seemed very nice but it wasn’t a relaxing experience. If a working person wants to be back at work or time (assuming they work within 5 min.) they will need a 45 min. lunch for take-out and 60 min. for eat-in. However they do make a good Egg Cream which Murray’s does not offer.
    By they way, why do some people not want this site to be used as a chat room for discussing restaraunts, food, and even beer. I have seen a lot of helpful advice given out on “chat rooms” from “Where is a good place in King of Prussia to take a business client” to “I am from out of town and would like to know where to eat in Pa. Dutch Country.” They both got lots of good anwswers. What is wrong with providing that kind of advice?

  7. Ed Kessler says:

    Yes I know –it’s “mush” not “much”. We need a spellcheck on this thing. No I’m not going to do a word doccument every time I do this.

  8. Ed Kessler says:

    Fjordstone: I can’t believe you have never had kasha and bowties (aka Kasha Varnishkas) with brisket gravy. We all know if you keep pasta (bowties) hot all day they will turn to much. You can keep plain pasta cold all day and reheat it in hot water but they not possible with the kasha so why not heat it in gravy. Sounds like a plan to me.
    The Carnegie Deli in NY has an item on their menu: Stuffed Derma (Kishka) with kasha varnishkas and GRAVY. Now there is a dish designed to cut down on our population if ever I have heard of one.

  9. Fjordstone says:

    Kasha and bowties in…beef gravy? I’m a Jewish girl from Brooklyn, and I have never, ever, ever seen it done that way. Now I’m glad they were out of it the day I was there! Incidentally, Leanne, I wasn’t there on their first day. They’d been open at least a week and a half, maybe more like two weeks, when I went in. So by that point they should have had an idea of how busy it could get. Also, I’m no snob: eating on paper plates, in general, doesn’t bother me. But I also don’t expect to see a hot, cheesy, mushy dish served in an uncoated paper boat that is too small for the serving. There’s just no way that that can end well (and it didn’t).

  10. Ed Kessler says:

    Both places told me where they got their chopped liver and whitefish salad –neither mentioned Don’s–that’s Murray’s in Bala not Berwy that uses Don’s.(or at least use to). Nither are storemade–liked Murray’s much better. The two Murray’s are related by blood and family experience but they are not run as one and seem to use different supppliers.

  11. Leanne says:

    I don’t agree that forks and plates make the deli.
    I think that Lew’s have only been open about a month and when I talked to them, they said they had planned a “slow open”, but instead got slammed the first day. They agreed that they had some issues in the beginning due to the fact that they weren’t ready for it to be that busy that fast, but to compare it to Murray’s?? Yuck!
    Murray’s brags about the fact that they sell Don’s Salads! That stuff is the most institutional tasting stuff on the planet. If that oversalted, chemical tasting stuff is your taste as opposed to the homemade salads that Lew sells, then you are right, you won’t like Lew’s.
    They also have the best turkey – it is REAL turkey and not the watery lunch meat that everyone else sells.
    Because everything is homemade, they don’t have every side every day, but they ones they do have are awesome. As far as the Kasha and bowties, I had that at Murrays once and it was more like Kasha and Mush. I complained and was told that the bowties fall apart because they are kept warm all day. Lew’s does it right – they heat it to order in beef gravy and then strain the gravy into a small side container and if you do happen to have a complaint, at least they care about your satisfaction. I enjoy table service, but it just isn’t that kind of place. I don’t mind paying for a decent sandwich, but I saw my waitress twice at Murrays and when I complained about the food, no one cared about my satisfaction.
    Besides, REAL corned beef and Pastrami can only be found at Lew’s. Murray’s doesn’t cook their own.

    By the way, the owner’s are JUDY and Lew, not Julie!

  12. Ed Kessler says:

    Dear Administrator: It is time for you to put your two cents into this debate. Or “for two cents plain” as the case might be.

  13. Fjordstone says:

    Hi, Ed,

    Being a Jewish girl from Brooklyn, I do know what a good Jewish deli is! I just meant that if you’re not looking for the corned beef/pastrami experience, and Berwyn is potentially too far for some for a lunch break if you only have an hour, in _that_ case, Our Deli is a better bet than Lew’s.

