D.C. gets compared to New York City in many ways, for better or worse. It’s a fact of District life and while many take up arms against it, DGS Delicatessen, Dupont Circle’s shining new Jewish deli, embraces it with a wink and a smile.
“We’re respectful of the tradition and food of a New York deli but try to incorporate D.C. style,” says DGS partner and former Tallula chef Barry Koslow. “To us, the Jewish experience started in Eastern Europe, through Western Europe. There are North African influences on the food from there to New York and finally to D.C. There are a lot of classic recipes but we want to make it accessible.”
And accessible it is, offering a menu full of the deli standbys DCists have been wanting for years. The menu sports classics like potato latkes and corned beef sandwiches as well as variations on New York Jewish-deli themes, like the Grilled Eggplant Reuben (emmenthaler, sauerkraut, Russian dressing on double-baked Rye) or the Salmon Pastrami, pictured above (with labneh, pickled mustard seeds and cucumber salad on a Montreal bagel).
Will they offer cheesecake? Of course, though it won’t be New York style. In fact, it’s “DC Style,” a playful stab at everyone’s proclivity to adopt the recipe from our neighbors to the north. DGS’s take, the “DC Style” take, is less dense, a bit fluffier. Their other dessert options are less playful but just as mouthwatering, like the Sweet Noodle Kugel with salted caramel ice cream.
The new deli–open tonight for dinner starting at 5:30pm–will eventually also offer a deli brunch on both Saturday and Sunday. Guests can enjoy a range of items from pastrami hash with fried duck eggs, roasted peppers and mustard sauce to a plate of Challah french toast with toasted almonds and Virginia maple syrup.
All their pickled items are prepared in-house, from their fish to the eggs to the vegetables, and their mustard–tangy, sweet and sour–is also made under the DGS roof. All their meats are smoked and cured there too, some preparation requiring days for just a few slices of tender goods.
What could compliment their bright, playful menu further? The bar, of course, with cocktails and beer and wine options all hand-selected by beverage director Brian Zipin to pair well with every food option available. Wines are approachable and fairly priced, while the four beer options on draft offer a fun, ever changing line-up for customers.
With a solid line-up like this, we’re ready for lunch, dinner, brunch or a quick bite at any time, on any day of the week. If this is “DC Style,” we can’t get enough.