Hey. First time posting on the LA board - I'm a regular poster to the DC board, here on business.
I'm out at a Holiday Inn off Ventura Blvd off the 101 in Ventura... today I went out for lunch to a place called Pickles' Deli. Kinda randomly actually, I was looking for a place called the Alamo Grill, accidentally pulled into a parking lot with a Sharkey's because I recognized the name and got a bit confused, then saw the deli, decided I wanted a sandwich, and went in.
All I have to say is, wow.
The pickles were suprisingly not that great (and they made a big deal about how you get pickles with your meal!) - but everything else was FANTASTIC. I had a potato pancake - great. Apple sauce or sour cream - I always eat it with apple sauce, and have thought that sour cream was gross every since I was little, but hey, at least they offered.
I also had an open face lox + cream cheese on a bagel that was ON THE MONEY. At first look I thought it wouldn't be so great - the lox looked a little thick, like it was sliced by an inexperienced hand, and I got worried - but I shouldn't have been. It was GREAT. The sandwich was perfect, and came with sliced tomato, red onion, and cukes - a really nice touch, I thought, of the have-it-your-way kind. I usually eat mine with a slice of tomato but I tried it with the cucumber, too.
All in all, I was really pleased. This place reminded me a lot of Ben's, for any of you New Yorkers out there (long island, born and bred...), and I'll probably be heading back there for dinner tonight - that's how much I liked it.
Anyway, I strongly recommend this place, if you're in the neighborhood... and even if you're not, it might be worth the trip if you're craving this kind of food. Three years in DC, and I haven't found anywhere that did things right like this - kosher places included.
(Note: this place is not kosher).
I actually had to ask where the guys who owned this were from, guessing that they're from back east. And, kind of, they are - the checkout girl said they are Israeli. They apparently own some other places, too (I forgot the names) - whatever the case may be, they certainly trained the kitchen staff at this place well.
PS - unrelated but I saw a really good t shirt the other day. It said:
I'm not a Jew
I'm just Jew-ish