Canadian Jewish Deli Setting Up Shop In Berkeley, California

When people think barbecue, they probably imagine chowing down on one of the four main styles of BBQ: Memphis, Kansas City, Texas, and even California. When people think Bay Area, Berkeley, and Jewish cuisine in Montreal, Canada, BBQ is probably the furthest thing from their minds.

According to BerkeleySide, Augie’s Montreal Deli, a Jewish culinary icon, is coming to Berkeley.

Lex Gopnik-Lewinski, owner of Augie’s Montreal Deli said it best: “It’s as if pastrami and corned beef got together, had a couple glasses of wine, turned on some Barry White, and made a baby.”

That’s how Gopnik-Lewinski, who used to sneak pounds of it back to Berkeley after family visits to Montreal, described this particular smoked meat.

Now, a few blocks away from Berkeley Bowl West, a new Augie’s Montreal Deli is opening.

Though the Bay Area is known for it’s trendy eateries and strong acceptance of veganism, Gopnik-Lewinski stresses that this deli will stick to the delicious basics: meat and bread.

“Someone tried to tell me I have to have Swiss cheese,” Gopnik-Lewinski added. “If you’re a good enough customer, maybe I’ll keep some in the back for you, but we will have no avocado, no bacon, no lettuce, and no tomato. The one concession I’ll make is to give customers their choice of mustard. In Montreal, it’s traditionally yellow mustard only, but here we’ll offer deli mustard, too, but I’m not telling the Montrealers that. We are in America after all, the land of the free, and they give more choices here.”

Augie’s Montreal Deli is located at 875 Potter St. in Berkeley, a block away from Ashby Avenue and Seventh Street intersection. The Deli will be open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every day, but will remain open on Monday and Tuesday nights until 10:30 p.m. Sandwiches range from $14 to $19, along with an $8 classic poutine dish option.

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