Paying Homage to This Imperiled Slice of Americana … No Pun Intended

Image via David Maialetti, Philadelphia Inquirer.

A tour of Delaware County’s neighborhood delis lets you experience a slice of Americana that is slowly dying, writes Maria Panaritis for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Delis often die when their founders do. With fast-growing Wawa and supermarkets “corporatizing” our cold-cut options, mom-and-pops are harder to keep around.

A recent Dietz and Watson delivery tour included Westbrook Market on Springfield Road in Clifton Heights. For 40 years, Joe Poiese, now 61, has sat in a metal folding chair by the butcher block at Westbrook Market on Springfield Road in Clifton Heights. He watches customers come in, sit down, and make themselves at home inside this market that’s been open for 78 years.

The meat case at Centrella’s Deli & Italian Market on Brookline Boulevard in Havertown is a cross-section of two generations of deli food. A.J. Loustau bought Centrella’s in 2010 after ditching a life as a college grad with a business degree and a cubicle job.

The motherlode, Farm Fresh Produce at Burmont and Garrett roads in Drexel Hill, opened as a produce place 35 years ago, but a deli was soon added.

Today, even with a Wawa directly across the street, it is ablaze with business.

Read more about Delco’s delis in the Philadelphia Inquirer here.

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