5 Points Deli, Melbourne

Author: Michael Harden
Photography: Sabi Studio

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country right now: 5 Points Deli, Melbourne.

After successfully channelling the American south at their Collingwood bar Le Bon Ton, brothers Will and Mick Balleau are now paying homage to the great Jewish delis of Manhattan that they visited as children. Their new Carlton joint, 5 Points Deli, has something of the Bon Ton style - dark wood, shiny tile, walls glimmering with pressed-copper panelling - but there's also an impressive authenticity to the sandwiches, bagels, salads and burgers. And it's not just because of the immense size of their Reuben and their smoked pastrami on rye (both packing about 450gm of meat). It's also because all the meat (including the excellent salmon served classically on a beautiful boiled bagel) is smoked in Le Bon Ton's pit-smokers, their pastrami goes through a three-week curing and brining process and their potato chips, pickles and sauerkraut are all made in-house. Then there's the Katz's-style presence of a daily (sweet) pie. It's casual and slightly chaotic, which feels about right. After 4pm, the deli morphs into a rather less kosher raw bar with oysters, fish, crab and clams piled into ice on the counter. It's the perfect place to chill before heading upstairs to the other arm of the new business, Longhorn Saloon, a Bourbon bar and steakhouse.

5 Points Deli, 118 Elgin St, Carlton, Vic, (03) 9348 4794

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