Edison, NJ 08837
- Cost: $$$
- Alcohol: None
- Parking: Private Lot
- Take Out: Yes
January 9, 2011
If HUGE was an ethnic food, Harold’s New York Deli would win the category hands down. The smallest sandwiches feed four people easily. I saw a kid posing for a picture next to his chocolate chip pancake the size of a hub cap. The cakes in the display case are literally two feet tall.
Get past the super-sizes, and the food is quite good. The extensive menu is chock full of large deli classics that will make your mouth water – blintzes, knishes, kreplach, smoked fish, beef tongue, brisket, kasha varnishkas, and a 60 oz. bowl of soup with one matzoh. I didn’t bring three generations of my extended family, so I barely tasted anything, but what I had was very good. Order the chopped liver and you get three pounds of some excellent, slightly sweet chicken liver. Perfect to spread on rye bread with sliced onions. The meat piled on my eighteen dollar pastrami sandwich was very tasty, though not as fatty as some versions. With extra rye slices from the pickle bar, I could have made eight human-sized sandwiches. I pity the solo diner who comes here looking for a quick bite.
Harold’s is attached to the lobby of the Holiday Inn at Raritan Center off of Route 514 (Woodbridge Avenue). Modeled on New York’s Carnegie Deli, Harold’s New York Deli trades on nostalgia with old time photos covering the walls of a large, diner-style, dining area. There’s the aforementioned “world’s largest pickle bar” with cole slaw, sauerkraut, cherry peppers, pickled tomatoes and dill, sour and half-sour pickles; draft Stewart’s birch beer from a wooden cask; and a New York Egg Cream on the menu. Good food and efficient service, but like the Carnegie, it feels a bit touristy.
Definitely worth a visit – with the entire family, a business convention, or a hungry Harley motorcycle club – but I can’t make this Harold’s an EthnicNJ.com favorite with “New York” in the name and excellent Jersey Jewish deli’s like Hobby’s (Newark) alive and well in the Garden State.
(This Harold’s appears to be nearly identical to the Harold’s New York Deli, also attached to a Holiday Inn, in Parsippany. They must have a common history, but the Edison Harold’s makes a point on its website of distinguishing itself from all other NJ Harold’s’s, specifically the Parisppany one, but also I imagine, the well known Harold’s II Kosher Suprette in Paramus.)