    However, having said that, I’ve just returned from a late lunch at Murray’s. I work for myself, so my lunch hour is my own, and I happened to have to go to Devon today, so on my way home, I stopped in. WONDERFUL! Talk about a sandwich! I got a turkey reuben (my ‘benchmark’ sandwich for any deli), and it was piled high, very generous with _all_ ingredients! And delicious, too! Better yet, they included pickles in the bag without being asked, and they were the _right kind_ of pickles (as opposed to the lackluster pickle bar at Lew’s). And they’ve got the full line of Doctor Brown’s sodas, including diet. All the smoked fish comes from a smokehouse in Brooklyn (Acme Smokehouse). Plus, the guys behind the counter ‘shmooze’ with you, so I felt very much at home. :-)

    While there, I took a look at the menu for Bistro M. Next week is my birthday, and we have a reservation at the Marshalton Inn (which we haven’t been to in years), but I may just decide to go to Bistro M instead. Great decor (warm, yet modern), and the menu looks terrific, very upscale!

    Amy (a/k/a Fjordstone)

  14. Ed Kessler says:

    Fjordstone: “Our Deli” in Paoli (the Black Angus) is a good American Deli and a fine place to go for ham and eggs in the morning. Murray’s, on the other hand, is a Jewish Style Deli. The last time I went in there looking for corned beef (several years ago) they showed me a wide cut of meat which wasn’t the narrow brisket used in jewish style corned beef. The entire menu is different. It’s as different as Murray’s is from the deli section of Carlino’s–a great place by the way. A huge Carlino’s just opened in West Chester accross the street from the old Murray’s. I hope they do well they are wonderful people.

  15. Fjordstone says:

    Ah, so it’s really Bistro M — that’s why I keep missing it. I’ve only seen the Bistro M sign. Thanks, Ed. (By the way, it’s “Handel’s,” like the composer of “The Messiah” — Georg Friedrich Handel.) :-)

  16. Ed Kessler says:

    Fjordstone: It’s right accross from that Ice Cream place. I think it’s called Handles. It’s that odd intersection.

  17. Fjordstone says:

    I keep hearing about Murray’s in Berwyn, but haven’t seen it as I’ve driven past on Route 30. Where are they? As for using Lew’s for takeout, why bother when you have Our Deli in town, and they have a long history of getting your orders right, having things in stock, using real plates/utensils, etc. etc.?

  18. Ed Kessler says:

    Why are so many more people out there trying Lou’s rather than Murray’s dispite all the complaints about Lou’s. The only two complaints about Murray’s I have noticed is one person objected to paying $11.95 for a Corned Beef Reuben and another didn’t like the idea of a deli looking like a bistro. Rather mild in compaired to the complaints of small paper boats, plastic knives and confused service at Lou’s. Try both and I think you might continue to use Lou’s for a quick take-out pastrami sandwich but go to Murray’s to relax and enjoy a good Philadelphia deli with in a nice bistro setting. GREAT PARKING AT MURRAY’S- INDOOR

  19. Jill says:

    I paid $9 for a specialty sandwich with no zip to it at all. The matzo ball soup was not good either and the place was chaotic. The atmosphere was pleasant but they need to get things smoothed out with regular table service and a separate line for takeout.

  20. Fjordstone says:

    Being an expatriate New Yorker (born in Brooklyn, in fact), I was _really_ excited for this place to open.

    I finally managed to go there last week, and had a very disappointing lunch. They’d been open about a week, and while I can forgive how slow they were, the overall experience was so unsatisfying that it’ll be a long time before I go back — and they’re about two minutes from my house. They were out of one of their standard menu items that both my friend and I had ordered, and it was a bit chaotic how they handled it. They asked if we wanted to substitute something else, and we both said, “No, we’ll take our money back.” When I went up to get some pickles, they corralled me at the pickle bar and handed me back my cash. I reminded them that my friend (who was still at the table) also needed to be paid back. They did eventually get her money to her, but we had to ask about it. Then there was this mass confusion over the coffee. We didn’t get our cups, which was the least of it. It’s far too complicated to explain how wrong that went! Then they called us to pick up our order (you order at the counter and wait to be called). I had a sandwich and a side — and the side was a _very_ skimpy serving. It only cost $1.75, true — but it was served in the kind of plastic cup you’d usually get a pat of butter in! So, I’ll have to disagree with Leanne who says, above, that they “don’t nickle and dime you for the extras…” :-p

    Next problem: my friend ordered cheese blintzes which, if you’ve never had them, are mushy, soft crepes filled with mushy, soft cheese. And hot. And they served these as they serve everything else there: in a paper boat, of the kind you’d expect to get filled with fries at Coney Island. I get that they’re trying to give the place that Brooklyn/Coney Island vibe, but how can you serve hot, mushy, cheese-engorged blintzes in a PAPER BOAT? They were piled one on top of another, and my friend attempted to cut them (with plastic utensils — all they have there), and ended up with a mountain of hot, mushy cheese and a falling-apart paper boat. Terrible.

