Tucked into a tiny nook in Alphabet City lies Harry & Ida’s Meat and Supply Co., a sandwich shop and old-school general store offering up destination-worthy bites and a variety of housemade specialty ingredients.
The space is defined by rustic wood, hanging meats, and an assortment of pickled vegetables and sauces bottled and displayed like oddities in a circus sideshow. It looks like an upstate fishing cabin, quaint and nostalgic without feeling kitschy. Sit at the window and you might notice two skewered, dried, winged rat creatures protruding out of a battered wooden crate on the counter. It’s quirky but charming.
Chef Will Horowitz (Ducks Eatery, Seamstress) is the mad scientist helming the kitchen, experimenting with fermentation, foraging and unique combinations of flavors. His flagship sandwich, the Pops Pastrami, boasts thick slabs of impossibly moist pastrami adorned with buttermilk-fermented cucumber, cracked rye berry, anchovy mustard & dill. The menu changes seasonally, but will maintain its Jewish deli inspiration. Right now you’ll also find a Smoked Eel Sandwich with kalechee, horseradish cream, greens and maple sauce, Bluefish with pickled celery and watercress, and a tempting roster of sides like local mushrooms and garlic broccoli. Dried pig ears, locally foraged mushrooms, obscure snack items and butchered meats are all available to take home. Harry & Ida’s is a destination spot, just make sure to arrive hungry and curious.
189 Avenue A (12th St.)
Words and photos by Jason Greenspan