As St. Patrick’s Day approaches, Clevelander’s across the region experience that special craving for mountains of corned beef, thick-sliced rye bread and a hearty helping of sauerkraut — of course, we’re talking about Reubens.
As you gear up for the holiday, here are some of the tastiest places to snag the signature sandwich around town.
Larder Delicatessen & Bakery
Why we love it: Have you ever tried pastrami infused with fungal enzymes? Larder Delicatessen & Bakery on West 29th Street sets its Reuben apart by using fungal enzyme-infused pastrami instead of corned beef. "If we put our pastrami under a microscope that can read and catalog aromatic and flavonoid compounds, ours will be about 40% higher than ones that don't use these fungal enzymes," says owner Jeremy Umansky. "As a chef, you're exposed to various cuisines and ways of doing things with food. Over time, many of these processes develop naturally based on your ingredients." For them, it made perfect sense to rub these enzymes on a piece of meat and prove that they could make pastrami taste that much more dynamic. $16, Tuesday - Saturday 12 p.m. - 6 p.m., 1455 W 29th St., Cleveland, https://larderdb.com
Why we love it: Urban Kitchen converges a family-style dining experience with cafe-like menus. The food is fresh, cooked to order, and the proportions are reasonable for the price. "The biggest thing about our Reuben is what we use to cook it," says owner Mohamed Sadek. "You know, everybody boils corn beef, but it's the seasonings, and it's the things that go in it that actually add up." $14.99, Monday - Friday: 9 a.m. – 8:30 p.m., Saturday: 10 a.m. – 8:30 p.m., 9751 Chester Ave, Cleveland, https://www.urbancle.com
T.J.s Butcher Block and Deli
Why we love it: For $12.99 T.Js stuffs your Reuben with all the essentials: Rye bread, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, half a pound of corned beef, and thousand island dressing. "We make it with love,” says owner Kevin MacDonald.
$12.99, Monday - Friday: 9 a.m. – 8:30 p.m., Saturday: 10 a.m.– 8:30 p.m., 9751 Chester Ave, Cleveland, http://tjsbutcherblock.com/
Why we love it: This Irish pub and restaurant prides itself on delicious ingredients and the time and care taken to produce the meals. "We get a high-quality product and ensure we take care of it all the way through," says The Harp's chef Joseph Nagy. "There are different sides available. It would come with house-cut potato chips, but if you didn't want that, you could also get fries, onion rings, tater tots, or coleslaw." $13, Tuesday - Wednesday: 11:30 a.m. - 9 p.m., Thursday - Saturday: 11:30 a.m. - 10:00 p.m., Sunday: 11:00 a.m. - 9 p.m., 4408 Detroit Ave, Cleveland, http://www.the-harp.com/
Corky & Lenny's
Why we love it: Corky & Lenny's has been a Cleveland landmark since opening in 1956. The traditional Jewish deli, known for its massive sandwiches, malt beverages, and laid-back atmosphere, also serves up a mean Reuben. Their secret? As much homemade corned beef as the bread can hold, served with potato salad. "We cook our own corned beef; it's very juicy," says owner Earl Stein. "You get about half a pound of meat on the sandwich." $16.95, Tuesday - Sunday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., 27091 Chagrin Blvd, Woodmere, https://www.corkyandlennys.com/
Why we love it: It doesn't get much more original than Joe's Classic Reuben. This family-run company has been serving Rocky River on St. Patrick’s Day since 1994. $16.25,19215 Hilliard Blvd., Rocky River, myjoesdeli.com
Why we love it: The Reuben wrap switches it up for Clevelander's in need of their corned beef fix. Pro-tip: skip the Downtown crowds on St. Paddy's Day and try this unconventional take at this convenience store, which opened in 1998. $12.50, 5185 Smith Road, Brook Park, express-deli.com
Don’t worry, we didn’t forget about Slyman’s. Head to our separate guide detailing three ways to secure Slyman’s corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day at clevelandmagazine.com.