New restaurants are popping up all over Statesboro, and this week for lunch, I ventured over to the newest deli in town, Groucho’s. Opened in late June, the deli boasts great variety featuring specialty and deli sandwiches, bacon, lettuce and tomato (BLT) clubs and chicken chili, even including a kid friendly menu and low-fat alternatives. Fully expecting to stand in line to place my order, I was pleasantly surprised by a chalkboard sign at the entrance that read, “Please seat yourself.” We visited mid-afternoon and the crowd was steady. The black-and-white checkered tile flooring is reminiscent of a 1950s sandwich shop, and based on the wall art, you know you’re dining in Eagle Nation. Georgia Southern flags and framed pictures of the legendary Erk Russell decorate the restaurant.
A good indicator of what the food will be like in any restaurant — in the South — is its sweet tea. There’s nothing worse than fermented or artificially sweetened tea made from a mix. When our drinks were delivered to the table, freshly made, sweetened just right and served with crushed ice, I knew our experience could only get better.
My predictions were correct! I ordered the Bacon & Turkey BLT with mustard on pumpernickel bread, served with a side of baked chips and a kosher dill pickle. You can choose from a wheat roll, rye or pumpernickel bread or white or wheat toast. A good-sized portion, lunch was delivered in a timely manner and presented in an old-fashioned red plastic sandwich basket filled with logo’d paper. It was everything a club sandwich should be — filling, colorful and triangle-shaped, secured with toothpicks.
Whipped up in-house daily, the sauces and salad dressings are made from scratch. Try the famous Formula 45, an herb blend of spicy Russian and Thousand Island dressing, or the Danish Bleu, a Scandinavian dressing with a sour cream base. The most popular menu items include two of Groucho’s specialties: the Apollo Dipper and the Small Taste of Paradise (STP) Dipper. Both meaty sandwiches complete with melted cheeses, they’re made to dunk in the accompanying sauces. In addition, the menu features 14 different salads, out-of-the-ordinary beverages including cream soda and root beer, and more-than-potato-chip side options including potato salad, cole slaw and extra bread. Bottled beers are also available.
Prices range from $2.99 for a small Green Combo Salad to $10.59 for the Deli Club for Two. All total, my tab was $12.49 and totally worth it.
Conveniently located on Brampton Avenue, Statesboro’s Groucho’s Deli is currently the only franchise in Georgia. Open seven days a week, you can visit Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dining alone? Take a seat at the bar top. With friends? Booths and tables fill the open floor plan.
There was just one improvement I suggested to the owner. He was wearing a University of South Carolina hat, but I told him we could work on that.
Rebekah Faulk is a local food writer and blogger at Some Kinda Good, a Southern, coastal food blog highlighting East coast restaurant reviews and Lowcountry-inspired recipes. Email her at SKGFoodBlog@gmail.com.