Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Manny's - A Chicago Tradition

A Bounty of Corned Beef
Manny's Deli in Chicago can trace it's roots back to 1942, when it started dishing out traditional Jewish deli fare near the historic Maxwell Street Market (a historic open air street market). It is one of only a few remaining family run cafeterias today. You know when you come here that you're not just getting a helping of hearty food, you're getting a side of Chicago history.

Upon first glance Manny's isn't anything special. The South Loop neighborhood has transformed considerably over the years, and with the addition of some big box stores, Binny's and a Whole Foods nearby the location has become more desirable. Once inside you're in...a cafeteria. You closely examine the menu, grab a tray, order, get a receipt, chow down on your feast, and then pay before exiting the establishment. Old school? Yes and you've gotta love it.

Matzoh ball soup & pastrami
The pastrami is smoky, salty and sliced paper thin. I don't even like pastrami so much and I'm left craving Manny's hot pastrami on challah bread. Corned beef is another story. I LOVE corned beef. Grew up eating it at my local deli back in Cleveland, Corky & Lenny's. It's good there, but ask for it extra thin at Manny's on rye bread and it's a whole other ball game. The latkes (potato pancakes) are what keep me coming back. I make my own at home, but have never seen anything like the ones they serve here. These latkes are almost an inch thick! Warm potato on the inside crispy on the outside. Add a bit of applesauce and you're in business.


  1. Gotta love that kinda place! Food made just right described just right! Thanks

  2. Very tastey blog! I'm a bit offended though I didn't get a shout-out, given I'm the one that introduced you to Manny's.

  3. ...and a VERY big thank you to Jonno for introducing me to Manny's :)

  4. that matza ball soup looks gooood! i've never been to manny's--let's go sometime!