Arts & Entertainment

Restaurant Spotlight: Celebrity Delly

Celebrity Delly likes to look, sound and smell like an “authentic New York Deli.” Having been to a few New York delis in my time, I can safely say that the idea of a New York Deli is a stereotype that has been perpetuated for far too long. However, Celebrity Delly gets a pass for a few reasons.

 

IMG_0981I’ve been going to Celebrity Delly for quite some time. I hadn’t gone in a while for some reason, but since the weather was slightly cool and I was running out of places in Falls Church to review, I figured the time was nigh. Also, it’s almost Thanksgiving, and I have to practice shoving large amounts of high-calorie foods into my gullet. Although I look like I’m at the top of that game and don’t need any practice, like any athlete, I have to stay sharp.

Celebrity Delly likes to look, sound and smell like an “authentic New York Deli.” Having been to a few New York delis in my time, I can safely say that the idea of a New York Deli is a stereotype that has been perpetuated for far too long. However, Celebrity Delly gets a pass for a few reasons.

1. It was founded by a Mr. Chuck Rossler in 1976, and therefore is not part of any of the waves of New York glamorizations that have occurred during my lifetime.

2. The food is big, authentic and delicious.

When I was but a lad, breakfast at Celebrity Delly was a miraculous thing with pancakes larger than life itself. Seriously, these pancakes are huge and delicious with a perfectly crispy pancake edge that I love so very much. Most places don’t have crispy fried edges on their pancakes, which makes me sadder than Pagliaccio at a “No Clowns Allowed” convention. But Celebrity Delly does, and that alone earned them my undying loyalty.

On to lunch. I’m not going to ignore the fact that Celebrity Delly has been inching their prices up in the past few years. Maybe quality ingredients are harder to come by, or maybe they needed a lot of money to pay for the Wi-Fi and the giant neon sign in their window that advertises the fact that they have Wi-Fi. Whatever the reason, these sandwiches and lunch items will set you back a bit. However, these aren’t a bunch of small, sissy, flavorless Subway-style sandwiches. The Elliot Segal (yes, they apparently named a sandwich after the guy from Elliot in the Morning) is a large pile of pastrami and corned beef covered in provolone cheese, coleslaw and Russian dressing on sourdough. If you’re thinking of getting maybe a small artisan health-food dish, please go somewhere else so I don’t have to be embarrassed when I overhear your order.

The side dishes are basically meals unto themselves. The onion rings are large and in charge, with enough crisp to prevent them from softening up like lesser onion rings would after an hour or so. If they could somehow make them a bit spicier (which might be possible, as they offer catering services), then I would be the luckiest man-boy in the world.

The matzah ball soup is chicken noodle soup, but with the addition of a giant dough ball. This may sound like an attempt by the chefs to be cheap by avoiding having to make two different soups, but the end result is great. This is quintessential New York/Jewish comfort food, and even though I am neither of those things, I would take this over regular chicken soup any day of the week.

I can already see that you’re desperate to get some rich, thick, hearty heart-stopping food before you have to eat lightly and delicately in front of your in-laws during Thanksgiving. So spend the dough, go to Celebrity Delly, and leave way too satisfied for your own good.

Hours:

Monday – Saturday: 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Sunday: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.