Eastside Market and Italian Deli at 1013 Alpine St. is a small and rather obscure eatery just outside Chinatown. It is one of my frequent lunchtime stops and where I had lunch today. This establishment has existed there under the same family ownership for 29 years. For lunch there are hot and cold sandwiches, soup, cold cut plates, hot plates and pasta served with meat balls or Italian sausage. The sandwiches, priced at about $5, are piled high and heavy with meats, cheese and/ or other items on standard size sandwich rolls supplied by the Frisco Bakery.
The market part of this business had been declining while the sandwich, lunch and catering part was rapidly increasing. As a result, over the last few years most of the grocery shelves were removed to make way for additional seating. And no wonder. The food is satisfying and the place is designed with speed and efficiency in mind. It is one of the few places in or near downtown where you can find convenient free parking nearby and also get service that is quick enough to suit a lunch break schedule. Orders are placed from a service counter and each sandwich or lunch plate is quickly prepared to order. Ive almost never waited more than a few minutes even when there was a lengthy line. There are about 8-10 indoor tables and a couple more have been added outside.
The sandwich I had today was the #7 combination of hot roast beef (brisket), pastrami, provolone cheese and roasted peppers. And it is so-oo good! The roast beef brisket is cooked fresh daily. Other favorite sandwiches at Eastside are the combination sausage, meatball, provolone and roasted peppers and the eggplant parmagiana. Numerous bottled drinks are available as well as a self-service soda fountain. There is also a condiment table that includes three kinds of peppers as accompaniments for your sandwich or other food. Nothing fancy at all but a well thought out and very satisfying lunch spot.