The Best Pastrami Sandwiches in New York

The best pastrami sandwiches in New York are as iconic as the Statue of Liberty or Empire State Building. But, whilst some pastrami sandwiches stack their meat as high as those famous monuments, the best one’s balance that deliciously fatty and smoky meat with all its other ingredients.


Which is why Katz Deli is NOT the best pastrami sandwich in New York City. **Ducks for cover**.


We’ll explain why below, but before then, here is a list of the best New York sandwiches with pastrami in them, not just another tired list of pastrami on rye sandwiches in New York City. Because to be honest, bad bread and mustard alone do not make for a great New York pastrami sandwich.


Frankel’s Delicatessen & Appetizing Store

Frankel’s quite simply makes the best pastrami reuben in New York City. A corner deli in Greenpoint, Brooklyn that opened in 2016, Frankel’s takes its inspo from legends of the game like Barney Greengrass and Zabar’s. And given the taste of the sandwiches they are slinging across the counter, Frankel’s look set to be in the NYC just as long as its predecessors.


That blackened pastrami crust that rubs against your teeth as you take that first bite would be more than enough to convince you to take the next. But then your tastebuds get the privilege of being beset by smoke, salt and fat all at the same time, at which point you’ll be into bite three before your brain even registers what’s happening. The additions of tangy sauerkraut, gooey swiss cheese and rich Russian dressing on toasted rye are the cherries on top of this pastrami cake.


Hometown BBQ

Photo courtesy of Hometown BBQ

Throwing it back to the traditional New York version – ‘strami, rye and mustard – but bringing a Southern spin to the cooking, Hometown BBQ hits it out of the park with their pastrami sandwich. Using only wood to cook their meats, its easy to forget you’re on the shores of Brooklyn and not in the low country of Texas when you enjoy this sandwich.


Thicker than your usual slices of pastrami lay in perfect symmetry across the golden-brown rye bread like edible terracotta warriors in this sandwich. The toasted bread adds some much-needed structure to the sandwich as without it you might forget you need teeth to eat this pastrami sandwich that otherwise melts in your mouth. A blast of heat from the confident amount of mustard on this sandwich rounds it out perfectly.


David’s Brisket House

Tucked away in a non-descript shop in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, David’s Brisket House serves up some of the best brisket in the five boroughs. And luckily nothing goes as good with one meat, as another meat, particularly pastrami. Which is why at David’s Brisket House you can get both on the same sandwich.


To the untrained eye, brisket and pastrami are like the Hemsworth Brothers – indistinguishable hunks of delicious meat. But to those who pay close attention to what’s entering their mouths, it’s easy to pick out Thor over Katnis’ boyfriend. In New York, we only deal with heroes, which is why we are a pastrami city. However, if you can stomach both meats, then David’s phenomenal pastrami and brisket, with a side of dripping jus, is a combo that not even Thanos can stand in the way of.


Edith’s Sandwich Counter

Who said pastrami had to be limited to rye as a deliver mechanism? The team at Edith’s certainly don’t think so, which is why they are spinning classic Jewish dishes into modern sandwich masterpieces and taking over East Williamsburg in the process.


What originally started as a pop-up bagel shop inside Paulie Gee’s pizzeria, Edith’s is now serving pastrami classics – the reuben, hot pastrami on rye – alongside some inventive (and at times controversial) sandwiches like their pastrami cheesesteak. We can only assume they defiled two cities iconic sandwiches just to undermine the idea of brotherly love, but along the way they made one of the best pastrami sandwiches in New York. Who knew house-smoked brisket pastrami, sauteed onions and ‘cheese sauce’ on a grilled hoagie could taste so good? I guess Edith did.


S&P Lunch (formerly Eisenberg’s)

When you’ve been making pastrami sandwiches for over 90 years, you get pretty good at it. Sadly 92 years of slinging sandwiches couldn’t save Eisenberg’s from closing during the pandemic. Fortunately, the folks behind Court Street Grocers gave it a new life this year by re-opening this legendary spot under the new name S&P Lunch.


With the menu remaining relatively the same as its predecessor, its easy to jump straight into the classic pastrami on rye here. However, do NOT sleep on the S&P Regular. That same delicious smokey and fatty pastrami is given a new lease on life in this sandwich, much like its surrounding deli has, with spicy cherry peppers and comeback sauce on a club roll. Eat it and instantly understand why they call in comeback sauce. You’ll be returning soon.


Harry & Ida’s

The bad news is that Harry & Ida’s has been shut for over two years now. Sorry. So, their inclusion in this list is simply an attempt to convince Will and Julie to reopen their incredible deli and offer us their outstanding sandwich – The Pop’s.


Combining thick cut pastrami, buttermilk fermented cucumbers, fresh dill, anchovy infused mustard and a crusty hero, this sandwich was so delicious that it was known to convince people to quit their careers in the law for a career in the sandwich. True Story. Bring it back!



