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Cupertino’s N.Y. Bagels and Deli [81]

by Ethan on July 6th, 2012

Generally speaking, as you drive south along the east coast, the tea gets sweeter, the barbeque better, and the bagels worse. Most Richmonders I have talked to have been fooled into thinking that the bagel-shaped breads at Einstein Brothers or Panera are good. They’re a hoax. Luckily, West Enders have a good alternative. I have been singing the praises of Cupertino’s N.Y. Bagels and Deli for years. Good bagels, easily the best in Richmond, and they even have Taylor Ham Pork Roll! But until we franchise into “52 Breakfasts” that review will have to wait.

Cupertino’s also serves lunch. Fifteen sandwiches hitting all the classics you’d expect from a NY-style Deli: Reubens, hot pastrami, etc. But, predictably, Adam and I both zeroed quickly on that Richmond staple, the Sailor. Longtime Richmonders (and 52L followers) know that the grilled knockwurst, pastrami and Swiss on rye is a Richmond specialty, and a good measure of a lunch spot. Given how satisfying Cupertino’s breakfasts are, we had high hopes. Unfortunately, we both found it wanting. The meat(s) of the sandwich were right on. (Adam and I disagreed on the knockwurst… he found it bland I thought it was fine). Where the sandwich fell apart, literally, was the bread. We know it’s no good for us, but we prefer that greasy grilled rye over toasted bread. Our Sailors this day were hard to manage and sloppy. We also had shoestring fries and they were just right.

Judging a New York Deli on a Richmond sandwich might not be fair (then again, it might) but if you’re going to offer this essential sandwich, it should be right, and it just wasn’t. We’ll continue to praise the bagels at Cupertino’s to anyone that will listen, but if we go back for lunch, I think I’ll have the Italian instead.

Lunch topics: one-handed beer football, installing aftermarket car Bluetooth, Hotpocalypse, Apple Customer Service, On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness 3, Amazon as a consumer electronics manufacturer

Edited on 7/26/2012 because my friend Melissa, a NJ native, tells me that only southerners call pork roll “Taylor Ham”.

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