Empire State Deli (#273, 8/22/13) – 55
I made my first lunch sojourn to One Shell Square – the tallest building in Louisiana (51 stories, 697 feet; it was also the first Southern skyscraper to surpass 200 meters). It has a bunch of little lunch stops in the building, including Roly Poly, Subway and some independent places. My independent stop was the Empire State Deli, a taste of the Big Apple in the Big Easy.
This doesn’t look like much from outside the doors, but it was actually a pretty good place. I had a pulled pork sandwich which was good and the veggie burger received solid marks as well. They had a good variety of deli-style sandwiches; I may have to go back to try the reuben as I haven’t found many tasty reubens down here. One pet-peeve issue for me was they advertise a sandwich as coming dressed the way you like (by the way, in this area, “dressed” generally means lettuce, tomato, mayo, but could mean pickles, onions, etc. Somehow you’re just supposed to now what it means). However, lettuce was a 10 cent charge and tomato was 20 cents. Not really a big deal, but again, you’re charging for a slice of lettuce? Out of 50 points for food, I’ll give it a 28.
The atmosphere is pretty minimal. A bunch of basic chairs in a fluorescently-lit open area – typical office building lunch spot. I’m going with 15 out of 30 for atmosphere; average for the type of place it is.
Service was decent. You order at the counter, then wait for your number to be called and you go pick it up. The food came fairly fast, so no issues there. I’m giving a 12 out of 20 for service because of the speed of service. It’s a lunch stop, so it should be quick, but that’s not a given down here.
Final score = 55.