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Ernie in a red hat weighing a really tall sandwich and wrapping it in wax paper.
Ernie’s Market in Oak Park.
Michelle and Chris Gerard

13 Delightful Metro Detroit Delis to Visit

From classic Italian sub shops to Jewish appetizing institutions serving hot pastrami on rye

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Ernie’s Market in Oak Park.
| Michelle and Chris Gerard

Not to be upstaged by its numerous diners, Detroit has an abundance of excellent delis ranging from Italian markets serving sub sandwiches to full-service Jewish delicatessens serving matzo ball soup and hot pastrami on rye. To the west in Ann Arbor, one of the nation’s best-known delicatessens, Zingerman’s, continues to draw tourists and townies.

Detroit’s classic delicatessens has even sparked innovation, such as in the case of Asian Corned Beef — a deli that serves corned beef inside fried egg roll wrappers. Within the past several years, the area has seen a small resurgence in modern Italian delicatessens, too. Restaurants such as Rocco’s Italian Deli sell made-to-order sandwiches as well as meat, cheese, and salads by the pound. In this guide, find a selection of the best of all camps from deli institutions specializing in Reuben sandwiches to neighborhood lunch destinations with deli meats stacked on fresh onion rolls.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Gonella’s

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295 Oakwood
Detroit, MI 48217
(313) 841-3500
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Three-quarters of a century old Italian sub shop Gonella’s is situated in the Oakwood Heights area of Southwest Detroit. It maintains a loyal following for its deli sandwiches stacked with layer upon layer of meats and cheeses. Everything is topped with shredded lettuce and tomato. Customers can also pickup sides of marinated olives, mushrooms, pasta salad, and even cannoli.

2. Alcamo's Market

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4423 Schaefer Rd
Dearborn, MI 48126
(313) 584-3010
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Beloved neighborhood market Alcamo’s has been in business for decades, specializing in imported Italian products such as olive oils, wine, fresh sausage made on site, and, of course, pasta. But what really packs in the fans are the Italian subs including the Veggie Deluxe with provolone, cucumber, bell pepper, lettuce, tomato, onions, and the store’s special sauce.

3. Hygrade Deli

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3640 Michigan Ave
Detroit, MI 48216
(313) 894-6620
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This venerable, full-service Michigan Avenue delicatessen is known for its corned beef and pastrami sandwiches. The shop makes a mean Reuben piled high with thinly sliced corned beef, swiss, sauerkraut, and Thousand Island dressing on toasted rye bread with a pickle on the side. Dr. Brown’s sodas are always on hand.

A reuben sandwich from hygrade deli sliced in half with about an inch and a half of corned beef between two slices of toasted bread Brenna Houck

4. Mudgie's Deli and Wine Shop

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1300 Porter St
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 961-2000
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Corktown hotspot Mudgie’s Deli serves a long list of quality sandwiches as well as an extensive selection of beer and wine. Classic sandwiches like muffaletta are well represented on the menu, but Mudgie’s signature items are where the restaurant really shines. Choose from meaty options like the Gutty with salami, pastrami, corned beef, bacon, and smoked brisket. For vegetarians, the Tempeh of Doom with marinated tempeh, avocado, roasted red pepper, local sprouts, provolone cheese, greens, and honey mustard dressing is always a good bet.

5. La Pecora Nera

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1514 Washington Blvd
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 315-3040
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A scrappy little Italian deli off Washington Boulevard in downtown Detroit, La Pecora Nera is geared towards lunch crowds with made-to-order sub sandwiches, salads, espresso, and gelato. Grab a PLT with pancetta, lettuce, tomato and dine-in at one of the communal tables or pick up an antipasto salad to-go.

a sandwich sliced in half with several types of meat, lettuce, and tomato La Pecora Nera [Official photo]

6. Nathan's Deli

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581 E Jefferson Ave
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 962-3354
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This Bricktown area deli located just off Jefferson Avenue is a good bet during the downtown lunch hour for dine-in or carryout. The restaurant has an casual diner feel with a walk-up counter and checkered floors, plus all of the deli menu standard bearers from chicken salad to roast beef. The sandwiches are typically served on white, wheat, or rye but for a little extra customers can add an onion or kaiser roll.

7. Bread Basket Deli Downtown Detroit

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3242 E Jefferson Ave
Detroit, MI 48207
(313) 262-6393
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Metro Detroit deli chain Bread Basket specializes in big sandwiches stuffed with up to a pound of deli meat. Patrons can also find items here like corned beef egg rolls, Reuben french fries, and Dr. Brown’s sodas. While most locations are geared towards carryout, some Bread Baskets offer dine-in seating, too.

