Having never been to Manny’s before, I didn’t really know what to expect. Walking is a bit confusing as its like you’ve traveled back in time to a 60’s cafeteria complete with lunch trays, meatloaf, and deserts in little dishes on top of the counter. Once I navigated to the deli slicer, a mustachioed man was working the slicer and telling jokes – mostly about the sins of getting married, and his multiple girlfriends. The corned beef comes sliced thin and piled HIGH between two pieces of rye bread. A potato pancake and 2 pickle spears come on the side to round out a very filling meal. I added the horseradish mustard to mine (one of several condiments to dress your sandwich at your table) and it was pure nirvana. Bread, meat, and mustard – sandwiches don’t get more basic than that – but WOW was it good. Every ounce of shaved beef is mouthwatering. Only after I had finished off this behemoth did i look up and notice some of the newspaper articles that were framed on the walls. The one at my table had a picture from the Chicago Sun-Times of a man working the deli-slicer in 1992 – who looked oddly familiar. Could it be? OH, it WAS – the same guy who loaded my sandwich was the same in the picture, over 20 years ago! That’s why this place is an institution. The same people who have perfected their craft for over 50 years, still at it, and kicking cured beef ass.
The Fish Sandwich at New England Fish Co was among the best I’ve had of that variety, and I’ll be back to have it again – but it just ran into a buzzsaw. I see Manny’s going deep in this bracket.
Verdict: Manny’s Corned Beef