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Local Deli-cacies | Foodie

Local Deli-cacies | Foodie


Bringing satisfaction to Boulder County and beyond

Sometimes you just crave certain things piled high between two slices of bread. The right cut of ham. Delicately sliced pastrami. Or maybe an inventive mix of meat, cheese, mayo, or other spreads.

When we feel that way, there are four area delis that we’re not going to pass up. Most of them are in Boulder County, but one of them is a location in Denver that’s led us to detour multiple times off I-25 just to enjoy whatever they were serving on rye, sourdough, or a soft roll. These eateries remind us not just of how creative and satisfying sandwiches can be, but of the beloved busy delis and caterers on the East Coast, drawing crowds for a quick meal.

Kenny Lou’s Deli and Sushi at Button Rock Bakery in Lafayette

If there’s one spot that reminds me of East Coast Jewish delis, this would be it. Matzo ball soup? Check. Celery Soda? It’s there. Smoked meats? Absolutely. But what’s also apparent is the love that Kenny Lou’s Deli puts into his menu items. Chef John Bauer was inspired by his Jewish and Italian roots to create items that range from Italian sandwiches and chicken parm to fried bologna. Just because they’re wide-ranging doesn’t mean that they compromise on quality. We’ve toured their back kitchen and can vouch for the fact that this restaurant is organized. They’ve got their process down, and it shows in how they make so much food taste so good.

Snarf’s Sandwiches throughout the Front Range

Snarf’s, a locally founded deli chain, isn’t afraid to put anything between two slices of bread. They even responded to our request to create the perfect Thanksgiving leftovers sandwich, which was arguably even better than the holiday meal itself. On their regular menu, they have specialty sandwiches such as their French Dip, Artichoke and Feta, and Prime Rib and Provolone on fresh-baked bread plus toppings including their own cured giardiniera peppers. The staff at the Gunbarrel location were attentive, engaging and fun, making our lunch experience joke-filled and tastebud satisfying.

Photo credit: Deborah Cameron

Great Harvest Bread Company in Boulder

Samples fresh from the oven. Gooey, rich cinnamon rolls and other baked goods that bring smells that stick with me the rest of the day. That’s just part of what I appreciate about Great Harvest Bread Company. I also love the sandwiches, thick slices of bread that hold even thicker amounts of meats, almost too much to get your mouth around. Specialty chips and counter service that’s efficient (as a deli should be) but also smiling and personable. That’s what we find each time we go to Great Harvest Bread Company. We miss the outpost that used to be in Longmont (The location is now a P.F. Chang’s To Go.) but every chance we get, we stop into the Boulder location atArapahoe Ave. and Folsom St. and are grateful.

Leven Deli Company in Denver

We’re honestly never sure why, but this restaurant reminds us of the diner in Tick, Tick… Boom!, the Andrew Garfield musical about the creator of Stomp. Leven Deli is an easy stop off for anyone looking to spend an afternoon in the Denver Art Museum. Their bursting sandwiches are fresh and satisfying and a lot of people head there for brunch. Their soups are what I love, however. Most diners can’t pass up their mushroom soup, but I love the New England clam chowder because it’s light on the fatty creaminess but still really satisfying. They’ve also got a small, carefully curated wine menu and fresh cocktails. Whatever you order, if the weather is right, don’t miss the chance to eat outside and people watch the museum crowd. It’s a pleasant way to pass a few hours.


Deborah Cameron
Deb brings a passion for community journalism and for the local food scene. She started out as an intern and over the years grew into our current Cuisine Editor. She has appeared in multiple publications including the Longmont Leader, The Left Hand Valley Courier, Ms. Mayhem, Finance101, and Ask.com. When not writing she's eating, road tripping, dog-parking, or watching high school softball. She moved to Colorado from Seattle in the early 2000s after spending a year traveling the U.S. in a teal Ford Escort hatchback. She lives with her husband, two teenagers, and a rescue dog named Charlie.

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