PORTSMOUTH, NH – Nobody makes your favorite foods quite like your grandma. So for Gregg Schweitzer, nobody does it quite like his Bubby, Yiddish for grandmother. In honor of her, he’s put all of the foods he loves and adores into his restaurant, Bubby’s Delicatessen.
Located in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Bubby’s is your classic New York style deli, where they serve breakfast and lunch all day long.
“It’s very welcoming. It’s a little bit on a loud side which is kind of what a classic deli should be. It should seem slightly chaotic in a good way, but it’s a fun space. It’s not too big. It’s not too small. The menu is very much classic deli in that we incorporate a lot of breakfast and lunch items,” Gregg said.
“If you want to try certain ethnic dishes, this is a great place to try things you’ve never had before. Or if you just want to get a traditional turkey or roast beef sandwich, you can do that too. We have a little bit of everything for everyone.”
This may be the only authentic Jewish deli in all of New Hampshire, so Gregg felt the need to fill the void. When he made the menu, he included a Yiddish glossary to help folks who may not be familiar with this kind of fare. So you’ll be confident in what you’re getting when you order latkes, knishes or kugel; or if you just need a good old dose of Jewish Penicillin in the form of Matzo Ball Soup.
If you’re looking for something that will take your breath away, you need to have something called the Heart Attack. This life-changing sandwich features hot pastrami, corned beef, Cole slaw, Swiss cheese and Russian dressing, stuffed between two crispy potato pancakes, for a stack that is as messy as it is tasty.
“It’s definitely a fork-and-knife type sandwich,” Gregg said. “You really can’t pick it up. You can try; it probably wouldn’t work out too well for you. Most people don’t finish it.”
And try as they may, most people also can’t tackle the Triple Trouble Sandwich.
“The Triple Trouble is two half-pound burgers with a potato latke wedged in between. It’s all served in between an onion roll and it’s got cheese, and bacon, and lettuce, and tomato on it. It’s kind of like eating a burger and fries in one bite,” Gregg described.
If you’re looking for a triumvirate of tasty, he says to try Bubby’s Trifecta.
“It’s a triple-meat sandwich with corned beef, pastrami and our own house-cured beef tongue. A lot of people order it because it’s got all three of the classic deli meats in it. If you’re undecided on what to order, it’s a good way to get everything.”
Of course, there are always the classics, and nobody does a Reuben better than Bubby’s. This deli standard stacks hot corned beef, Swiss, sauerkraut, and Russian dressing on crunchy grilled rye bread.
“I think ours is great because we make almost everything from scratch,” Gregg said. “You get a little bit of that cold sauerkraut; you get the steamed corned beef and melted cheese; and the tangy Russian dressing. It really is the perfect storm. It’s a great sandwich. ”
When you want something light, one typically turns to a salad. But at Bubby’s, the salad is anything but light, and appropriately named after that famous episode of Seinfeld.
“The Big Salad is a classic Seinfeld episode reference,” Gregg explained. “It’s got turkey, ham, Swiss cheese, hard-boiled eggs, over greens. It’s hard to actually finish a salad here.”
Since breakfast is served all day, you can get an egg sandwich piled with meat and veggies served on a fresh bagel at any time; or blintzes stuffed with sweet cheese and topped with fruit compote. But there’s nothing better than a Benny, particularly when it’s topped with brisket.
“It’s two poached eggs with homemade Hollandaise sauce, topped over our homemade brisket, and instead of on an English muffin, we put it on our homemade potato latkes,” described Gregg. “You get a little bit of the juicy brisket meat. You get that Hollandaise sauce which has a little tart, lemon flavor, and obviously, the poached eggs are runny and delicious.”
With prices topping out in the mid- teens, the food and affordability are definitely “Bubby approved”.
You can find Bubby’s Delicatessen at 241 Hanover Street in Portsmouth, and online at bubbysdeli.com.
Watch Phantom Gourmet on Saturdays and Sundays at 10:30 and 11 a.m. on myTV38.