Hobby’s Delicatessen – Newark NJ
One of the only two authentic Kosher Jewish delicatessens left in Newark, Hobby’s has been serving authentic Eastern European food for over 50 years now. The Brommers have been the same owners since 1962. And if you think the place needs an update you are so terribly wrong. This is the real deal, from the inside out. While it is not situated in the most beautiful part of Newark, it is safe and you will see plenty of business people dining there.
The only real updating to the decor are widescreen televisions hanging from the walls alongside Jersey Devils memorabilia. Even the cocktails are so reasonably priced you will wonder if you did not step back in time. I don’t know of any place serving drinks that start at $5, especially top brands. In fact, I never heard of Johnnie Walker Green, and no wonder, its no longer available in most markets. But I am glad I had a taste here at a very reasonable price because I would not have spent money on a full bottle since I am not really a scotch drinker.
Back to the food. On every table is a batch of fresh, delicious home pickled tomatoes, including half and full sour pickles. The pickled tomato I did not care for, it was far too tough, even to cut with a knife. However, the half and full sour pickles were delicious. I like them in very limited quantities, but I knew they were good when I finished both.
For starters, my friend orders the matzoh ball soup, if this is not authentic homemade, I don’t know what is. And for me, I had a potato pancake. Really good potato pancakes are hard to come by. My only regret here is that I ordered one instead of a side order of four. I would have gladly taken 3 home with me. These were the very best potato pancakes I’ve ever had. They were not thin like you usually get, but thick, crispy and delicious. What you see in the background is the #4 combo sandwich, turkey, tongue and swiss cheese.
On the menu they list the #5 Combo Sandwich as what made them famous. And, indeed it was love at first bite. It was so delicious in fact, that I completely ignored the mustard sitting on the table. The combination of corned beef and pastrami was so incredible. On the bottom slice of bread was a very thin layer of Russian dressing (which I normally do not like), and on the top a very thin layer of cole slaw (which I always like separately, but never on my sandwich). But this worked perfectly. You still taste the smokey goodness of the pastrami with just a touch of the condiments.
The service is friendly, fast, and they cater and do takeout as well. In the far background there you see a signed photo of Oprah Winfrey. With or without her approval, this is the very best Kosher Jewish deli you will find, and that includes some of those other famous ones across the river in Manhattan.
Hobby’s Delicatessen www.hobbysdeli.com
32 Branford Avenue, Newark NJ
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