If you could grant Chow Down Grill's Josh Marcus three wishes, he would ask to run a Chinese restaurant, a sushi restaurant, and a Jewish delicatessen.
It seems as though Marcus's dreams will come true when his original Chow Down Grill in Surfside transitions into Josh's Deli & Appetizing. The interior won't change much (Marcus is installing some TV sets so diners can chew on the news while they nosh on their pastrami), but the concept is doing a complete 180-degree turn.
Josh's Deli & Appetizing will offer deli standards such as pastrami and corned beef -- only this time they'll be cured in-house by Marcus. Smoked sable, salmon pastrami, and pickled mackerel (all the New York delis have dibs on the best herring to pickle, according to Marcus) will all be on the menu, which features modern twists on old-time deli favorites.
Overstuffed sandwiches will range from traditional pastrami on rye and burgers to fresh takes on old favorites such as the Jewban (pastrami, pork, house-made pickles, mustard, and Swiss) and the Trickey Rickey, a sandwich made with homemade head cheese. Sandwich prices will range from $8 to 12, appetizing items $6 to $8, and nothing will cost over $14.
Josh's Deli & Appetizing will be open daily for breakfast, lunch, and
early dinner, with brunch served Saturday and Sunday. After hours,
Marcus plans to host pop-up restaurants each month, with Gastropod's chef Jeremiah Bullfrog taking over the kitchen for the first one.
"I'm looking to bring in a
blend of established chefs and up-and-coming chefs wanting to showcase
their talents. The popups are going to be true popups -- a few days,
maybe a week. To me, if a popup is doing business for six months, it's
a restaurant, not a popup," Marcus says.
Both Josh's Deli & Appetizing and the Jeremiah Bullfrog popup will open in April, right after Passover.
are some positive changes in the works for Chow Down Grill South Beach as
well. Joe Bacero will head the kitchen. Baceo's resumé includes
Doraku and Bond Street. Sushi items will be introduced, as well as an
extended menu of specialty cocktails, designed to be paired with Chow
Down's Asian flavors.
For now, Marcus will spend the majority of
his time at the Surfside location, still working on recipes and menu
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items. "I've spent the past three months of my life eating pastrami
sandwiches. I'm not complaining."
Here's a sneak peek at some of the menu items at Josh's Deli & Appetizing: