Archive for the tag 'roast beef'

Photo by Erica Sherman

Photo by Erica Sherman

It was just last week that Brennan & Carr was named one of New York City’s most iconic meat dishes by Eater NY. Was rival roast beef peddler Roll-N-Roaster (2901 Emmons Avenue) going to be ignored?

C’mon. Nobody puts Roll-N-Roaster in a corner. They put them on “Best of” lists. Specifically, CBS News “Best of” lists, which has to be among the best “Best of” lists because they once named us Best Local Affairs Website and obviously have good taste.

The news outlet calls Roll-N-Roaster one of eight best sandwiches in Brooklyn, describing it thusly:

While “You can have CHEEZ on anything you PLEEZ” would be enough to entice even the strongest will-powered man into Roll-n-Roaster, there are reasons galore to visit – though most do include said CHEEZ. First and foremost is the wonderful roast beef sandwich; thin slices of beef with a pink center arrive piled high on a soft bun, a sandwich that would put to shame that fast food sandwich chain that claims to make these.

One week, two local roast beef sandwiches on “Best of” lists, and never a consensus on which is better.

Congratulations to both of our meateries!

Source: wallyg/Flickr

Big ups to Brennan & Carr, featured this week in Eater NY’s roundup of New York City’s 21 most iconic meat dishes.

The 3424 Nostrand Avenue business has been serving up hot beef dipped in broth and slapped on a bun for 76 years, and remains a family institution. It’s a frequent competitor for best roast beef in the city and is locked in fierce competition for that title with Roll-N-Roaster. Undisputed, though, is that our area has the city’s best roast beef. Just which of the two locales dishes it up is an internecine battle we’ll watch from the sidelines, thank you very much.

Anyway, Eater, having to explain the quirky, exotic behaviors of native Southern Brooklynites to New York City’s army of transplanted foodies, goes into anthropologist mode:

[Brennan & Carr serves] a roast beef-filled Kaiser bun that’s liberally doused in a thin, salty liquid known as “the broth.” Many customers choose to get this sandwich double dipped, while others order this same sandwich with cheese whiz.

Mhm, yes. And some who order it can even use sign language to demand a banana.

Anyway, Brennan & Carr contends with Nathan’s Famous hot dogs as the cheapest items on the list, which also includes a $145 côte de boeuf and the Peter Luger porterhouse. That’s some fine company.

Now, a question nearly as eternal as which local roast beefery is the best: what neighborhood is Brennan & Carr in? At Nostrand Avenue and Avenue U, it’s solidly Homecrest in my book, which, for lack of any stature as an actual neighborhood, passes as Sheepshead Bay. But Marine Park residents have for years tried to claim it as their own. Eater refers to the restaurant as a “beloved Gravesend institution,” which makes me wonder if they’re using a mid-19th Century map, and others still have called it – gah – Midwood!


[Other Brennan & Carr shout-outs we’ve covered: Eater NY in 2011, Man v Food’s Adam Richman gives some praise, Urban Spoon names it the top neighborhood restaurant in 2011]

A portion of the Gears 'n' Grub illustration of Roll-N-Roaster

The Village Voice chose Roll-N-Roaster (2901 Emmons Avenue)as the subject for the inaugural post of “Gears ‘n’Grub,” their new illustrated series about foodstuffs found while the author bikes through the city.

The writer, L. Nichols, took a ride over to “Bottle Beach” – the name hipsters have given to what we know better as Dead Horse Bay – before finding himself in front of a plate of roast beef and Cheez fries.

Nichols made a wise choice by going with the standard Express-Line order, except for one rookie mistake – ordering soda instead of home-made Lemonade.

Looks like he’ll have to get back on that bike and take another trip down here. You want to order soda at Brennan & Carr’s? Go right ahead. Order soda from Roll-N-Roaster? Consider your meal incomplete.

Welcome back to The Bite, Sheepshead Bites’ weekly column where we explore the foodstuffs of Sheepshead Bay. Each week we check out a different offering from one of the many restaurants, delis, food carts, bakeries, butchers, fish mongers, or grocers in our neighborhood. If it’s edible, we’ll take a bite.

Ladies and gentlemen, let’s get ready to rumble! In this corner, Wheeler’s roast beef “all the way” hero.

The Bite expands the battle for the roast beef crown of Sheepshead Bay. With Roll-n-Roaster, Brennan & Carr, Bassett’s and John’s Meat Market all offering superlative roast beef sandwiches, is the neighborhood ready for another? The Bite says, “Hell, yes!”

Wheeler’s (1705 Sheepshead Bay Road) roast beef sandwich offering takes a different tack than the competitors by going a bit upscale. The roast beef “all the way” hero ($8.95, includes french fries) serves up “prime” top round roasted until it’s well done, adds au jus, melts mozzarella cheese on top of that and sends it into battle on a garlic bread hero.

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bassetts deli sheepshead bay brooklyn

Welcome back to The Bite, Sheepshead Bites’ weekly column where we explore the foodstuffs of Sheepshead Bay. Each week we check out a different offering from one of the many restaurants, delis, food carts, bakeries, butchers, fish mongers, or grocers in our neighborhood. If it’s edible, we’ll take a bite.

It’s time to visit another old standby – Bassett Deli & Caterers (1404 Avenue X) and try something new. New, to me at least. This week’s “Bite” is Bassett’s roast beef hero.