    The food was not bad, but nothing remarkable. I get a better turkey Reuben at Our Deli, right up the block from Lew’s. (I don’t eat red meat anymore, so I can’t comment on the veracity of the corned beef and pastrami.) Honestly, I don’t think they were ready to open. They need some more time to get things up to speed there. And they’ve simply got to switch to either real plates, or a better quality, plastic-coated paper ware.

    I joked with them about not being open on Sundays, being a Jewish deli, and they were quick to correct me: they are a _New York-style_ deli, not a Jewish deli. This is made clear by looking at the menu and seeing “bowties and kasha” rather than its real name in Grandma’s kitchen and any _real_ New York deli: kasha varnishkes. Oh, one positive thing: there are egg creams on the menu, and I noted that the chocolate syrup they use is the correct kind (Fox’s U-Bet — the only _real_ egg creams are made with Fox’s!).

    I don’t know what to tell you. I certainly wouldn’t recommend it. Unless their corned beef and pastrami really is to die for, just go to Our Deli, where at least the service is reliable and they use REAL plates and utensils!

  21. Ed Kessler says:

    Leanne–No argument about the corned beef or pastrami and you are right they should be fatty. On the other hand the chopped liver and whitefish salad I tasted were several levels below Murray’s in Berwyn. I don’t know what Lew’s Bagels are like by Murray’s has a terrific bagel. Murray’s also has the various smoked fishes I have come to expect in a Philadephia Deli. The NY delis that specialize in smoked fish are different than the ones that specialize in meat. eg. Russ and Daughters, Barney Greengrass and Murray’s King of Sturgeon. In Philadelphia they are the same.

  22. Leanne says:

    What planet are you people from. The corned beef and pastrami are NOT Boar’s Head. I have been there several times and there is always a pot of corned beef cooking on the stove. As far as fatty, yes any idiot knows that REAL NY corned beef is fatty. Find a deli that tells you that they “Cook” their own pastrami and they are lying and stupid. Pastrami is not cooked but smoked and very few delis have the smokers in house. I was there yesterday, my 4th time in the 3 weeks they have been opened and there was chopped liver flying out the door. Any new place will tell you that it takes a while to educate the employees. If I want extra anything on my sandwich, I just ask the owners, Julie and Lew and they are great! And they don’t nickle and dime you for the extras…You can have Murray’s 60 cents for a piece of cheese! Please!

  23. Amanda says:

    Ordered the corned beef special. I enjoyed the pickle bar. Large portion, great tasting sandwich, but very fatty meat.

  24. Ed Kessler says:

    Corned Beef, Pastrami, or Brisket — go no further at Lew’s.

  25. Mary says:

    I placed a to go order over the phone, a caesar salad with shrimp from the menu, they said they don’t offer shrimp due to cost, ok, so I ordered a ceasar with chicken. When I got it home and opened it up, there was romaine lettuce, a container of grated parmesan, dressing and chicken. Note, one of the MAIN ingredients is croutons, there was not a one. The chicken was not even lukewarm, it obviously came straight from the fridge. Ok, no big, I heated it up in the oven, but the lack of croutons for an overpriced box of lettuce ($8.50) and cold chicken is ridiculous. My friend’s salad (a big salad, again from the menu) was also very disappointing, iceberg lettuce and squash with a couple of tomatoes. I can safely say, neither of us or our families will darken their door again.

  26. Jim says:

    Went there yesterday. Out of chopped liver. Had a corned beef special and that same turkey sandwich that Sue had. Both sandwiches were sub-par for what is touted as a New York deli. Everything seemed to be pre-packaged, not homemade. $27 for two sandwiches and two sides served in paper boats with wax paper and plastic untensils. The little napkins were useless. And any true New York deli makes the specials “sloppy” had to ask for extra slaw and Russian.

    I probably wouldn’t have noticed all this if it was just named Lew’s Deli. But, throw “New York” in there and you have to live up to a whole new level of expectations.

    I grew up going to Murray’s and Hymie’s. If Lew’s expects to compete with the new Murray’s they need to step it up.

  27. Ed Kessler says:

    Sue: glad to hear they are taking the chopped liver off the menu–the chopped liver I had should be taken off the planet. I suspect your cole slaw comes from the same supplier. If you don’t go there for pastrami, corned beef or brisket you might as well go to WaWa. If the Murray’s in Berwyn uses the same suppliers as the one in Bala I think you will enjoy it. It is run by a different member of the family.

