This documentary focuses on Ziggy Gruber, who co-owns a large deli in Houston and is also the grandson of the original owner of the Rialto Deli, the first Kosher deli to open on Broadway in New York City in the 1920s. The deli is the main love in this man's life. While the film also covers other famous Jewish delis in Manhattan, Queens, Los Angeles and San Francisco and their histories, the emphasis is on the cultural aspects of the food and how the culture and the desire for this food is disappearing. There were once thousands of these delis and now there's fewer than 150 left in the entire U.S. Such luminaries as Larry King, Jerry Stiller, Fyvush Finkel, Freddie Roman and Alan Dershowitz as well as various deli owners express their love for the culture and the food.Written by
I love deli food and I loved this movie. The historical stuff was fascinating, while Ziggy, the main focus, is delightful and lovable. I really have nothing bad to say EXCEPT-- the deli they featured in San Francisco is the only one in the movie that doesn't stick to traditional deli food, but specializes in chi-chi California Cuisine- style variations on the theme. Okay great. But most restaurants in San Francisco, featuring ANY type of cuisine, do the same thing. It's not noteworthy for any restaurant in SF to feature smoked caramelized arugula drizzle. So the filmmakers should have shown a traditional Jewish deli in San Francisco-- - THAT would be special. And one does exist. I went there after the movie and had a heavenly whitefish salad sandwich.
Okay, rant over. Despite that one major flaw, it's still a great movie.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
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