Photo courtesy of Redfarm

Is an eggroll a sandwich? Carbs around meat and vegetables delivered in a hand-held form – Yes. Are the Redfarm pastrami eggrolls friggin delicious – Absolutely. So, before you complain, just go to Redfarm and eat this delicious pastrami with a hint of heat, encased within crispy, doughy wrappers, served alongside a pool of sweet mustard. Then thank us later.


Bonus tip – Katz Deli

OK, so we need to discuss this. Katz is an institution. An experience. An icon. Katz may make the best pastrami in New York City (cue arguments about 2nd Ave Deli, Pastrami Queen, Ben’s Deli etc). I mean, Katz does spend 10 laborious days doing so, so it’s not a stretch to suggest theirs is the best.


But their pastrami sandwich is seriously let down by the choice of untoasted rye bread that falls apart on the very first bite of the sandwich, crumbling dry residue over the moist, fleshy, delicious meat that remains on your plate after the sandwich implodes. So go and enjoy a delicious pile of meat masquerading as a sandwich. But if you want a taste of everything in your hands in each bite from beginning to end, see the list above for when you’re in the mood for a pastrami sandwich in New York.

2 hours
Group Size
At least 1

Brooklyn Sandwich Tour

New York sandwiches are not confined to just New York City. Brooklyn also offers an amazing range of sandwiches to enjoy too!

In this experience, we will answer the question "what is a sandwich?" as we eat three different interpretations of the sandwich in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Together we'll visit destinations that you will not find in a typical tourist guidebook as we eat our way through the history and evolution of the sandwich.

Along the way, we'll hear stories about the venues we are eating at and the people who are making our food. We'll discover street art and we'll also learn how the people of Williamsburg have influenced the sandwich game in New York.

**Vegetarian options available, but not vegan or gluten-free (sorry!)**

2 hours
Group Size
At least 1

America Josh x New York Sandwich Tour

G'day America Josh-ers (yeah we made that up). We have one question for you all - is a hotdog a sandwich?

If you want the answer, then join your fellow Aussies, sandwich lovers and NYC fans on this fun, delicious, and thought-provoking food tour as we feast on amazing sandwiches in the East Village.

Together we will visit foodie destinations that only NYC locals know about as we debate the question "what is a sandwich?", and answer it by eating different types of delicious sandwiches.

In addition to the sandwiches, you will also hear stories about the history of the sandwich, the people who make them and learn about the history of New York too. Plus we'll finish up at a great bar so we can continue the discussion after the tour is done.

So come with an open mind and leave with a FULL stomach (and an answer to whether or not a hotdog, a burger or a taco is a sandwich).

*Vegetarian options available, but not vegan or gluten-free (sorry!)

*Don't forget to use the America Josh promo code for a 10% discount on these 2 special tours.

2 hours
Group Size
At least 1

New York Sandwich Tour

Join your fellow sandwich lovers on this fun, delicious, and thought-provoking food tour as we feast on amazing sandwiches in New York City.

Together we will visit foodie destinations that only NYC locals know about as we debate the question "what is a sandwich?", and answer it by eating different types of delicious sandwiches.

In addition to the delicious sandwiches, you will also hear stories about the history of the sandwich, and the people who make them. We'll also discover street art and learn about the history of New York too.

Come with an open mind, and leave with a FULL stomach (and an answer to whether or not a hotdog, a burger or a taco is a sandwich).

*Vegetarian options available, but not vegan or gluten-free (sorry!)

**Private tours are available for corporate teams. As experienced by Amazon, Google, Audible and more. 

***Don't see a day/time that suits you? Ask us for a new time and we can try to accommodate.

2 hours
Group Size
At least 1

The Beers, Burgers and Buns Experience

Can’t decide between a bar crawl and a food tour whilst you’re in New York? Then why not join an experience that does both!

On the Beers, Burgers, and Buns experience we will do just what the title suggests - drink cold beer (or wine), eat delicious burgers, and bite into some (chicken) buns – as we walk through the fascinating neighborhood of the East Village.

Along the way, we’ll visit three unique bars and two dining spots, plus we’ll learn about the fascinating history of New York City – from the prohibition era to today – and hear the stories of the people behind the food and drink you will be enjoying. What more could you ask for?

This experience is only for those 21 years & older. EVERYONE must bring a valid ID.

Great for solo travelers, corporate groups, and private parties alike.

*Sadly this is not available for vegan and gluten-free diets. Sorry!

1 hour
Group Size
At least 10

A Sandwich Masterclass - Virtual Cooking Class

Welcome to the only cooking class  that answers the question “Is a hotdog a sandwich?”!

In this virtual cooking class - perfect for team-building events and corporate groups - we will create a delicious New York-style sandwich together across a fun & interactive one-hour Zoom call.

During the Masterclass, we will learn tips and tricks to make your sandwiches taste as amazing as the 'inspo' on @a_man_and_his_sandwich (IG).

We'll chat about our favorite sandwiches, learn about the history of ingredients between bread, and debate whether a hotdog, burger or taco can be considered a sandwich – prepare yourself for the lively debate!