Article by Eric H.
I read the sad news on the Joan and Ed's Deli Web Site today that its famous and beloved Natick, Mass., New York style delicatessen will close its doors after June 20, 2010. How sad, just goes to show that our favorite restaurants, for the most part, do not live forever.
Joan and Ed stated on their Web Site that the "economic conditions have made it impossible to go on... Joan & Ed will begin an early retirement." We wish them the best -- what nice, nice people and what fantastic breakfast, lunch, dinner and desserts they have brought to us through the years. I was always impressed, too, how Joan and Ed would walk around the restaurant and talk with customers. This wasn't some forced, fake interaction, the way you see at some other local restaurants. They were the real deal, sort of like your nice grandma and grandpa with considerable culinary talents and vision deciding to open up a restaurant.
Joan and Ed's has been in business for more than 33 years. Formerly located in Shopper's World in Framingham (with beginnings in 1977), Joan and Ed's eventually moved, in 1994, to the Sherwood Plaza in Natick. The entrance was most interesting and unique with Judaica gifts, the lively deli counter (always bustling) and the huge display cases of desserts. They had quite a few "personalities" working at the restaurant, including the loud, affable, pony-tailed man at the deli counter and waitresses that could converse with the best of them while always giving extra special attention to the many kids who would rather skip the meal and get right to the dessert.
We will greatly miss the "Jewish" comfort food and yummy desserts. Some dishes I will greatly miss: cheese kugel, latkes (potato pancakes), meat knishes, the Turkey Crier (Turkey, Swiss, onion, and tomato and Russian dressing), lean pastrami, chicken stew and meatloaf. Actually, I could go on and on but you get the picture -- this was homemade food at its finest and with an upkeep in quality that belied its generic strip mall location.
Although I am not a sugar fiend, I must say that the thing I'll miss the most at Joan and Ed's are the desserts. The fresh apple strudel, eclairs, blueberry pie, chocolate cake and strawberry cheesecake --amongst the myriad of other incredible treats -- always served as a staple of our dining experiences here.
People say that New York City delis are the best in the country and that places like Boston couldn't compare. Sometimes, I wonder, though, if we took Joan and Ed's deli selections, put them in a New York deli, and didn't tell anyone about the switch if they would know the difference. Bottom line: Joan and Ed's really set a high standard in Jewish deli food, and they are to be commended for making us dining customers happy through the years. Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you!
Article by Eric H.