Review: EJ’s Luncheonette, NYC

Kathy Leonardo
Published in
3 min readJan 2, 2019


Born and raised in the Big Apple, every time I return to the city I have a hankering for some good ole New York pastrami, and I know just where to go. EJ‘s luncheonette is a New York City institution.

Open Faced Hot Pastrami Reuben at EJ’s Luncheonette; photo by Kathy Leonardo; courtesy of ETG;

I arrived longing for a classic NY Reuben, and EJ’s did not disappoint. This open faced hot pastrami sandwich was superb…the warm pastrami just melted in my mouth as it mingled with the tartness of the sauerkraut and the sweetness of the Russian dressing. The melted Swiss embraced the entire dish…culminating in a perfect union of deliciousness.

Egg Burrito, EJ’s Luncheonette; photo by Kathy Leonardo; courtesy of ETG;

My dining companions also raved about their meals. I was told the breakfast burrito (scrambled eggs, whole wheat tortilla, cheddar, onions, peppers, and salsa) was amazing. I did sneak a bite of the EJ’s famous Chicken Salad, which was quite tasty. EJ’s Luncheonette does a brilliant job paying homage to my favorite classic dishes.

Chicken Salad Sandwich, EJ’s Luncheonette; photo by Kathy Leonardo; courtesy of ETG;

Founded twenty-six years ago, this well-known restaurant is frequented by loyal long time New York residents. “It’s like one big family here,” said Executive Chef Steven Tedesco. Brought on board over a year ago, Tedesco has introduced a fresh perspective to an already popular restaurant.

Known for its blue plate specials and consistently fresh flavors, Tedesco has added a wide range of additional specials such as Half Rack of BBQ Spare Ribs, Tuscan White Bean Soup, Pan Fried Parmesan Crusted Cod, Chicken Masala, Sole Francaise, Chicken Rollentini stuffed with Spinach and Feta, Shrimp Gianni over Fettuccini, Mussels Fra Diavolo, and Beef Stroganoff (made with Petit Filet). On Thursdays, there’s the Prime Rib Special and the Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner Special.

photo courtesy of EJ’s Luncheonette

Of course the classic dishes are also available. As always, on any given day one can enjoy breakfast all day long. At lunch, one can indulge in a spicy Baja Burger Deluxe, EJ’s Double Turkey Melt, Penne and Shrimp with Broccoli, etc. For dinner, try the Grilled Lamb Chops, Chicken Schnitzel, or the Bell and Evans All Natural Herb Roasted Half Chicken.

EJ’s is much more than a luncheonette, it offers a true taste of New York…be sure to stop in when you are in the area. EJ’s Luncheonette, 1271 3rd Avenue, Manhattan, New York 10021; (212) 472–0600;

Originally published at on January 2, 2019.



Kathy Leonardo

A freelance journalist for fifteen years, Kathy founded which spotlights all types of events, art, music, theatre, dining, travel, etc.