Eating my way through the alphabet: Dad’s Favorite Deli
Published 10:33 am Tuesday, February 28, 2023
By Eden Slone
I have recently discovered a private chef in New York City who creates video content on social media platforms like Instagram and Tiktok and goes by the name of @wishbonekitchen. Her videos are about the food she makes for her (presumably very wealthy) clients, the food she makes for herself and her life as a successful woman in New York City. Despite her lavish life and affairs, she is shockingly down-to-earth, funny, and relatable. She just posted a video of her making a plain turkey sandwich, no frills or fuss, just two pieces of white bread packed with sliced deli meat. She looks into the camera and proclaims, “No one eats sandwiches anymore! When did we stop making sandwiches? Everyone wants to know what to eat for lunch: eat a sandwich!” With the video as my inspiration, I headed to the beast of all sandwich makers in Lexington, Dad’s Favorite Deli.
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Dad’s Favorite Deli is tucked inside a strip mall on Lane Allen Road, along with a local jewelry store, professional shoe repair, and other businesses you don’t always see anymore at newer establishments. While the shopping center may look a little quieter from the outside, it is anything but sleepy on the inside. Dad’s is only open from 11-3, Monday through Friday, so rest assured, while the doors are open, people are eating. Workers on lunch break, young children on a family day out, first-timers or seasoned visitors, the line to order is full of a variety of people anxious to get their hands on their sandwich. You can dine inside the shopping center breezeway, as I did, or get a to-go order, which was also a popular option. The employees were amicable, and service was fast, even during a busy lunch hour.
The menu is centered around the main event, sandwiches, with eight signature sandwiches, including classics like grilled cheese or a BLT with pimento cheese. There are also daily specials like tacos on Tuesdays or Reubens on Thursdays, along with a changing list of daily sides. I visited on Fat Tuesday, so there were options like chicken etouffee and gumbo. I chose sandwich #6, the country ham and swiss melt on a honey wheat hoagie with a side of Mexican corn chowder. I knew I was in for something good when my food was brought to the table. The bread was warm, the country ham was piled high, and the chowder was topped with the perfect amount of sour cream, cheese, and my personal favorite, Fritos. I started with a bite of the sandwich. Let me say a ham and cheese melt may sound like it isn’t breaking the mold, but this sandwich broke the mold, threw it out the window, and then proceeded to create its own mold. The sandwich was topped with a tangy orange sauce that went well with the salty country ham. The bread tasted almost like the infamous brown bread at Outback was used for a sandwich.
Simply put, it was magnificent. I then went in for the soup, sweet, savory, crunchy from the fresh corn and Fritos, and a great side for the sandwich. Is there a better lunch combination than soup and sandwiches? After eating at Dad’s, I have decided this may be the only lunch combination.
The sandwich melt. As delicious as the soup was, it is easy to see why the sandwich is one of the eight staples. It proved that good food is simple food and simple food is good food. Good quality ingredients working together to give a well-known staple a newfound flavor in the absolute best way possible. I also heard the customers besides me raving about the beer cheese spread, which I will most certainly be going back to try.
If @wishbonekitchen asked me directly why people weren’t eating sandwiches anymore, I’d tell her it is because not everyone has been to Dad’s. If you go to one place, I recommend go to Dad’s. This is the kind of lunch you could fall in love with, eat every day, and never get tired of. Dad’s slogan is “Distinctively Different.” Dad’s Deli–is distinctively different indeed.
820 Lane Allen Rd, Lexington, Kentucky 40504
With a passion for food and the way it brings people together, Eden Slone is an intern reporter who has created the Eating My Way Through the Alphabet series as a way to highlight some of the best food in Nicholasville, Lexington, and beyond with a new restaurant in alphabetical order being shared each week. If you have a favorite restaurant you’d like to have featured, feel free to send suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.