Deli Delights at The Pantry

by Shoshanna McCollum

DINING REVIEW: Deli Delights at The Pantry

The Pantry

1 Bay Walk, Ocean Beach

631-583-7467 •

Ocean Beach is blessed with many fine dining choices, but we all know that sometimes there is nothing more satisfying that a New York deli sandwich, and that’s where The Pantry reins as king.

I am no stranger to this market. I live down the street from it and have a house charge account. Often, I run in there when I am lacking a recipe ingredient, or have a craving for ice cream, but I often don’t give the deli its due. Now I realize that was a terrible oversight on my part.

Sandwiches aren’t just for tourists and transients after all, sometimes you just need a sandwich made by someone else, yet prepared with love and attention. I needed that the other day after a stressful OB Village board meeting ran too long. It was rainy miserable weather and only comfort food would do. In no time at all it was not a question of if I was going to order a Pantry deli sandwich, only which one?

Many selections were tempting. The Kismet sounded like kismet – roast beef, potato cake, horseradish, cheddar and lemon aioli on a ciabatta bun – alas it was preseason and they did not have all the ingredients on hand.

Deli Delights At The Pantry

Service with a smile: My Lighthouse sandwich!

“We have other choices,” the dark-haired fellow behind the counter with a nice smile said to me. “How about the Dock Master?” Cool name, and chicken cutlet with bacon and mozzarella on a Kaiser roll sounded good, but… “How about the Lighthouse?” Cracked pepper mill turkey, Swiss cheese, coleslaw and Russian dressing on a hero roll – okay that one was calling me like a beacon!

I toured the place while the sandwich was being made. I always admired the fine selection of gourmet cheeses The Pantry carries – those details count. And for years I’ve been singing the praises of their fruit pies, always baked on premises and a best kept secret on Fire Island – peach, strawberry/rhubarb, as well as blueberry being my personal favorites – all pair well with vanilla ice cream.

In no time at all that beauty was handed to me wrapped in white butcher paper and served to me with a smile. The Pantry sells Hal’s chips, which are a cut above, and for my beverage I took a chance on a probiotic soda called Poppi in strawberry lemon flavor. It’s nice when eclectic selections are offered.

I dined in the comfort of my own home, and what a generous sandwich it was. Cracked pepper mill smoked turkey is a trademarked name from Boar’s Head, which is what all deli meats aspire to be, and the flavor blended in perfect harmony with the Swiss and slaw. It was too much to finish in one sitting, so I saved the other half, which was even better the next day because I added some avocado I had on hand. As for the Hal’s chips, well shame on me, I enjoyed every last one, and washed it all down with the probiotic soda. It was only 25 calories, so I didn’t hate myself for drinking every last drop in the can.

It’s Memorial Day Weekend, so The Pantry will be fully stocked and ready to serve all summer long. What are you waiting for?