With the Times mourning the dearth of traditional delicatessens (while also pointing to new-wave delis like Mile End), let’s acknowledge an old-timer that’s been very much neglected, if only because it’s located in a Staten Island strip mall. Golden’s looks plenty cheesy from outside (cartoons of Seinfeld, the Clintons, and the like grace the windows), but when you walk in, you’re greeted by something completely unexpected: half of a thirties subway car, complete with eighties ads and maps (owner Ray Pannone purchased and installed the car in 1985).
As you can see in our slideshow, you can actually dine in the car, on knoblewurst, knishes, blintzes, tongue sandwiches, and the rest of the classics. Oh, and in addition to egg creams, there are boozy piña coladas (to warm you up for the almost equally spectacular Jade Island tiki bar next door). There’s surprisingly little about Golden’s on the net — though its cheeky menu claims that its pastrami and corned beef are traditionally hand-cured, Staten Islanders will often skip it in favor of Harold’s New York Deli across the bridge in Edison, New Jersey. But you can read more at Forgotten NY and Dining Kosher.
Golden’s Kosher Deli & Restaurant, 2845 Richmond Ave.; 718-494-6000