Sunday, May 06, 2007


704 S Alvarado St
Los Angeles

So I finally go to Langer's. This the self proclaims world's best pastrami. Well if you think of the world as between 7th and Alvarado St, that maybe true. But this is not even close to being the best pastrami.

I ordered the pastrami sandwich, $10.25. I bite into the sandwich to see what all the hype is about. I find this to be one of the fattiest pastrami sandwiches around. I know brisket is full of fat but the curing process is suppose to get rid of the fat. Ok they cut the pastrami thicker than most delis. Does that make it better? Who cares how thick or thin they cut the meat, if the meat isn't any good.

Service is good. I wasn't waiting for anything.

Langers is vastly overrated. It's a good sandwich, but it's not the best pastrami sandwich I've ever had. I much prefer Brent's and Canter's. If I'm in the area I would go back.

Most people get curb sided service. There is a parking lot, free with validation, about a block away. There is a security guard patrolling the parking lot. This area is fine. But there are mostly Latinos there and most don't speak English. The ones who do are trying to sell you fake passports, ID's and driver's license. It's not the part of LA that will make the travel brochures but it's nothing people should be overly concerned about.

Update April 12, 2008.

I went back to Langers to give their pastrami another try and for some better pictures for readers of The New Diner.

Again, I wasn't overwhelmed by the pastrami. It is good. But not the greatest pastrami I have ever had. The meat is a bit fatty and salty. Ok, I know pastrami is from the brisket, a cut of beef that is full of fat. I also know they brine the meat with salt water. But it is a bit too salty for me.

Update Oct. 29, 2009.

I went back to Langers today and wanted to try something different. Since it has finally been feeling like fall, I tried the half soup and sandwich, $11.95, with a bowl of matzo ball soup and half a pastrami sandwich.

The matzo ball soup was hot and the broth had a nice chicken flavor. The matzo balls were nice and soft. I was impressed.

The pastrami sandwich was the usual, good but not the greatest. One thing now, I noticed the rye bread has a much harder crust. I hate that. For me bread should not be hard as a rock. Good thing I had the matzo ball soup to dip the sandwich into, that soften up the rock hard rye bread.

Service was bad. Ok, I understand it was the lunch hour. But our server was barely around. He didn't come around to refill drinks. I noticed the rest of the tables got lemon in their water. Our waters did not have any lemons. Our table was missing brown mustard. Not a big deal since I don't put that on my sandwich. But not good either.

The hostess who took our name and called us when our table was ready, was fine. But the hostess who walked us to our table was bad. She walked by our table and didn't say anything but she stopped at the table next to us and asked how was everything. Then she asked another table and asked them, how was everything. What kind of service is that? Terrible.

I'll admit Langers gets through the lunch crowd very quickly but service was bad on this visit.