It’s Pastrami Week here at TMBBQ. I’ve been traveling across the state—and the country—for the last few months (okay, maybe years) looking for examples of pastrami excellence. Most have come in the form of beef, but mushrooms, salmon, and octopus have made appearances as well. This week we’ll celebrate them all.
Despite Texas’s long history with pastrami (it may have been birthed here before New York City), we haven’t been a great haven for delicatessens. Since it opened in 2000, Kenny & Ziggy’s, in Houston, has helped change our national reputation on the deli front, but most of the great pastramis in Texas are found at barbecue joints (it’s smoked after all), fancy restaurants, and even a pizza shop.
Tune in all week as we examine pastrami history, science, and the ways in which this humble cured meat has been modernized. On Friday, one pastrami will be heralded above them all. I’ve found plenty of favorites throughout the journey, but only one can be the best pastrami in the country.