There's been substantial debate about Golden Valley's newest culinary venture, Mort's Delicatessen. I've read everything from the place being a total fake, to naming it the closest thing to a New York style deli outside of the East Coast. I'm not here to comment on authenticity (Carnegie Deli meats are a good start, though), but rather to decipher whether or not this is a good place to grab a sandwich. You can argue for either side, but one thing I will not attempt to diffuse is the fact that Mort's is located next to one of the sleaziest strip malls I have ever seen.
Mort's is not short on choices, serving breakfast in addition to a staggering list of starters, salads, soups, sandwiches, burgers, sides, platters, entrees and family style meals. After a few recommendations, I chose the half Carnegie Deli Hot Pastrami and Roast Beef Sandwich. Now, the damage on this sandwich is substantial. The half version costs you $9.99 and adding on a slice of swiss will cost you $1.29. I found out the sandwich is well with the monetary hurdle, wielding a comedic 14oz of meat. Again, argue the authenticity if you will, but the portions are straight out of the Big Apple.
When I opened up my to-go box I was astounded at the sheer size of the sandwich and its rich aroma. I can promise you that eating this is no less then a two-handed effort. The marble rye was soft and delicious with the perfect amount of bitterness. The bread did all it could to contain the the thick slices of smoky and spicy pastrami. The meat was well marbled, perfectly cooked and easily the best I have tasted. The tender pastrami was the hero of the sandwich despite a pretty strong effort from the lean and earthy roast beef. They topped the sandwich with mayo (where's the mustard?) and a nice crisp assortment of onions, tomatoes and lettuce to add some contrast to the lush and flavorful meats. Lastly, the melted swiss offered a nice smooth finish to the salty proteins.
Sandwich Rating: Killer. At the end of the day, a sandwich doesn't need to be perfectly authentic to be great, and to me this sandwich was second to none in the MN deli category. I'll be back to Mort's for ocassions dining only because despite the fact that the colossal sandwich was really good, I can't endorse it as a part of a well-balanced diet.
Epic Sandwich copyright 2009 by Teddy Hobbins