Dan Stein’s Deli does not serve po boys. So why is 500 po boys on queue at the Magazine Street sandwich shop?
Because Stein’s Deli does serve po boys. They just don’t call them that.
What constitutes a po boy? Traditionalist may aver that only torpedo-shaped sandwiches stuffed with liver cheese, french fries, roast beef, fried shrimp or some other traditional New Orleans-filling may qualify a sandwich as a po boy.
Non-traditionalists see things in a different light.
We love what Chef Cam Boudreaux is doing in a tiny kitchen in the back of the Erin Rose bar on Conti Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans. There you may find Moroccan lamb, roasted sweet potatoes or smoked salmon; all crammed into Vietnamese loaves from Dong Phuong Bakery in New Orleans East. All Killer Po Boys and all decidedly non-traditional.
Dan Stein takes a different tack. He imports Amoroso hoagie buns from Philadelphia and packs them with Mortadella, Genoa salami, hot Coppa, Provolone cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion then drizzles the affair with a garlic vinaigrette.
It is astoundingly delicious.
The peeling walls at Stein’s Deli would do Napoleon House proud; the floor, a cypher of decaying tile smashed into ancient concrete. How old is the building Dan Stein calls home? It appears to have been constructed during the Revolutionary War. Fittingly, a previous tenant was an antique mall.
We’re only in it for the po boys but if we were tipplers we would vector in on Stein’s back room where the best collection of craft beer in New Orleans lives. You can’t drink it here but if you’re in need of rare Belgium, Danish or American beers this is where the conversation begins.
At meal’s end we make note of Dan Stein himself moving about the room, busing tables, picking up stray napkins off the floor and asking after his patrons weal.
We often noted such behavior from the old Greek men who ran our favorite restaurants when we lived in Alabama. They could’ve been on a boat sipping a glass of Ouzo but there they were, working their asses off and minding each detail of their business.
2207 Magazine St
New Orleans, LA
Hours Of Operation
Sunday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Tuesday 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Wednesday 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Thursday 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Friday 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Saturday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM