A blog about great food and fantastic restaurants all over the USA, especially in Utah.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Musumeci's Italian Deli

I have to admit i don't think i would have entered this hole-in-the-wall deli had it not been for a good friend of mine, Jonathan Tietz. We were in downtown Salt Lake when he suggested we grab a sandwich.

First of all, we couldn't even find the place. He hadn't been there for a long time. We drove around the block twice because we kept passing it.  Then, once we found it, we opened the front door and had to walk down a sketchy hallway to this mafia-style back dining room where only two customers were seated eating some pasta. So then we both had to go to the bathroom pretty bad so we go down into the basement where the bathroom was. Water was dripping from a pipe above the ancient, rusted out toilet. There was a bucket placed on the side of the toilet under the leak. Wedged between the pipe and the wall was an old paper cup folded and creased just right so the water would trickle down it and fall directly into the bucket.  Needless to say, the bathroom experience didn't help with the feeling of remorse that had been creeping up on me since i entered this hole!  I recommitted myself with some self talk by telling myself i had probably eaten in worse places while on my mission in Costa Rica.

So next we enter the ordering area where it looks like a father and heavy-set son, in his 30's, are busy cooking up pasta and cleaning up the place. I walk up to the counter, and as i always do when visiting a new restaurant, i ask the son what he recommends. Out of his mouth came the most dreaded words an abnormally indecisive person could ever anticipate, "Everythings good."  I was thinking, "Why thank you so much Mr. Helpful!" Anyway, i could tell he was probably tiring a little from working in a sandwich shop for his father for the past 15 years.  I brushed off his abrasiveness because i felt had no idea the hell he'd been through.  So i said to myself, "Screw it! I'll just take whatever Jonathan gets." And that's what i did. I ended up with a pastrami sandwich topped with provolone.  I ordered some banana peppers and a few other veggies to put on the sandwich as well, but i was done with this guy.  I just wanted to eat quick and get out.

We were told to wait in the dining area and our food would be brought out to us.  The guy that looked like the father ended up bringing the food out and proudly placed each sandwich down on our table. We dug in!

The sandwiches was delicious. This place uses all sorts of imported meats and cheeses. The bread was soft and tasty.  I'd like to go back to try some of the pastas. 

In my opinion, this isn't a place to take a date. It's more of the type of place you go if you ever need to order a hit on someone or discuss some other type of illegitimate business deal you don't want anyone overhearing you talking about. Of course i say all this in jest.

Musumeci's definitely could use a facelift, but it has character. It's a little on the dirty side. I'm not sure how far above the cutoff they were when the health inspectors came by, but they've been in business for 15 years. The food was great and i didn't notice any sicknesses or strange growths on my body after eating there. It was a memorable experience, and there aren't a ton of places you can go these days to have such a unique dining experience. Go check them out! It really is delicious food for a reasonable price.

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