Fast, friendly and healthy. Keith’s Deli is the west end’s best-kept secret. Located at 645 Gardiners Road, it’s a great choice for take away or eat in when you desire an appetizing lunch.
People line up for lunch from the cafeteria-style deli for thick, tasty sandwiches, delicious soups and fresh, crunchy salads. Long before there was a donut shop on every corner, Keith’s Deli has served up healthy, quick options. Many choose so-called healthy options through a drive thru window, but as the customers at Keith’s confirm: nothing beats a freshly made sandwich from Keith’s counter.
My days are often full, juggling work and family life. If I forget to pack a lunch, my stomach begins to rumble and scream for food. Recently, I found myself in just this predicament, darting across the west end looking for a place that serves tasty, homemade food. Keith’s Deli jumped out for its very local look and feel. Sadly, I had forgotten Keith’s around the same time I started working downtown and discovered the Golden Rooster. My visits to the west end limited to a movie or brief shopping trip. As soon as I pulled up to the familiar deli, the mouth-watering egg salad sandwich came to mind and I kicked myself for not being back sooner.
The deli has a home-style feel to it with its plastic tables and chairs; newspaper and magazines are available for your reading pleasure. It’s clean, comfortable and offers quick, healthy food.
Not many places serve up traditional sandwiches any more. The good old-fashioned egg salad, ham and cheese, roast beef, smoked meat and chicken salad have largely been replaced with stuffed paninis and focaccia, or worse, pre-wrapped subs. I was thrilled to see Betty behind the counter, still slathering butter on bread before adding meat and toppings. She smiled that familiar smile she has shown countless visitors. While she doesn’t know me, I feel like I know her. That’s the thing about Keith’s Deli -you get the same service every time. There are no surprises.
I ordered the special: cream of broccoli soup and the egg salad sandwich on whole grain. The bread did not appear homemade, but it was fresh. I have a thing for egg salad on sandwich bread. More often than not, these tasty morsels are only found at a funeral or the dreaded baby shower. (Yes, I just said that baby showers are worse than funerals.) My sandwich was stacked high with fresh egg whipped together with the perfect balance of seasoning and fresh
spring onions. One bite sent it oozing out the sides, but I managed to eat every last morsel.
Keith’s offers a traditional deli menu, including a variety of salads, sandwiches and other hot foods such as, lasagna, mac and cheese and homemade soups. A catering service is also available. You can pre-order online at keithsdeli.ca or by calling 613-389-7015 for your next small or large event.
There were few changes at Keith’s since my last visit. They now have free wi-fi, something every business should make available to customers. The deli changed ownership five years ago. It is no longer owned by its namesake, Keith, but you will happily discover that with owner Jason Song (and of course, Betty), it still doesn’t miss a beat. Same menu, same great service. In fact, they ask their customers to stay the same too.
There is a sign at the counter which reads: “Please put your cellphone away. Paying attention to someone when they are talking to you? There is an app for that, it’s called respect.” I missed this place.
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