Food - Drink
The Origins Of The Jewish Deli
By NATASHA BAILEY
Jewish Delis are the best places to find those classic meats you can't get anywhere else, like hot pastrami, corned beef sandwiches, roasted turkey and beef, traditional pickled herring, and hand-cut lox. Jewish delis in the United States can trace their origins to the mass migrations of European Jews in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
According to PBS, 2.5 million Jewish people migrated to the U.S. and 60% of those settled in New York City's lower east side, bringing with them a rich and delicious culinary history. Places like the world-famous Katz's Delicatessen opened in the city in 1888, and have been catering to the tastes of kosher and eastern European consumers ever since.
The growth of delis in the city was made all the easier due to the previous German immigrants who had already popularized foods like sausages, frankfurters, sauerkraut, pickles, and cold cuts. This made people flock to the delis to get their fill of Old World fare and thus, becoming an integral part of America's culinary identity.