Only because my favorite Deli (Rachel's Nosherai) is now closed on Sunday due to a death in the family, and because my favorite cousins suggested it, we four had brunch today at the 19th street branch of the 4th Street Famous Deli. This is the perfect number of people to share a meal at the Famous, since its owner is busy charging exorbitant prices for enormous portions of mediocre food, that are edible only by a family of four.
When we entered this establishment, we saw a bemused couple seated in front of a mound of corn beef hash the size of a small infant, about twelve inches long and four inches high.. We commented to them that it was enough to feed a family of four but they disagreed and showed us that it was more than enough for a family of eight.
My wife and I agreed to share a single smoked fish sandwich, by ordering an extra portion of pumpernickel. I ordered my favorite, jumbo whitefish on rye with cream cheese tomato and onion. My cousin remarked, only half in jest" Remember to ask them to remove the tail".
What came to the table was a fresh four inch slice of jumbo white fish, freshly cut of the fish both sides, untouched by human hands. Having worked in a number of Delis I proceeded to filet the fish myself , carefully cutting along the backbone inside and then removing the spine and ribs on one side and picking out the spineless ribs on the other and then pulling the skin away from the two fresh moist filets.
The rye and pumpernickel was sliced much too thick for our tastes. About a half inch thick. I then smeared the cream cheese on the bread, added the fish and the tomato and onion, sliced the two sandwiches in half and presented one on my wife's plate. The resulting sandwiches I had created were delightful, made from wholesome ingredients. But I wondered why I was paying the Deli for making my own sandwiches.