Best Deli (Macomb County)
TIE: Kowalski Sausage Company/New York Deli
New York Deli and Kowalski Sausage Company did not tie for first place in this category for being so alike. Rather, they tied because they offer the best of two different styles of deli. You couldn’t ask for a more classic example of traditional ways vs. today’s modern, on-the-run lifestyle.
The traditional-style deli is represented by Kowalski. The Kowalskis, who emigrated from Poland, began offering homemade Polish kielbasa in the 1920s at their grocery store on Chene in Detroit. The company has remained family-owned to this day, firmly holding onto to its original recipes and traditions while expanding its services and stores to keep up with the times.
Born of a different era, New York Deli was created as an answer to today’s hectic, on-the-go lifestyle. It offers large, hearty sandwiches, quickly prepared to your specifications, that can be eaten on the run, or while relaxing in the dining area.
While Kowalski also offers carry-out sandwiches and soups for lunch, it remains more the place you go to purchase sliced meats, cheese and bread to make your own sandwiches at home. It’s also become a tradition for many Detroit-area families to visit their local Kowalski deli around the holidays, to purchase their fresh (not frozen) sausage as well as ham and other treats.
Seeing that Kowalski and New York Deli both thrive while operating in the same area shows that metro Detroiters can’t choose between the traditional way and the new way of doing things. They like the best of both.