Local Eat of the Week: Protzel’s Corned Beef & Pastrami Reuben

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Alec Baris, Special to the Jewish Light

St. Louis is home to some fantastic spots that offer amazing entertainment and dining experiences. As an STL native whose two loves are Cardinal baseball and food, I’m experiencing a new one each week and sharing my thoughts. If you have suggestions for dishes I shouldn’t miss, please feel free to email me at [email protected].


Located at the corner of Clayton Road and Hanley Avenue, Protzel’s Deli, which opened in October 1954, has become a local landmark of sorts for the St. Louis Jewish community.

It’s been a while since the Jewish Light went into detail about the deli, and what a great first-time experience it can be, so I thought I would revisit the establishment to find out what makes Protzel’s so special.

I think I found that in the deli’s Reuben sandwich.

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It features a stack of Protzel’s famous lean corned beef and tasty pastrami, with tangy sauerkraut and creamy Russian dressing, sandwiched between marble rye bread, then grilled.  To keep it “kosher-style,” I ordered mine without Swiss cheese, but I highly recommend adding some if you’re so inclined.

The sandwich, served with a classic dill pickle, costs a reasonable $11 (Given its level of deliciousness, I’d have paid more, but I’m not complaining). To top it all off, splurge for a black and white frosted cookie for dessert. To paraphrase Jerry Seinfeld, you can never go wrong with the black and white.

Once again, revisiting a classic St. Louis establishment such as Protzel’s has revitalized my love for St. Louis cuisine, and sandwiches in particular. Tune in next week, as I’ll review my current favorite sandwich in town (Hint: it’s located on the Hill and starts with a G).