Aug 2011

Langer’s Delicatessen Restaurant – Los Angeles (Westlake)

Langer's Delicatessen Restaurant - Los Angeles

After lunching on two not-so-memorable sandwiches at Bay Cities and The Spice Table, I finally struck sandwich gold at Langer’s Delicatessen. Located across from MacArthur Park on the cusp of Koreatown, Langer’s has been smoking, steaming, and hand-slicing their world famous pastrami for over sixty years.

The Astronomer and I were inspired to make our way here after sampling the amazing smoked meat sandwiches at Schwartz’s in Montréal. While smoked meat and pastrami aren’t exactly the same beast, we were curious to see how the two compared and whether one was superior to the other.

Langer's Delicatessen Restaurant - Los Angeles

Joining us for lunch were our friends and fellow Langer’s newbies Lien and Diana. We were seated at a table fit for four in Joan’s jurisdiction. Even though we only understood every other word she hushed, we all agreed that Joan was hands-down the greatest waitress ever.

Langer's Delicatessen Restaurant - Los Angeles

All three of my dining companions ordered the unadorned hot pastrami sandwich ($12.95). Diana opted for an “extra lean” version that cost an additional $3.25. The sandwiches were served with two spears of dill pickles on the side.

Langer's Delicatessen Restaurant - Los Angeles

Langer’s pastrami is made from whole brisket that’s been rubbed with spices, smoked, and steamed. The pastrami is sliced thick and piled neatly on double-baked rye.

While The Astronomer liked his sandwich very much, he found the seasonings less bold and the meat less rich than the smoked meat in Montréal. Both Lien and Diana reached for the spicy mustard after taking bites without and found that it was just the thing to complement the meat.

Langer's Delicatessen Restaurant - Los Angeles

I couldn’t resist ordering the #19, the most popular sandwich on the menu. Tucked in between two impressively sturdy slices of rye bread were pastrami, Swiss cheese, coleslaw, and Russian dressing. It was a monstrously portioned creation, and I was beyond thrilled to dig into it.

Langer's Delicatessen Restaurant - Los Angeles

Whereas my dining companions needed to add a smear of mustard to their sandwiches, mine arrived dressed to the nines and sensational from top to bottom. It was impossible to discern the pastrami’s flavor and texture amidst all the fixings, but I didn’t care because the entire package was so damn satisfying.

I loved how the meat married with the tangy dressing and coleslaw, while the bread valiantly held together all the saucy stuff. The #19 lived up to the hype and then some. Open wide!

Tamarind Shaved Ice at McArthur Park

Following our fabulous lunch, The Astronomer and I stumbled upon a shaved ice vendor on the edge of MacArthur Park.

Tamarind Shaved Ice at McArthur Park

We ordered one shaved ice drizzled with tart tamarind syrup ($2). It was a perfectly refreshing treat to close out the afternoon. Thanks for restoring my faith in sandwiches, Langer’s.

Langer’s Delicatessen Restaurant
704 South Alvarado Street
Los Angeles, CA 90057
Phone: 213-483-8050

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13 thoughts on “Langer’s Delicatessen Restaurant – Los Angeles (Westlake)

  1. I love the #19. I have friends who say that the only way to go is pastrami by itself, with a touch of mustard. It is certainly great that way (I have sampled my friends’ sandwiches) but I still find myself ordering the 19 every time.

  2. Hey cool I was just there last week too. If you like sauerkraut, there’s a grilled sandwich /w hot pastrami, sauerkraut and cheese. It’s like a patty melt almost. I really like that over the regular #19 which I also tried. Cool website btw

  3. Pastrami Rachels are one of my favorite type of sandwiches..normally I’m not a fan of coleslaw, but it goes so well with pastrami!

  4. I did love this sandwich (that meattt), Katz comparison or not (I’m glad Joan misheard things — where does she get her hair cut??). I want it again! your Russian dressing was hot.

  5. I’ve been craving Langers for 2 weeks–the rye bread, the Russian dressing, and that luscious meat. I even tried to tame the craving at Juniors in West LA one day for lunch. Not. Even. Close.

    AH! I have to go this weekend.

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