It’s hard to believe, but I’ve never had the roast beef sandwich at Bassett’s. I’ve been a customer for years enjoying just about everything else on the menu, but not the roast beef. Bassett’s offerings are so diverse and plentiful that eating  a roast beef sandwich, which I can get in just about every deli and bodega in the neighborhood, never entered my mind.  But, after my visit to John’s Meat Market back in May, a roast beef sandwich has been on my lunch plate fairly often. How does Bassett’s stack up?

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Store-roasted roast beef, provolone, and roasted peppers

Welcome back to The Bite, Sheepshead Bites’ weekly column where we explore the foodstuffs of Sheepshead Bay. Each week we check out a different offering from one of the many restaurants, delis, food carts, bakeries, butchers, fish mongers, or grocers in our neighborhood. If it’s edible, we’ll take a bite.

Today we visit a rare breed: a true butcher shop. Yes, over on Avenue X just off Coney Island Avenue there is a real butcher where you can find meat cut to order, sandwiches made by request and a small smattering of groceries.

Now The Bite hasn’t gotten into cooking yet, so I was looking for something I could eat right there in the store. Frankly, there weren’t too many options. This is a butcher shop, not a restaurant, after all, so I decided to check out the deli counter.

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Yes, boys and girls, it is that time of year again — for the wildly popular Sheepshead Bay tradition in which we get to guzzle copious amounts of beer (mmmmm…beer), cram our cakeholes with juicy roast beef sandwiches, and bet on the ponies — all for a good cause.

The St. Mark School’s annual “Beef and Beer: A Night at the Races” will be held in the school’s gymnasium, East 18th Street and Avenue Z, May 14 from 6:00 to 11:00 p.m. (doors open at 6:00, the first race is at 7:00 p.m.).

Folks, I confess… I was born in Sheepshead Bay and have lived here for most of my life, but I have never been to this time-honored fundraiser, and for that I am deeply ashamed. That said, when I read Ned’s account of the event last year…

We were joined by three of the coolest little old ladies this side of Nevada. We gambled and lost – over and over – while the three little ladies won – over and over – and rubbed it in our faces. My friends and I wolfed down a couple of pitchers and roast beef sandwiches, and yelled exaggerated cheers and jeers for the galloping horses on the screen.

…I was like, “Whoa. That’s some crazy s—!” Strapping young 20-somethings betting on horsies with little old ladies? Yeah, I definitely think I need to check that out.

Beef & Beer raises funds for the St. Mark School and St. Mark Sports Program. Deets are as follows: Tickets are $15, which include the roast beef sandwiches and beer, and are available at the door of the St. Mark gym, in the St. Mark Sports office, in the St. Mark Business office, or by calling either (718) 769-5374 or (347) 274-0573. Tables of 10 are available for reservation, and you MUST be 21 or older to attend.


Serious Eats included both Roll-N-Roaster’s (2901 Emmons Avenue) and Brennan & Carr’s (3432 Nostrand Avenue) roast beef sandwiches in their roundup of the city’s 26 best sandwiches.

Our reaction? Duh.

For years, the duo have been duking it out for the title of Best Roast Beef Sandwich, and are regularly highlighted as amongst the top in the city.

But I’m getting tired of it. Serious Eats’ list was created for that holiest of holidays: National Sandwich Day. Having two local places included in the list is an honor – no doubt – but I want to start hearing about Sheepshead Bay’s other great sandwiches.

How about a hot sub from Bassett Deli (1404 Avenue X)? A lamb gyro from Anatolian Gyro Restaurant (1605 Sheepshead Bay Road)? A chicken sandwich on a sweet bun from one of the Chinese bakeries?

How ’bout a new place, one no one’s heard about, your secret go-to joint during a lunch break?

National Sandwich Day may have passed, but help us make a belated list of the must-try sandwiches in Sheepshead Bay. Where do you eat?

Anyone who has stopped by Roll-N-Roaster this week probably got accosted by four or five people trying to jam cake, champagne and orange juice down their throat. And at least two kids we saw were horrified by an employee’s attempt to make them balloon animals. But it’s all in the name of fun.

Why fun? Roll-N-Roaster is celebrating its 40th Anniversary. And in addition to the week-long giveaways, they’re throwing a party this weekend and offering some “buy one, get one” roast beef specials. Borough President Marty Markowitz himself is getting in on the action by proclaiming July 17 “Roll-N-Roaster Day.”

On July 17 and 18, the store will have face painting, magic, balloons, cotton candy, anniversary cake, cocktails and “roses for the ladies.”

Check the details and the flier after the jump:

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Courtesy of Village Voice

Mmm… doesn’t that roast beef look delicious? Well, it ain’t from Sheepshead Bay – home of the two best roast beef joints in the nation. It’s from a new Bay Ridge eatery called Ziggy’s. In terms of style, they seem to be more along the lines of Roll-N-Roaster‘s (2901 Emmons Avenue) not-so-fast fast food, as opposed to Brennan & Carr‘s (3432 Nostrand Avenue) more cultivated sit down joint. But they’re a bit jacked up on price compared to Roll-N-Roaster ($5.25/sandwich + $0.50 for cheese). They’ve got more variety in cheeses, and their specialty is cheez whiz. How does it compare, though? Well, Village Voice’s food critic Robert Sietsema says they beat Roll-N-Roaster in terms of quantity and moistness, but gives the nod to the Sheepshead Bay establishment’s larger menu. Have you tried Ziggy’s? How does it compare? Should Sheepshead fret?

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