Call me crazy, but a Saturday morning in the middle of a snow storm sounds like the perfect time for a little corned beef hash to me. After what seemed like an extra-long week at work, and with a rare morning alone with Mrs. Grub Guy to be had, I was determined that we would have a nice breakfast out to just relax and watch the snow fall from someplace warm and cozy. Now, don’t get me wrong…I wouldn’t have been so insistent had we been going to just any old diner that morning. But this particular morning, I had planned to visit one of German Village’s most well-known restaurants, Katzinger’s Delicatessen. And that was worth braving the snowy winds and icy roads to me. As for the wife, well, she would have to be convinced…but she finally agreed to tag along for the sled ride down I-70. I promised her it would be worth it…
I wouldn’t necessarily call Katzinger’s Deli a breakfast restaurant, although they do have a small breakfast menu which is served all day. They are, however, the closest thing we have in Columbus to a New York style deli. Part specialty market, part deli counter, and part café, Katzinger’s has served their delicious sandwiches and other deli favorites since 1984, including to local and national politicians and celebrities who make it a point to visit this Columbus institution when in town. They’ve also been featured on the Food Network show, “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”, and are one of the stops on Columbus Food Adventures‘ local German Village culinary tour.
The vibe at Katzinger’s is a casual, yet energetic one. It’s the kind of place where, on a day like we visited when it was pretty empty (undoubtedly due to the weather outside), you can sit back and relax and enjoy the atmosphere. There are also times, however, when Katzinger’s is packed with local business people or families having a delicious lunch together. Their super friendly employees have crazy contagious energy, and it shows in the environment they present and the food they prepare.
Their specialty market and deli cases are impossible to compare to anything else in the city. Their shelves are stocked with pickles, oils, chocolates, dressings, wines & spirits, and just about anything yummy you can think of. Their coolers are filled with deliciously beautiful meats and cheeses. I’m starting to salivate….
Katzinger’s also sells wild-yeasted artisanal baked goods made locally by Dan the Baker, who specializes in European style breads. These loaves are situated right in the window, calling for passersby to come and partake.
Aged cheeses from all over the world are available to purchase and sample.
Pickles, kraut, sausages, wild mackerel, and more cheeses tempted me at every turn.
Take a look at these beauties. Giant wheels of Parmigiano Reggiano are a wonder to behold.
Ahem…sorry…back to breakfast. Here’s a shot of Katzinger’s order counter, and their case which houses everything from redskin potato salad to deserts like turtle brownies and New York style cheesecake. Their menu is quite expansive, and I was only able to capture about half of it in this picture. They have dozens of specialty deli sandwiches (and they all have fun, wacky names to boot), as well as salads, soups, sides, and of course, breakfast. As I said before, their breakfast choices are fairly limited, but encompass favorites like bagel’s made locally by Sammy’s Bagels, which you can order with smoked Nova salmon or cream cheese, blintzes (which are essentially crepes filled with warm cream cheese and topped with preserves), or their delicious corned beef!!
I’m going to start with a shot of our entire breakfast table. We bought several things to sample, and knew we’d be taking about half of it home for later. Let me break this down for you here….
First off, Katzinger’s offers free pickles. In barrels. That’s just cool. They come in dill and garlic, and you can take as many as you’ll eat. This alone is enough to make Katzinger’s one of my favorite spots in Columbus. My wife and I decided breakfast pickles are a must!!
We tried one of their delicious Sticky Buns ($3.25), which was without question one of the yummiest treats I’ve had in a while. Warm and gooey, the dough was incredibly soft and fresh, layered with cinnamon and coated in sweet caramel icing, which had slivers of almonds and pecans incorporated throughout.
We also ordered a side of the Fruit Salad ($4.95) to go with our meal. The small, side portion was large enough for the two of us to share, and we still brought some home. It was deliciously fresh and chilled, and was a perfect complement to our savory breakfast entrée…
We both ordered Eric’s Seriously Delicious Corned Beef Hash Breakfast ($10.25). Ok, I have a confession. I have never been a big fan of corned beef (Gasp!!). As it turns out, I have just been eating the WRONG corned beef!! Katzinger’s corned beef hash breakfast has got to be one of the best breakfast plates in the city. It comes with a mountain of hash, topped with two eggs (any style), and two large slices of seedless rye bread. My wife said she could have made a meal on the bread alone. It was incredibly fresh, dense, crusty around the edges, and didn’t have any sour aftertaste that you sometimes get with rye bread. It was mellow and nice, and they even offered to butter our toast for us. The eggs were your standard scrambled variety, and of course, the star of the plate was the hash.
The corned beef was moist, sweet and succulent with just the right touch of saltiness. It was tender and delicious and had a beautiful crust on the outside. It was made with soft, red skinned potatoes and caramelized onions, and honestly, the beef to filler ratio was about 70/30. It was melt-in-your-mouth goodness all the way. Five stars!!
I really cannot speak highly enough of our visit to Katzinger’s Delicatessen. The flavor and freshness of the food was outstanding, the service and employees were friendly and helpful, and the menu and market are hard to beat…anywhere. I’m pretty confident in saying that I think these guys could stand toe-to-toe with any New York City deli any day. For Columbus, the prices may be a little steep, but after your first bite you won’t care.
And, oh yeah…as we were leaving, my wife turned to me, smiled, and said, “Ok, you convinced me. It was worth it” :)
Katzinger’s Delicatessen is located at 475 S. 3rd St, Columbus, OH 43215 (Map). They are open Monday – Friday, 8:30 AM – 8:30 PM, and Saturday – Sunday, 9:00 AM – 8:30 PM. For more info, you can check out their website or Facebook page.