Warrior vs. Langer's: threat or menace

You called Langers, home to perhaps the best pastrami sandwich on earth, “Americana Trash.” You didn’t say “the non-pastrami food is underwhelming,” you said “Americana trash.” There is a whole Hot Takes thread for that sort of thing, but you brought it upon yourself a million percent.


Warrior: I am a sinner who is probably going to sin again. Lord forgive me.


Not sure if you are a native Angeleno or a transplanted one, but like every major city, we love and are protective of our institutions. We came close to losing Langer’s in the early 90s, and with the loss of (and rumors about losing) other longtime LA Jewish delis like Greenblatt’s and Nate and Al’s in a place where they seem fewer and far between nowadays, we’ll defend to the death what we have left (especially when it involves the world’s greatest pastrami). Try not to take it too personally - a lot of us will cut somebody for talking sh*t on Langer’s, but we also soften when you show love for our other establishments.


Get the #19 and sub turkey for pastrami. It’s a goddamn delightful sandwich.


Discretion is the better part of valor.

So you can review Langer’s without eating red meat, but it’s not particularly relevant, given the canon of Jewish deli. Why do it?

Not to mention, it’s hard to read the follow up as anything but provocative. With the information from this thread, you again chose to review Langer’s on some dishes everyone knows are bad, not the specialties of a Jewish deli! Which is not a mortal sin and not the biggest deal. I do get that you feel attacked, and rightly. Your opinions are being attacked. But if you express strong opinions on the internet, there’s gonna be criticism.

Have to be honest, I first noted this on the Gish Bac review, a restaurant I like and one that, imo, deserves the benefit of the doubt. Reviewing Gish Bac without eating their barbacoa seems parsimonious at best. I get your point about menu consistency with places like Providence, Bestia, Pasjoli, but if we’re talking regional specialists or even one dish focused restaurants (Sun Nong Dan), why review if you can’t/won’t eat those things? It might not seem like much, but a middling review of Gish Bac, Bludsos etc is read by a number of people and can have real consequences for small businesses in a struggling industry.

Again, on balance I really like what y’all bring to this board, the information and energy. I understand not eating red meat, and I get reviewing restaurants through that lens. Where you lose me is not acknowledging that frame, or assuming that frame gives a fair and representative view of certain restaurants.

If your dietary restrictions prevent you from eating the strongest dish or specialities, that’s okay. It’s the insistence that the review, bc of your weakest dish theory, is fair or representative or relevant, down to the numerical grade, that I take issue with.

ps. I do appreciate the kendrick reference but why are you tryna kill langer’s vibe.


No. It’s a very large category of dishes.

It’s an interesting question why restaurants that do some things really well offer a lot of other dishes that are mediocre or worse, so if you order the wrong things you can have a bad meal.

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It’s a well-known phenomenon which we used to term on Chowhound as “a minefield of a menu”…


Well-known, but still a bit of a mystery.

I guess Langer’s is kind of like the Chinese restaurants that do some great regional stuff but have broccoli beef etc. on the menu for the customers who think that’s what Chinese food is.


This all reminds me of someone on CH that complained about my recommendation of Shu Feng in San Gabriel for Sichuan, telling how terrible their order was. Turned out they’d ordered a scallion pancake. At a Sichuan place :man_facepalming:


Or ordering xiaolongbao at dim sum.


I really don’t understand the reaction to your “Americana trash” comment since it seems rather innocuous to me, albeit a bit harsh. After reading the angry responses to your Langer’s review, I was surprised by the number of “foodies” who insisted that negative opinions should not be given if the item ordered wasn’t a popular one. I am puzzled by this reaction. There are many vegans and vegetarians on this planet; we don’t all eat meat. Does this logic suggest that we are not allowed to criticize what we eat if it is from an establishment know for its meat dishes? A lot of nonsensical commentary without substance, IMO. I also don’t understand the negativity regarding your reviews of “takeout” food. I, for one, appreciate your insight and am well-aware that food delivered may not taste as good when it reaches my home. It’s nice to have your insight and pictures :). Many thanks for your honesty and your willingness to take the heat.


It’s kinda like calling the Simpsons “Americana Trash” because you watched half of season 19 and it sucked.

Also we love drama

I think plenty of posters reasonably explained why they took issue with how Langers was reviewed.


Welcome, excited to hear your take on things!

But this misunderstands the debate. The problem isn’t the criticism of specific dishes or even restaurants. It’s painting specific restaurants, one dish restaurants, regional specialists for example, with a broad brush without trying their specialties. Feel free to criticize why specific dishes at specific restaurants don’t work. That’s one of the many things I like about this board and is one of numerous positives PeonyWarrior brings.

But generalizations and sweeping pronouncements, without evidence ie trying specialties at specialists, aren’t particularly relevant or fair, as many on this thread have pointed out. Sure you can do it, but why? Giving an overall rating and sweeping criticism of a Jewish deli without eating the Jewish deli canon doesn’t make much sense.


Depends on the place. If you don’t eat beef, there’s no good reason to go to Langer’s. Might be an OK choice for a vegetarian who’s nearby and wants eggs and toast. Not vegan-friendly at all

Warrior: Honestly, Langer’s is such an objectively mediocre restaurant overall (we’re talking Sizzler quality in many aspects), I disregard the personal attacks. The fact that Langer’s has the “world’s best pastrami” doesn’t justify the fanatical devotion and shouldn’t immunize it from criticism.


When the last time you ate at a Sizzler’s???

And, BTW, I loved some stuff at Sizzler’s (incl the toast).


Langer’s has one of if not the best pastrami sandwich in the world, which is for most people the only reason to go there. It’s not nearly as good if you don’t eat it right away, so I don’t recommend getting it delivered.


I go to Langer’s for the rye bread. Their Pastrami is amazing but is often too rich for lunch for me, so I go turkey #19. And I actually go to Daughter’s Deli on Sunset far more often since it’s close and delivers. Same bread and still terrific pastrami, if that’s your jam.


So…fucking awesome? If Sizzler could distribute that cheese bread worldwide we’d finally have peace.