8. Russell Street Deli

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2465 Russell St
Detroit, MI 48207
(313) 567-2900
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Eastern Market institution Russell Street Deli caters to breakfast and lunch crowds with an assemblage of outstanding sandwiches and is equally beloved for its scratch-made soups. Fans swear by the Sy Ginsberg, which finds pastrami, swiss cheese, caramelized onions, and mustard stacked between two slices of rye. Get there before Russell Street bids farewell to the neighborhood. The restaurant is closing in September.

9. Rocco's Italian Deli

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3627 Cass Ave
Detroit, MI 48201
(313) 315-3033
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Cass Corridor restaurant Rocco’s pays tribute to the old-school Italian delis in a modern space. Here, customers can find a meal, grab a glass of wine, or take something home from the glass case stuffed with meats, cheeses, and olives. Choose from sandwich options such as the Zio Freddo’s Got Serious Beef with giardiniera-braised beef and provolone or the Better Than Fried Bologna, filled with fried mortadella, pickles, sauteed onions, and plenty of brown mustard.

10. Delite Café & Deli

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3135 Caniff St
Hamtramck, MI 48212
(313) 305-4244
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This Hamtramck deli trades in salads, wraps, pressed sandwiches prepared filled with Boar’s Head meats. Try the supreme on a hoagie roll with roast beef, turkey, swiss, or the Blazing Buffalo chicken with chipotle dressing, jalapenos, and chipotle gouda for something spicy.

11. Asian Corned Beef

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13660 Wyoming Ave
Detroit, MI 48238
(313) 834-1819
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Founded by Kim White in the 1970s, this unassuming Detroit carryout deli chain has gone on to inspire numerous imitations of its signature dish: the corned beef egg roll. The fried wonton envelopes come filled with anything from corned beef and melty swiss cheese to steak. They’re are big, hot, and downright affordable for under $5. Customers at Asian Corned Beef can also find corned beef sandwiches and deviled eggs on the menu.

12. Ernie's Market

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8500 Capital St
Oak Park, MI 48237
(248) 541-9703
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Ernie’s Market is a beloved Oak Park landmark that’s been faithfully drawing lunch crowds for years with its huge, affordable sandwiches served on fresh-baked onion rolls. Don’t be surprised if proprietor Ernie himself slips you a few chilled Hershey’s Kisses from the deli case while he assembles your order. This spot recently upgraded with a new outdoor patio, though it’s still cash-only.

Ernie holding up two halves of a sandwich.

13. Stage Deli Restaurant

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6873 Orchard Lake Rd
West Bloomfield Township, MI 48322
(248) 855-6622
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West Bloomfield’s full-service Jewish delicatessen Stage Deli has all the proper fare for appetizing including bagels with lox and cream cheese, smoked whitefish spread, and pickle plates. There’s also staples like matzo ball soup, hot pastrami sandwiches, and babka for dessert.

a pastrami sandwich on untoasted rye bread with a pickle Stage Deli [Official photo]

1. Gonella’s

295 Oakwood, Detroit, MI 48217

Three-quarters of a century old Italian sub shop Gonella’s is situated in the Oakwood Heights area of Southwest Detroit. It maintains a loyal following for its deli sandwiches stacked with layer upon layer of meats and cheeses. Everything is topped with shredded lettuce and tomato. Customers can also pickup sides of marinated olives, mushrooms, pasta salad, and even cannoli.

295 Oakwood
Detroit, MI 48217

2. Alcamo's Market

4423 Schaefer Rd, Dearborn, MI 48126

Beloved neighborhood market Alcamo’s has been in business for decades, specializing in imported Italian products such as olive oils, wine, fresh sausage made on site, and, of course, pasta. But what really packs in the fans are the Italian subs including the Veggie Deluxe with provolone, cucumber, bell pepper, lettuce, tomato, onions, and the store’s special sauce.

4423 Schaefer Rd
Dearborn, MI 48126

3. Hygrade Deli

3640 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48216
A reuben sandwich from hygrade deli sliced in half with about an inch and a half of corned beef between two slices of toasted bread Brenna Houck

This venerable, full-service Michigan Avenue delicatessen is known for its corned beef and pastrami sandwiches. The shop makes a mean Reuben piled high with thinly sliced corned beef, swiss, sauerkraut, and Thousand Island dressing on toasted rye bread with a pickle on the side. Dr. Brown’s sodas are always on hand.

3640 Michigan Ave
Detroit, MI 48216

4. Mudgie's Deli and Wine Shop

1300 Porter St, Detroit, MI 48226

Corktown hotspot Mudgie’s Deli serves a long list of quality sandwiches as well as an extensive selection of beer and wine. Classic sandwiches like muffaletta are well represented on the menu, but Mudgie’s signature items are where the restaurant really shines. Choose from meaty options like the Gutty with salami, pastrami, corned beef, bacon, and smoked brisket. For vegetarians, the Tempeh of Doom with marinated tempeh, avocado, roasted red pepper, local sprouts, provolone cheese, greens, and honey mustard dressing is always a good bet.

1300 Porter St
Detroit, MI 48226

5. La Pecora Nera

1514 Washington Blvd, Detroit, MI 48226
a sandwich sliced in half with several types of meat, lettuce, and tomato La Pecora Nera [Official photo]

A scrappy little Italian deli off Washington Boulevard in downtown Detroit, La Pecora Nera is geared towards lunch crowds with made-to-order sub sandwiches, salads, espresso, and gelato. Grab a PLT with pancetta, lettuce, tomato and dine-in at one of the communal tables or pick up an antipasto salad to-go.

1514 Washington Blvd
Detroit, MI 48226

6. Nathan's Deli

581 E Jefferson Ave, Detroit, MI 48226

This Bricktown area deli located just off Jefferson Avenue is a good bet during the downtown lunch hour for dine-in or carryout. The restaurant has an casual diner feel with a walk-up counter and checkered floors, plus all of the deli menu standard bearers from chicken salad to roast beef. The sandwiches are typically served on white, wheat, or rye but for a little extra customers can add an onion or kaiser roll.

581 E Jefferson Ave
Detroit, MI 48226

7. Bread Basket Deli Downtown Detroit

3242 E Jefferson Ave, Detroit, MI 48207

Metro Detroit deli chain Bread Basket specializes in big sandwiches stuffed with up to a pound of deli meat. Patrons can also find items here like corned beef egg rolls, Reuben french fries, and Dr. Brown’s sodas. While most locations are geared towards carryout, some Bread Baskets offer dine-in seating, too.

3242 E Jefferson Ave
Detroit, MI 48207

8. Russell Street Deli

2465 Russell St, Detroit, MI 48207

Eastern Market institution Russell Street Deli caters to breakfast and lunch crowds with an assemblage of outstanding sandwiches and is equally beloved for its scratch-made soups. Fans swear by the Sy Ginsberg, which finds pastrami, swiss cheese, caramelized onions, and mustard stacked between two slices of rye. Get there before Russell Street bids farewell to the neighborhood. The restaurant is closing in September.

2465 Russell St
Detroit, MI 48207

9. Rocco's Italian Deli

3627 Cass Ave, Detroit, MI 48201

Cass Corridor restaurant Rocco’s pays tribute to the old-school Italian delis in a modern space. Here, customers can find a meal, grab a glass of wine, or take something home from the glass case stuffed with meats, cheeses, and olives. Choose from sandwich options such as the Zio Freddo’s Got Serious Beef with giardiniera-braised beef and provolone or the Better Than Fried Bologna, filled with fried mortadella, pickles, sauteed onions, and plenty of brown mustard.

3627 Cass Ave
Detroit, MI 48201

10. Delite Café & Deli

3135 Caniff St, Hamtramck, MI 48212

This Hamtramck deli trades in salads, wraps, pressed sandwiches prepared filled with Boar’s Head meats. Try the supreme on a hoagie roll with roast beef, turkey, swiss, or the Blazing Buffalo chicken with chipotle dressing, jalapenos, and chipotle gouda for something spicy.

3135 Caniff St
Hamtramck, MI 48212

11. Asian Corned Beef

13660 Wyoming Ave, Detroit, MI 48238

Founded by Kim White in the 1970s, this unassuming Detroit carryout deli chain has gone on to inspire numerous imitations of its signature dish: the corned beef egg roll. The fried wonton envelopes come filled with anything from corned beef and melty swiss cheese to steak. They’re are big, hot, and downright affordable for under $5. Customers at Asian Corned Beef can also find corned beef sandwiches and deviled eggs on the menu.

13660 Wyoming Ave
Detroit, MI 48238

12. Ernie's Market

8500 Capital St, Oak Park, MI 48237
Ernie holding up two halves of a sandwich.

Ernie’s Market is a beloved Oak Park landmark that’s been faithfully drawing lunch crowds for years with its huge, affordable sandwiches served on fresh-baked onion rolls. Don’t be surprised if proprietor Ernie himself slips you a few chilled Hershey’s Kisses from the deli case while he assembles your order. This spot recently upgraded with a new outdoor patio, though it’s still cash-only.

8500 Capital St
Oak Park, MI 48237

13. Stage Deli Restaurant

6873 Orchard Lake Rd, West Bloomfield Township, MI 48322
a pastrami sandwich on untoasted rye bread with a pickle Stage Deli [Official photo]

West Bloomfield’s full-service Jewish delicatessen Stage Deli has all the proper fare for appetizing including bagels with lox and cream cheese, smoked whitefish spread, and pickle plates. There’s also staples like matzo ball soup, hot pastrami sandwiches, and babka for dessert.

6873 Orchard Lake Rd
West Bloomfield Township, MI 48322

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