Header image courtesy of Fat Chad’s (Facebook)
When people think of New York City, they imagine the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, or Central Park. Some people think of gangster flicks and, of course, celebrities, like Bella Hadid and Taylor Swift, casually walking down the streets. Some people may think of its hip-hop scene and its influence through the rest of the world, from designers such as Dapper Dan and legendary rapper The Notorious BIG.
However, there are also some others who think of the little things, in particular, the neighbourhood bodega on the corner of any street, selling decadent delicacies such as the chopped cheese or a deli-style sandwich to your liking. Or even a delicatessen, chopping up and whipping out some quality pastrami sandwiches. In a city 8,000 miles away from New York, it may be difficult finding these ‘deli-style’ sandwiches that remind us so much of why New York is so special. To make things easy, we have compiled a list of places for you to grab a New York-inspired deli sandwich right here in Hong Kong.
Established in 2016, Morty’s is a home away from home for New Yorkers in Hong Kong. This delicatessen is a chic and modern take on the classic delis that line streets all throughout New York. Open for all three meals of the day, all of its meats are traditionally aged, cured, and smoked in-house.
Morty’s is particularly proud of the quality ingredients used in its recipes, such as the addition of American hickory and cherrywood chips during the smoking process to bring out sweet and hearty flavours within the meat. Some delicious items that Morty’s is well-known for are its classic Pastrami Sandwich ($120), a flavourful package that beautifully reveals the result of the delicate ageing process. Another popular dish is their Reuben Sandwich ($130), which comes with their house-smoked pastrami, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and a tangy Thousand Island dressing on rye bread.
Serving up American comfort food since 2001, Main Street Deli may be one of the oldest restaurants in Hong Kong to offer New York-inspired delicacies. From iconic deli dishes such as Matza Ball Soup ($98) and Cauliflower & Ham Mac N’ Cheese ($118), there is definitely something for everyone on the menu. Main Street Deli also has their own take on the classic Reuben Sandwich ($118) with pastrami, corned beef, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and housemade Russian dressing sauce.
Besides the seemingly endless selection of hearty American fare on their menu, they also have outrageously delicious milkshakes you must try. Perennial favourites include the Toasted Marshmellow Chocolate Monster Shake ($88), which comes stacked with toasted marshmallows, cereal, chocolate sauce, and a whipped cream mixture for an indulgent and sweet beverage.
Main Street Deli, Lower Lobby Level, The Langham, 8 Peking Road, Tsim Sha Tsui | (+852) 2132 7898
The Diner is a classic American Diner located Arbuthnot Road in Central that provides a traditional American Diner experience. Their area of expertise is in creating exceptional burgers such as their Penny Burger which consists of lettuce, tomato, dill pickles & mustard mayo, or opt-out for their monstrous Skyscraper Burger, topped with four 6oz patties piled high, five slices of Monterey Jack, pulled pork, bacon, caramelized onions, dill pickles, tomato, lettuce and Dinner Sauce.
Although burgers are what they are most known for, they also serve up sandwiches to evoke memories of New York. Try The McCarthy ($98), a stupendous grilled cheese sandwich of ham, cheddar cheese, mozzarella, and Monterey Jack on sourdough bread, or their Willie Nelson ($98), a rich medley of cheddar cheese and bourbon bacon jam melted onto a griddled sourdough.
The Diner, G/F, Shiu King Court, 4–8 Arbuthnot Road, Central | (+852) 2798 8219
From the people who brought you the triple threat of BlackSalt, Brut!, and Pondi comes their newest venture: Fat Chad’s. The concept of this chic and vibrant restaurant is to capture the essence of New York’s multicultural atmosphere through their food, taking inspiration from the bodegas of the Big Apple—neighbourhood convenience stores that sell everyday necessities, snacks, and deli sandwiches made to go that can be found on almost every street corner of New York.
Fat Chad’s offers classics such as the infamous Chopped Cheese ($115), Reuben Sandwich ($120), and B.E.C ($110), their version of a bacon and egg sandwich. Other must-tries include their innovative sandwiches, such as their Double Stack ($125), a pulled lamb burger with mint and pomegranate chimichurri, yoghurt, and olive tapenade, all combined in a beer naan flatbread. Aside from all the glorious sandwiches they serve, Fat Chad’s also crafts its own homemade ice cream.
Fat Chad’s, G/F, 119B Second Street, Sai Ying Pun | (+852) 5536 9665
Schragels launched itself onto the Hong Kong food scene in 2014 and has been supplying hotels, restaurants, food and beverage groups, and the people of Hong Kong and Macau with authentic New York-style bagels ever since. Founded by Rebecca Schrage, whose father is Jewish American, she takes inspiration for Schragels from her grandparents, who ran a Jewish deli in New York.
All of its bagels are made fresh every morning, using recipes that stem from Schrage’s own family, passed down from generation to generation. Among its bagels and bagel sandwiches, one that stands out is their SchReuben ($90), which comes in the form of a bagel filled with beef pastrami, brown mustard, sauerkraut, and Swiss cheese.
Schragels, 37 Graham Street, Central | (+852) 9667 3709