Nicks Deli – Service And A Smile

Monday, September 23, 2013 - by Willie Mae
Nick's Deli at 5149 Hixson Pike
Nick's Deli at 5149 Hixson Pike

While I was driving around in Hixson this weekend I saw Nick’s Deli on Hixson Pike and I noticed that parking was overflowing. I knew it must be a good place! It looked like it had once been a little shop or drug store and it still had one aisle of shelving where they displayed their chips that you can choose with your sandwich.

I went up to the counter and asked the boy how long they had been there and he said he thought about 10 years. I spied a man going back and forth through the kitchen opening and up behind the counter making sure everything was running smoothly. I assumed that was ‘Nick’.

I looked a menu over and decided on the Twisted Rueben for $6.39. I had never tasted pastrami before. I like salami but I didn’t like corned beef, so I wasn’t sure what pastrami would taste more like, but was willing to give it a try. The boy behind the counter said, “Chips and a drink?” in an assuming tone so I automatically said yes, but I really wanted the artichoke salad instead of chips. Then he asked me if I would want a pickle. I asked if the sandwich with chips came with a pickle and he said, “Yes, but we don’t want to waste it and some people never eat the pickle.”

Well I know that I have been one of those people if the pickle looked flat, so before I made that commitment I asked, “Are your pickles flimsy?” He assured me they were crunchy, so I said I would like a pickle.

I picked out my chips and chose ‘Stacy’s pita simply naked’ chips. I always go for the interesting names. I sat down at a table and shortly, the owner Nick hollered out my number for me to get my plate. The Rueben sandwich was hot with melted Swiss and sauerkraut on pumpernickel bread. I also had never tried pumpernickel bread. While I jotted down my notes, I was afraid that my sandwich would get cold or that the kraut would make the bread soggy, but the sandwich was hot enough to wait and the pumpernickel bread was the perfect bread to hold the kraut. My sandwich was wonderful!

I tasted a bit of the meat first, to see if I like pastrami. At first I thought it was too red for me, but I ate another bite and decided I liked it. The flavor of the mustard, kraut and Swiss blended so well on the pumpernickel. I don’t know what the ‘twist’ was but I sure liked it.

I noticed that Nick would bob back and forth from the kitchen to welcome everyone who came into the deli. He called them by name. I could tell he was from the New York area, but he didn’t smile much - his mind was busy.

With trying new flavors and liking them, I wondered if I was becoming a ‘foodie’ like my granddaughter, but I think to be a foodie you have to know the lingo and I don’t. I just say whatever pops out of my mouth.

There were all sorts of people coming in, golfers, teenage girls, businessmen, housewives and even people my age! It seemed that everybody loved Nick’s. I kept observing this special little place as I ate my sandwich. I am glad I chose the naked chips because it let the flavor of the sandwich be the star.

The counter also had a display case of Boars Head deli meats that I guess they sold aside from sandwiches. I was getting full on just one half of the sandwich and I thought about the boy not wanting people to waste food. I couldn’t take the rest with me because I had somewhere to be afterward. I did my best not to waste my sandwich and, when the boy walked by my table to bring someone something, I let him see me eating my pickle (which was not flimsy or flat, I liked the pickles).

I attempted a few bites of the other half of the sandwich, but I just couldn’t eat it all. When I put my napkin on my plate I looked to see if I needed to take my plate somewhere or if they took care of that. Just then Nick looked at me and asked, “Did ya handle that alright?” I told him I did my best and that it was very good. He let out the most dazzling smile with his perfect teeth! That made my day. He needs to smile more often, he has a pretty smile.

I asked what I needed to do with my plate and he said to leave it and they would take care of it. When I watched him running things the whole time, I could tell he was from the generation that took care of the customer. What a nice man.

It always pleases me to give out a Willie Mae “whee-e-e doggie!” Nick’s Deli sure deserves one! If you haven’t tried this place, you need to …and tell them Willie Mae sent you.

Hours:

Monday-Friday

10 a.m.-7:30 p.m.

Saturday

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

The Twisted Rueben
The Twisted Rueben

Eat Your Vegetables, Please!

We have several Farmer’s Markets here along our stretch of the beach.  However sometimes on a Sunday when we don’t have a serious plan and it is too hot to hit the crowded beaches, we head out to Panama City Beach.  Our favorite green grocer is Carousel. It is right there on Front Beach Road across from the Gulf and is home to lots of local produce and fruit plus a gazillion ... (click for more)

Guthrie’s Brings New To-Go Location To Chattanooga

Chattanooga and surrounding areas will soon be able to enjoy Guthrie’s fresh, hot, fast, golden fried chicken fingers. Guthrie’s newest To - Go location is set to open  on  Tuesday, Aug. 16, and will be at 5203 Brainerd Road. This To -­ Go location will offer the complete Guthrie’s menu ... (click for more)

Family Forced From Home After Storm Blows Tree Down

As a severe thunderstorm blew through the Chattanooga area Sunday afternoon, high winds knocked down a large tree onto a house around  4 p.m.  at 1105 E. 13th Street. Captain David Thompson, Jr. said no one was injured, but the damage was severe enough that the family would have to stay elsewhere  tonight . Volunteers with the American Red Cross of Southeast ... (click for more)

Michael Wilson Back In Bradley County; Due In Court On Monday

Michael Wilson is back in Bradley County, and was escorted into the Correctional Facility around 8:15 p.m. Wilson’s first appearance in court will be on Monday, at 9 a.m. in the Bradley County General Sessions Courtroom at the Judicial Complex at 2290 Blythe Ave. Wilson was arrested last week, after e ndangered Bradley County child Skyla Wilson was found safe in Colorado ... (click for more)

Pedestrians Have The Right Of Way - And Response (3)

Often I visit Gold's Gym at Chestnut and 4th Street. I  park in the theater parking lot at Broad and 4th Street.  I depend on the walk signs to get me there safely.  Most days I almost get hit by someone turning left or right coming from the exit ramp off 27 or turning right on 4th street from Chestnut. This happened yesterday as I was almost mowed down by a garbage ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Girls - ‘I Can And I Will’

Every night after the Rodriguez girls went to sleep not that long ago in a grim, rat-infested basement apartment on Chicago’s South Side, their father – a boxing referee who came to America from Puerto Rico -- would kneel beside the girls’ bed and whisper in each child’s ear. Their parents made them sleep hot-dog style, tightly wrapped in the same sheet and pressed together to protect ... (click for more)