Your Guide to Authentic Regional Eats
Sign In | Register for Free!
Restaurants Recipes Forums Eating Tours Merchandise FAQ Maps Insider

Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop

174 5th Ave., New York, NY - (212) 675-5096
Posted By Michael Stern on 2/20/2009 6:33:00 PM
We used to adore Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop, and frequently directed people to it for the best tuna salad and egg salad sandwiches in town. In our opinion, this hole in the wall on Fifth Avenue between 22nd and 23rd Streets was an only-in-New York experience.

It still is the quintessential New York sandwich shop, but it is our belief that the food is not what it used to be. On a recent visit, the tuna and egg salad sandwiches, once the perfect fork-blended melange with plenty of mayo -- but not too much -- seemed more pulverized than mixed. The meat loaf on a hot meat loaf plate was pretty darn good, but the mashed potatoes that came alongside were watery. An egg cream was fine, but the lemonade was an insipid mix.

Maybe it was a bad day. Maybe we should have ordered chopped liver or hot pastrami or a Reuben sandwich. We WILL be back, that's for sure. Because even if the food has slipped, the place is a delight. It seems unchanged for decades, a ridiculously skinny space with tiny two-top tables along one wall and stools positioned so close to the counter that anyone over 5'2" tall will be playing kneesies with the knee guard.

Service is swift and sassy, by countermen who are experts at selling the famous sandwiches and who seemed genuinely upset when we didn't finish all our mashed potatoes.

21 out of 22 people found the review helpful. Was it helpful to you?

No Yes

Scorecard

3 - Overall: Excellent - Worth a Detour
Overall: Excellent - Worth a Detour
Rate this place

Reviewers Photos [Upload Your Photos]

A plate of salami and eggs is finished with home fries and rye toast, making this one justly greasy and comforting breakfast on a Saturday morning.
"A plate of salami and eggs is finished with home fries and rye toast, making this one justly greasy and comforting breakfast on a Saturday morning."
Bill Homan





Hot meat loaf with mashed potatoes and gravy is the lunch special every Tuesday and Thursday. The loaf, which the menu boasts is made from Eisenberg's original recipe, tastes good. The potatoes, in the background, couldn't be flatter.
"Hot meat loaf with mashed potatoes and gravy is the lunch special every Tuesday and Thursday. The loaf, which the menu boasts is made from Eisenberg's original recipe, tastes good. The potatoes, in the background, couldn't be flatter."
Michael Stern


A nice stack of juicy, garlicky fried salami on a crusty roll.  Cheese too.  Excellent stuff.
"A nice stack of juicy, garlicky fried salami on a crusty roll. Cheese too. Excellent stuff."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


Eisenberg has long been known for its tuna salad sandwich. This one was well-built on good rye and generously apportioned, but the tuna salad itself did not sparkle.
"Eisenberg has long been known for its tuna salad sandwich. This one was well-built on good rye and generously apportioned, but the tuna salad itself did not sparkle."
Michael Stern


We ordered potato salad with our sandwiches.  When it hadn't arrived, we reminded our waiter, who quickly scooped a mugful for us.  No charge.  Regular commercial potato salad, but there was something about this service style that we enjoyed...
"We ordered potato salad with our sandwiches. When it hadn't arrived, we reminded our waiter, who quickly scooped a mugful for us. No charge. Regular commercial potato salad, but there was something about this service style that we enjoyed..."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


I think I'll have to make another trip for the meatloaf special.
"I think I'll have to make another trip for the meatloaf special."
Bill Homan


Our very friendly waiter saw us taking pictures of our food and insisted he pose for a shot.
"Our very friendly waiter saw us taking pictures of our food and insisted he pose for a shot."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


The counter is a great place to chow down on some tasty food and engage in interesting conversation with Kenny (in the red hat, weekends only).
"The counter is a great place to chow down on some tasty food and engage in interesting conversation with Kenny (in the red hat, weekends only)."
Bill Homan


Eisenberg's lunch barely has room to walk between the tables along the wall and the long counter with stools. This photo was taken about 10:30am. By noon, every seat was occupied.
"Eisenberg's lunch barely has room to walk between the tables along the wall and the long counter with stools. This photo was taken about 10:30am. By noon, every seat was occupied."
Michael Stern


At least they're honest.
"At least they're honest."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


Eisenberg's is a classic old NYC sandwich shop.
"Eisenberg's is a classic old NYC sandwich shop."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


A destination sandwich shop for three-quarters of a century
"A destination sandwich shop for three-quarters of a century"
Michael Stern


Exactly!
"Exactly!"
Bill Homan


True, but it's good.
"True, but it's good."
Bill Homan


While the rye bread was ordinary, the tuna & egg salad combo was everything I could have hoped for.  Both flavors really stood out and it was very moist without being drippy.
"While the rye bread was ordinary, the tuna & egg salad combo was everything I could have hoped for. Both flavors really stood out and it was very moist without being drippy."
Bill Homan


A refreshing cherry-lime rickey.
"A refreshing cherry-lime rickey."
Bill Homan



What is Roadfood?  |   Submit Content  |   Privacy Policy  |   Contact Roadfood.com   Copyright - Roadfood.com