Exciting news for sandwich aficionados: Wexler’s Deli is joining the lineup at the Santa Barbara Public Market. It debuted in L.A.’s Grand Central Market in 2014 and quickly became an institution. A Santa Monica location followed in 2016, and then, earlier this year, an outpost opened at the Aria hotel in Las Vegas. From Jonathan Gold’s enthusiastic L.A. Times review:
Wexler’s is the only deli I know that actually makes its pastrami on-site: curing the beef belly, smearing it with a crumbly spice paste that includes black pepper and clove, smoking it at a low temperature and then steaming it to tenderness. It is hand-cut to order into thick, bulletproof slabs and layered evenly rather than manipulated into a girthy wedge.
The pastrami is perhaps less consistent than the high-quality industrial product places like Langer’s and Art’s tend to use—it can be crumbly at times—but when it is right, which has been almost all the time lately, it is superb: yielding, succulent and almost impossibly rich; natural contours of the meat curling into the soft bread; the subtle tang of mustard; hints of smoke, garlic and clove.
Founder Mike Kassar says that when the Public Market location opens later this year, we can expect “staples like the OG Pastrami Sandwich, Bagel and Lox, Reuben, and even a bagel that will only be served at the Public Market that has Santa Barbara sea urchin and wasabi caviar.” In the meantime, whet your appetite—literally and figuratively—by following Wexler’s on Instagram.
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