Foodie Travels – Canter’s Deli, Los Angeles, CA


Canter’s Deli
419 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 651-2030


“Hey Hun <snap>…whatcha gonna have<snap>?”

We have magically left 2012 and been transported to the early 1960s and I couldn’t be happier.

Let me step back a bit and explain.

We were in Los Angeles for a DIS Backstage Magic Adventure with Adventures by Disney and we were headed for the LA Farmers Market at Third and Fairfax (one of my favorite places …anywhere).

We arrived a couple of days early and were enjoying touring the area when I saw a giant sign for Canter’s Deli. Now, there is nothing I like better than a good deli. Nothing. I pretty much like everything involved. We didn’t stop, but went on to the Farmer’s Market.

When deciding where to go for breakfast the next morning, I immediately told everyone I knew where we were going and to get in the car. I should explain that Canter’s Deli is in a very urban area and the neighborhood shows it’s age….but that’s a good thing.

Upon arriving at Canter’s, you are stepping back into the glory days of the Deli. At one time, these massive restaurants were plentiful. There was Wolfie’s in Miami, The Rascal House in North Miami, Ronnie’s in Orlando and many others…but they have disappeared.

Maybe dining styles have changed. Maybe people are eating healthier, Maybe they were just too big to manage. I don’t know the reasons, but a lot of them are gone. You can still find them. Katz’s Deli in NYC comes to mind…but there seem to be far fewer than there used to be (and none in Orlando)….which is too bad. The good news is that Canter’s still exists and you can go to see for yourself.

You walk into a massive restaurant and are greeted and shown to your table. Walking through the place, you get glimpses of that Do Wop / Space age 1950s – 1960s décor. The Sputnik light fixtures and huge vinyl booths are perfect examples and you understand that this is the real stuff. This is not someone trying to recreate the era. This is the era.

You walk past cases filled with fresh baked breads and pastries and others filled with meats and cheeses… all ready and available to be packaged up to take home with you.

We sit down and our waitress (the word Server doesn’t seem to fit the atmosphere) brings us plates of dill pickles and menus that are several pages long. After a couple of minutes with the gigantic menu……it happens. Our “right out of Central Casting” waitress says…

“Hey Hun <snap>…whatcha gonna have<snap>?”

Between the words, tone and gum snapping, I am in heaven.

I won’t list everything we ate and talk about what was good and what wasn’t. It was all good and was all made better by the atmosphere and authenticity. We were in a true Deli


Others might see Canter’s Deli for the quality of the food or the location or any number of factors that one might use in deciding whether this is the right fit or not.

I’d go back in a heartbeat because it took me to a time in my history that’s harder and harder to find. By the way…the food was good too.

I don’t know when I will be back in LA, but I hope and pray that Canter’s doesn’t disappear. It would be a true loss.

Kevin Klose

About Kevin Klose

Kevin lives in central Florida with his husband and two dogs. He has a life long love of Disney and travel and often gets to combine the two. Another passion is food, in all its many forms.....from fine dining to eating with a dish on his belly watching television. Good food doesn’t have to be fancy. It just has to be good!

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