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Second Avenue Deli: Counting Down the Days

The Second Avenue Deli won't be on Second Avenue anymore, but at least it's really coming back.

The New York Times Magazine published an illuminating article yesterday on the rise and fall (and soon to rise again) of the venerable New York institution, along with a brief history of the Jewish deli in general. Did you know that in the 1960s there were 300 kosher delis in New York City and its suburbs? Now, you've got to do some research to find one. What about Carnegie, Katz's, and Stage, you ask? Nice try, but they're not kosher. All the more reason to be excited about Second Avenue's reopeningas the only big-name kosher deli in New York.

I'm keeping my eye on the construction site at 33rd Street between Lexington and Third Avenues, where the deli is scheduled to open early next month. A change of locale won't be the only transformation: the restaurant will be open 24/7 and will have a full bar; it will fit a mere 65 people compared to the 128 seats at the old location; and there's going to be a new "appetizing" section on the menu with pastrami lox, smoked tuna loin, herring and the like.

It's comforting to know, though, that most of the same cooks will return and, of course, the deli is staying in the family. Stay tuned for updates…

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