  28. Sue says:

    No chopped liver–said they were taking it off the menu. Roast beef special was bland due to bland coleslaw. Turkey sandwich with stuffing lacked enough cranberry sauce and was overpriced at $9.95. Asked for chicken salad by the pound and the cashier said they would have to weigh it so she never gave it to me. Oh well. Maybe Murray’s will hold more promise.

  29. Ed Kessler says:

    I wonder if they are going to move the Deli’s Walk of Stars? I have a fourth or fifth cousin who has a star there and a dinning room named after her–Molly Picon. I never met her and was never in Second Ave. Always a Carnegie Fan. Can’t get a real egg cream at Second Ave.

  30. Marshall says:

    Good to hear that the beef is corned and the pastrami smoked on site (or nearby).

    According to New York Magazine:
    2nd Avenue Deli
    It’s not on Second Avenue anymore, but everything else will be the same, promise the pastrami pros, and Toidy-Toid and Toid is an excellent address for a delicatessen. 162 E. 33rd St., nr. Third Ave.; 212-677-0606.

    Expected Opening October 2007

  31. Ed Kessler says:

    Marshall- The Pastrami didn’t appear to be Boar’s Head. It seemed to fatty. As to the Corned Beef, when I asked for a half pound they told me their own would not be ready in hour and now they only had Boar’s Head. I don’t know if there are any delis in the area doing their own corned beef or pastrami. Many use a place in West Philadelphia called Scheiman (spelling may be wrong) and some will tell you they do it to their own recipe.
    Has Second Ave. Deli reopened? The closest thing I know to real NYC deli food it Harrold’s NY Deli off Exit 10 of the Jersey TPK. Owner Harrold Jaffe was manager of Carnegie Deli in Secauice NJ in the late 80’s and helped set up their commissary.
    If you really miss NY Deli life I suggest you go to the Chester County Book Store and buy The 2nd Deli Cookbook by Sharon Lebewohl and How to Feed Friends and Influence People- By Milton Parker.

  32. Marshall says:

    I stopped in there yesterday, but didn’t place an order. From the signage I get the impression that all of the deli meats (Corned Beef and Pastrami in particular) are Boar’s Head. Very disappointing! I am a native New Yorker, and have put away many pounds of corned beef and pastrami at the Second Avenue Deli, and will not patronize a so called “New York” deli which unwraps its pastrami from a Boar’s Head shrinkwrap.

    BTW, the Second Avenue Deli is soon reopening at 33rd St. and Third Avenue.

  33. Dave says:

    Chopped Liver: Nope, the chopped liver wasn’t sour for me. Perhaps you just had a bad batch. I have had much better chopped liver, but its good nonetheless.

    (Doesn’t matter too much to me though since my cardiologist would kill me if I had it more than once in a blue moon.)

  34. Papadick says:

    It is intended to alert the public to the fact that what is purported to be a NY Deli closes at 8:00 PM. Non New Yorkers believe that NY city is open 24 hours a day, particularly an establishment that caters to a sit down crowd rather than a clientele that is looking to take home a half-pound of pastrami and some cole slaw salad. It is also information that is NOT included on their web-site.

  35. L.Phillips says:

    Beware? Beware of what….the fact that they close at 8:00 P.M?

  36. Ed Kessler says:

    Chopped Liver Mystery: Sounds like you have good taste in deli so I can only assume your chopped liver was not sour. I let someone else taste mine and they also found it sour. I guess somene had spilled some salad dressing on mine (it was not a sandwich) or it turned bad. If someone else tries it let me know.

  37. Ed Kessler says:

    Murray’s Berwyn new opening date: Wed. October 10th. I suspect they will be open later than 8:00 PM at least the Bistro M part.

  38. Papadick says:

    BEWARE – we went to Paoli Hospital with another couple thinking that we would try the Deli after our visit. We got there at 8:02 PM and they were CLOSED. The hours are not on the website either – but they are on the door and they close at 8:00 PM. BEWARE.

  39. Dave says:

    Food is fabulous! I’ve had their BBQ Brisket, Corned Beef and Pastrami and they were all delicious. Chopped Liver was good too.

    Service is a little slow so far as they get organized (they’ve only been open a week or two) but once that’s tweaked I’ll be there a few times a week.

  40. Ed Kessler says:

    Most sandwiches around $7.95.

  41. Marshall says:

    No prices on website menu? Another source?

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