I live in this place of infamy, and just for you my dear reader, I have taken a treacherous journey further into The Valley...in search of DANGER.
On recommendations from a number of sources, I traveled west to Northridge.
Ah, Northridge. Home of Cal State Northridge, The US Metric Association, and Brent's Delicatessen and Restaurant.
Brent's is an excellent deli tucked away in a strip mall, that if you're not careful, you'll definitely miss the first time you go looking for it.
For my first outing here, I decided to go with an old favorite of mine: The Corned Beef Reuben
One of the best things about the restaurant experience here is the free appetizers consisting of fresh pickles and Brent's famous rye bread.
The rye bread is double baked, and is an absolute delight. Warm and fluffy in the center, and crisp and crusty on the outside, it is the perfect prelude to what awaited me next.
The Reuben itself, for those that don't know, is actually pretty simple. Rye bread, corned beef, swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and a bit of Russian Dressing.
As you can see, like any great deli, Brent's does not skimp on the corned beef. And let me tell you, the meat in this sandwich could not be more delicious if it tried. It is very lean, has the perfect seasoned taste (not too weak, not too pungent), and just falls apart in your mouth when you bite into it.
Even a few hours afterwards ( I was not able to tackle the entire sandwich in one sitting), the fat on the meat hadn't congealed as happens with some deli's that don't take enough time and pride in what they put into their sandwiches. So for this, I applaud the fine people at Brent's.
The swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and Russian dressing are all layered on proportionally and blend well with the corned beef. The double baked rye bread adds a bit of crispness to the sandwich that is much appreciated in every bite.
For the side, I opted for the seasoned curly fries ( though i sampled the potato salad which is also a good selection) and sweet cole slaw, which really surprised me in being sweet but not overbearing.
Make sure you plan ahead for this trip. The wait lines can be pretty long if you go for dinner, or during the day on weekends. I lucked out and only waited about 15 minutes, but i'm told the waits can be up to 45-60 minutes.
It's absolutely worth it though.
**** - 4 stars (oh, back to the star system?)
Brent's Delicatessen and Restaurant
19565 Parthenia Street
Northridge, CA 91324