In an age when everything must be done first, faster, immediately even, it’s so refreshing when a restaurant opens that has actually taken the time to do it all right. This means having a cohesive menu, an obvious niche, and ideally, fills a “hole” in the local cuisine that defines its new home. Add interior design that is clean and modern (a welcome departure from the majority in this town), a cool location, and young, hip owners that (bonus) know how to make really GOOD FOOD, and you have a clear recipe for success. Enter Deli Ohio, a trendy sandwich establishment in the heart of downtown Canton, a stone’s throw away from another favorite, Muggwigz. This place is way cool.
I originally caught wind of it via a Canton Food Tour, where our tour guide extraordinaire was singing their praises as we strolled up Walnut after leaving Elemental Arts, long before the doors of Deli Ohio officially opened. Now that they’ve been in business for some months, I’ve gotten back a few times to test the waters, and I can honestly and wholeheartedly confess, this place rocks.
Yes, they have a regular menu of sandwiches, in true deli fashion. However, the owner is a creative type, and very passionate about his food, and therefore surprises his customers with delightful “perks” to the regular menu, like this bruscetta number (with wonderfully sweet heirloom summer tomatoes, most likely a product of local Breezy Hill Farm)…..this was my first exposure to Deli Ohio this summer. [Side note: the classy plastic vessel pictured above was NOT supplied by the deli. No, that would be our addition to the party, since Deli Ohio is BYOB, or BYOW, as it were. Oh yessss.]
Pictured above is my go-to Deli Ohio creation…..the Ham Apple Brie. Totally whewed by the salty-sweet maple-glazed ham, crisp sour green apple, rich and creamy Brie, and the icing on the cake: peach preserves. All on Hazel Artisan bread, to round out the awesomeness. (Another tangent, this dish totally reminds me of a most delightful antipasti dish on Chef Josh Schory’s summer menu at Lucca….if you missed it, click here.
Here is the Cuban. Doesn’t that bread look legendary…..and what’s a Cuban without a hearty dose of Dijon mustard and pickle chips. Oh yeah, they’ve got it covered.
Now that’s a deli sandwich. This high-rise stack of corned beef would definitely have the Richard Otterman stamp of approval. If you’re into it, you can find more of their corned beef story revealed here.
And lest we forget, my finicky friend Jessica’s creation, coined the “Brie-L-T” by a few marketing geniuses at our table.
Since the owners are not in the baking biz, they have a small-but-effective variety of fresh pastries and other treats delivered daily from a local baker (whose name escapes me now).
So if you’re out biking the new route down Walnut, stopping by Muggs for a PPU, or shopping Elemental Arts for a totally unique custom dining table to impress your friends, make sure to eat at Deli Ohio. They are a downtown joint, and we all know too well this is not a precursor for restaurant longevity. Let’s keep this guy making sandwiches for as long as possible. Oh, and if rumors of a catering menu are true, this may give us yet another tasty way to support. Stay tuned for that.