Feldman’s Deli

by Kelsey

Everyone is very opinionated about their Jewish delis (I lived in L.A. so I get it) but I’ll just give it to you all straight. If you’re craving a very good pastrami on rye in Utah’s hot desert far away from the meccas of Jewish cuisine, you’re lucky. Because Feldman’s Deli is bringing the heat.

Over the years it has become a community anchor, bringing the locals together with live music and their popular “Old Jews Telling Jokes” comedy nights. We live in the neighborhood and it used to be when explaining our location, I’d orient people by telling them we live by Cactus and Tropicals (just across the street from the deli, and another neighborhood staple). But now I just throw out that we’re down the street from Feldman’s and everyone immediately knows where we are.

We visited Feldman’s when they first opened and loved the food but saw it needed to work out some growing pains in the service department. Gave it some time and visited again for lunch and breakfast and were extremely pleased with how it has matured.

The food was exactly how we remembered it – TOTALLY AMAZING. There are more adventurous specials (our visit featured a Hemingway Sloppy Joe – ham and beef tongue) but you can never go wrong with their signature, the Sloppy Joe (double-decker pastrami and corned beef).

You can’t help but groan your way through the Sloppy Joe, it’s that good – cole slaw that’s not too saucy, not too sweet, thinly-sliced beef and pastrami, excellent spices, and gigantic portions. The undoubtedly homemade pickle is very unique and crunchy. The stack of extra napkins from the server was handy. I wanted to order an appetizer but wisely did not – I barely got through half my sandwich even though I was starving coming in (it’s comparable to the other sandwiches in price and probably twice the size, FYI). The rye bread is soft, fresh, and with a good balance of rye.

The hand-cut fries are stellar: crunchy, salty (but not too much so) and delicious. Our first time we ordered a knish (served with mustard) because they ran out of potato pancakes and it was good but not my favorite.

Check the paper menu on the tables for specials of the day (our server failed to mention them and it was hidden in the table holder so you could barely see it). They have a good selection of local Wasatch beers, too, which is a great addition.

The service has really stepped up since their start – great, professional service balanced just right between attentive and privacy-respecting. We promptly got our food (important at lunch) and water refills were plentiful, and children get a cup with a lid (it’s the little things).

My husband and I both agreed that though it can get very crowded at lunch, it doesn’t feel that way. The acoustic space bounces a lot of sound so that you sometimes have to lean forward to hear your conversation, but the talk from other tables and music is not loud enough to interfere and it feels peaceful in there even during the busy lunch hour.

When we visited for breakfast, it was quieter and we were seated right away. Their bagels and schmear are delicious and while I’m more of a whipped cream cheese kind of gal, I appreciated the thick layer of traditional spread nonetheless.

In the beginning the ambiance was a little confusing: modern concrete floors, white antler light fixtures overhead, and stenciled tree branches on dark gray walls. But also rocking some sports-bar vibe with TVs on the walls. Overall, though, the restaurant is clean, grown-up but not stuffy, and fun.

Check the hours – we always want to go on Sunday or Monday but it’s closed on both. Breakfast is served until 10:30am.

Very impressed by the growth we’ve seen in Feldman’s. We can’t wait to come back again and try more on the menu – and hopefully attend one of the live music performances during some evenings.

– Kelsey Ramos-Conroy

This review was originally written in December 2014 and updated in 2020.

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