Foodie News x Restaurant Reviews x Hip-Hop Attitude

In 2010, I (Nick Love) spent over 45% of my annual income eating out at some of Atlanta's best (and worst) restaurants. So, who better to guide you through the city's crowded dining terrain?? Now, I, along with my team of Hip-Hop generation foodies, will expose and review ATL's newest hits, hidden gems, and old favorites. Hopefully, this blog will earn us a free meal or two while we point you guys in the direction of some good food and steer you away from the wackness. Let's eat!!!

Jan 19, 2012

Review: CLEVELAND STYLE DELI | Midwestern Taste With Southern Attitude

Name: Cleveland Style Deli
Cuisine: American
Neighborhood: Historic Sweet Auburn District
Address: 41 Jesse Hill Dr. Atlanta, GA 30303
Phone: 404-748-5109

While hunting for a quick bite to eat about a week ago, I somehow found myself outside of a small, somewhat easy to miss spot called Cleveland Style Deli.  Now, understand, I’m not from Cleveland nor do I have any ties to the city.  Actually, I’ve never even driven through the well known Ohio town.  So, I had no idea what to expect upon entering the doors of this place.  But, on this day, I figured I would go in and take a peek around and just leave if it wasn't to my particular liking.

As soon as I walked in, I felt like I had wondered outside of the ATL city limits and onto the pages of a Cleveland high school yearbook.  Even when I was greeted by the owner - Brenda Carter - I slightly ignored her words because I was so engulfed with my surroundings. From the LeBron James Cavaliers jersey display to the pictures of Brenda’s friends, family, and local celebrities back home to the three (3) framed list of celebrities that hail from Cleveland (who knew Halle Berry, Gerald Levert, and Dave Chapelle were all from the C-L-E??), it was more than evident that Brenda goes HARD for her beloved hometown!

After a few pleasantries were exchanged, Brenda suggested that I try a few of her signature menu items that really personified Cleveland's Bite Life (note to self: that might be a good show idea).  First up - the Corned Beef Sandwich, prepared with thinly sliced corned beef, Swiss cheese, and mustard.  Very simple but, surprisingly, very tasty.  Typically, you'd expect a good sandwich to require much more than that but it's lack of complexity was part of the appeal.

Corned Beef Sandwich
Next up - the Polish Boy.  a beef polish sausage topped with coleslaw, french fries, and BBQ sauce.  OMG!!!  This was absolutely my favorite item!!!  And, YES, it is as messy and delicious as it sounds!!!  Brenda says that this concoction is a true Cleveland staple.  It's been featured on Food Network and Travel Channel's Man vs Food.  One bite and you'll understand why.  The funny thing is, I'm normally one of those people that HATES for my food to touch.  But, the crispy fries, sweet BBQ sauce, and creamy coleslaw was truly a match made in foodie heaven!!!  Now, keep in mind, this is a $5 menu item.  But, IT'S WORTH EVERY SINGLE CENT!!!

Polish Boy
Finally, there was the Better Than Sex Cupcake.  A name like that sets the bar pretty high before you even take a bite.  But, while it didn't top the dirty deed, it definitely came close.  You'll find yourself doing a lot moaning after each spoonful.  Yes, spoonful.  The BTS Cupcake doesn't come out in the traditional way.  It's a chocolate cupcake served in a small, roughly 8 oz cup, topped with what seemed to be chocolate chips and more crumbled chocolate.  Ladies, this dessert is for you!!!  But, Brenda mentioned that this is a hit among a lot of the male police officers in the area.

Better Than Sex Cupcake
Now, even with all this great food, make no mistake, Cleveland Style Deli is no five-star restaurant.  It’s in a very small space that you could easily miss if you're not looking.  In fact, many people have noted that GPS navigation systems have trouble accurately locating it.  For the record, it's right near the intersection of Auburn Ave. and Jesse Hill Dr across from that old gray church that says "Jesus Saves" on the top.

There are chairs inside but, honestly, it's really not built for a dine-in experience (unless you don't mind standing at the counter).  There are no plates.  Everything is foil wrapped and bagged to go (all strategically done to create a true sense of a Cleveland deli).  And, let's not understate the parking situation.  Parking in the city is always an adventure due to Park Atlanta and they are rolling HEAVY in this area.  We would NEVER suggest the "run in and run out" method while trying to grab a bite here.

Overall, this a spot we suggest all of our Bite Lifers make their way over to.  Brenda, the owner, is a very sweet young woman who's worked extremely hard to create an authentic Cleveland experience right in the heart of downtown Atlanta.  Make sure you try the Polish Boy!!!  If you don't think it's awesome, you might need to take awesome lessons.

Happy Eating!!!

Grade: B
What's Great: Quick Service
What Ain't: Parking (Park Atlanta is a Beast), Location (Not GPS friendly)
Ideal For: Ohio natives, GSU Students, & Anyone living/working in the area

Cleveland Style Deli on Urbanspoon


Ronie said...

Their corn beef sandwich is off the chain. Wow! How I missed going there to eat. I'll be back.

Anonymous said...

Now I know that there are some true Cleveland transplants down in Hot Lanta! Get on over there and get some of your home cookin!

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