1) Barney Greengrass: 541 Amsterdam @ 86-7th; Takes the top spot as this amazing deli in addition to the normal deli fare, features the best Lox and smoked fish in the city. Amazing breakfasts here – especially Nova on a bagel! Awesome chicken, egg and tuna salad as well.
2) Second Avenue Deli: 162 E 33rd @ 3rd- Lex; Number 1 rated in Zagats before it closed due to a rent increase in 2006. Re-opened in November 2007 with same ownership. This was my favorite deli pre-closure and it has the best pastrami sandwiches on earth. 2nd location: 1442 1st Av @ 75th.
3) Katz’s Deli: 205 E Houston @ Ludlow; Corned beef and Pastrami are the specialties. Famous pickles. When Harry Met Sally filmed here. Like a large school cafeteria inside but so so good and worth the trip to the Lower East Side as it is a Manhattan institution.
4) Stage Deli: 834 7th Av @ 53-4th; Unbelievably large sandwiches made the way you’d have it if you were having your last meal on death row. Crowded and loud, yet a fantastic deli experience. Large menu as well with most usual diner fair.
5) Sable’s Smoked Fish: Smoked Fish. 1489 2nd @ 77th; 28/21/25/E; Amazing Lox; Bagels; Coffee; Salmon; Lobster Salad; Salmon, sturgeon; Caviar; Bagel & Lox sandwiches to die for; Friendliest service. They also have an impossibly good array of salads including crab & lobster.
6) Pastrami Queen: 1125 Lexington Ave @ 78-9th; Great, great sandwiches that are larger than life. Extremely tight quarters and little ambiance. Better for take-out in my opinion but oh what great Pastrami and overstuffed sandwiches.
7) Sarge’s Deli: 548 3rd Av @ 36-7th; Humongous sandwiches packed with pastrami, turkey or corned beef alond with the other usual options. Pickles are highly rated. Been an institution in Manhattan for decades. Open 24/7 so a great late night option.
8) Artie’s Deli: 2290 Broadway @ 82-3rd; Replanted from the Upper West Side, this Jewish mainstay and home of huge sandwiches and tasty pickles is a solid option for any carnivore. Noted for matzo ball soup.
9) Ben’s Deli: 209 W 38th @ 7-8th; Heapingly large sandwiches. They offer a large menu of endless options to suit any picky deli-goer. You’ll need a vice to get your mouth open wide enough for the food.
10) Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop: 174 5th Av @ 22nd-23rd; Breakfast served all day; Diner setting; Been around a long time; Hot pastrami sandwich is amazing; Prices are great; Very old school.