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Shapiro's Deli Cafeteria

808 S. Meridian, Indianapolis, IN - (317) 631-4041
Posted By Michael Stern on June 10, 2011 5:32 AM
Opened by Louis and Rebecca Shapiro in 1905 as a small grocery store, Shapiro’s became a restaurant in the 1930s. Today it is a full-service kosher-style deli where you can buy smoked fish and cold cuts by the pound; and it is also a huge cafeteria serving three meals a day. In our experience, Indianapolis is not a big breakfast city, so Shapiro’s is especially well worth knowing about in the morning.

The menu ranges from biscuits and gravy (not typical of Jewish delis!) to bagels and lox. We love the corned beef hash and also the corned beef omelet, which is loaded with meat and served with good home fried potatoes. One morning we asked the server in the cafeteria line about an item listed on the menu board as a matzoh omelet. She shrugged and offered her opinion that she couldn’t imagine that some crumbled crackers could be any good in eggs. But we tried it anyway and found it to be a kind of mid-American gloss on matzoh brei, the traditional Jewish breakfast dish in which bite-size scraps of matzoh are sheathed in scrambled egg like a kind of jumbled French toast but with a distinctive unleavened munchyness.

Shapiro’s is best known, and rightly so, for its corned beef sandwich. The vivid red spiced meat is steamy hot, sliced thin and piled high between slices of excellent rye bread. With a couple of latkes (potato pancakes) on the side, you’ve got a great lunch. Other good sandwiches include melting-soft beef brisket, garlicky salami, and chopped liver. Among the hot dishes is matzoh ball soup masterfully made with extra-strength chicken broth guaranteed to cure anything that ails you.

There is a second location on Rangeline Road in Carmel.
5 star rating
Overall Rating
corned beef sandwich
rye bread
potato pancakes
Hot Pastrami Sandwich
Tapioca
Custard Pie
corned beef omelet
Matzoh Omelet
Matzoh Brei

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Posted By Ed Kobek on October 17, 2013 12:57 PM
Way too costly for a corned beef sandwich. Sure there is a history for this restaurant, but at almost $13. 00 a sandwich, I'd gladly put the money in my gas tank and drive to NY!
1 star rating
Overall Rating
corned beef sandwich

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Posted By Coast 1250 on December 28, 2012 3:01 PM
Any of their sandwiches are incredible in portion size, taste, and freshness. The Ruben is legendary and has remained the same for at least the past 15-20 years. My wife and I often met my parents there and, as I sat there with a corned beef, potato pancakes, marinated mushroom salad, and a Dr. Brown's cream soda, I would remark to my wife, "This is the closest to heaven I will ever get." She would agree. The carrot cake was perfection.
5 star rating
Overall Rating
corned beef sandwich
potato pancakes
rye bread
Reuben
Carrot Cake

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Posted By Rocky Enfield on December 19, 2011 10:31 AM
After mayor al said that it was the best sandwich within 500 miles it meant that I just had to go to Shapiro's for lunch. When we got there we knew we were in for a treat because the line was so long. So many things looked fabulous but I had already decided before I got there that I was in the mood for a Rueben. I was wishing that I could get a half of a Rueben and a half of a pastrami but I couldn't (they don't sell the Rueben in halves) and it wasn't until after I had my food that I found out I could have solved my quandery by ordering a pastrami Rueben. Nevertheless, when I got my Rueben I recevied an immense sandwich that was satisying in every way except one (the corned beef was a bit dry for my taste), otherwise it was near perfection. Thick and delicious with the right amount of kraut and dressing where everything worked together in perfect harmony to make a great Rueben.



I had a side of marinated mushrooms that were just OK (could have gotten the same in any supermarket) and an incredible slice of butterscotch praline pie. I was going to forgo the dessert but I just couldn't resist trying a slice of a pie that I had never heard of before. My curiosity was rewarded. This pie was spectacular! The sweetness of the filling was perfectly balanced by the tangy, slightly sour cream topping. Without the topping the pie would have been overly sweet but together it was great.
5 star rating
Overall Rating
Reuben
Butterscotch Praline Pie

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Posted By Pete Runnels on July 2, 2011 6:25 PM
I've been going to Shapiro's for 40 years. The Reuben, pastrami, and tongue sandwiches are my favorites, along with potato salad and a Dr. Brown's cream soda. Other good sides are a potato pancake with apple sauce and deviled eggs. Be sure to get spicy mustard and fresh rye bread.

The portions are HUGE. We once counted the slices of meat on my wife's sandwich -- 39!

The huge slices of cake are to kill for. They also have takeout and a pastry case. We usually take a couple rugalach home. I've stood in the takeout line with people who came from Chicago.
5 star rating
Overall Rating
Hot Pastrami Sandwich
Reuben
corned beef sandwich
rye bread
Stuffed Pepper
potato pancakes
German Chocolate Cake
Deviled Eggs

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