the one-oh-one: Tuna Melt from Eisenberg’s [#101]


and so it begins – my quest for The 101 Best Sandwiches in New York City.

I like having goals. and I like being able to justify to my health-nut of a girlfriend that I have to do this because it’s cultural and I’ve just written a book admitting to actually how un-cultural I actually am. and there are worse ways to gain weight.


first up – the last one on the list. I chose this for no other reason than it’s proximity to my office [which – crazily enough, is right around the corner from The Flat Iron Building, which is kind of cool]. there was a closer one on the list, but it’s a small sandwich for a lot of money, so I figured I could leave that until I was closer to the end and this proved to not be one of my numerous ‘themes’ that died out as quickly as they began.

#101 – The Tuna Melt at Eisenberg’s

stepping into Eisenberg’s is stepping into the New York City diner I’d always wanted to visit as a kid. one long counter with brown-cushioned stools that were probably fashionable back in 1929, which just so happens to be the year this joint opened. to the left is the large owner presiding over his small domain, greeting everyone to make sure you’re not famous – ’cause if you are, the photo goes up on the wall. this was also one of those things I think I got from Friends or Seinfeld. he can almost tell who’s coming in ’cause of the list - you’re there for the Tuna Melt and a Matzo Ball soup – it’s pretty obvious. and so, in a few short minutes, it gets back to you in some tinfoil, along with a large Dixie cup full of Jewish goodness [hrm] and there you go.


I walked my sandwich and soup back to work with me ’cause I’m busy [hrm] and tucked in. it was a good sandwich. probably the best Tuna Melt I’ve ever had. it should be said that I haven’t had a lot of good Tuna Melts. in fact, if it weren’t for the list, I would’ve never ordered a Tuna Melt. tuna + melted cheese does not sound good to me, but this one was. somehow, they kept loads of mayo out while still keeping it from being dry. you can get it on all sorts of bread as well – I don’t remember which one I ordered ’cause I was too busy looking at a photo of Philip Seymour Hoffman. the soup wasn’t anything to be bowled over by. you’d expect the Chosen People’s Broth to taste of rich history, but it didn’t. nothing wrong with it, just forgettable.

all-in-all, a fine sandwich in an amazing setting. the entire tab ran me $14.60, which was a bit steep, but it’s in the middle of NYC and I would gladly pay $10 for a good lunch anyway, so I’m out $5…  which is worth it to have stepped back to the ’30’s.



One Comment

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  1. RB says:

    Eisenberg’s is one of the few remaining places to get a good egg cream.

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