Katz's Delicatessen, also known as simply Katz's of New York City, is a kosher-style (not Kosher according to Jewish Halacha) delicatessen restaurant located at 205 E. Houston Street, on the south-west corner of Houston and Ludlow Streets, in Manhattan.
Since its founding in 1888, it has become popular among locals and tourists alike for its pastrami sandwiches and hot dogs, both of which are widely considered among New York's best. Each week, Katz's serves 5,000 pounds of corned beef, 2,000 pounds of salami and 12,000 hot dogs.
During World War II, Katz's encouraged parents to "send a salami to your boy in the army" which became one of the deli's famous catch phrases, along with "Katz's, that's all!" which is still painted on the side of the building. The former phrase is referenced in the Tom Lehrer song "So Long Mom (A Song for World War III)", with the lyric "Remember Mommy, I'm off to get a commie, so send me a salami, and try to smile somehow". Katz is also well known for its photos of famous people eating in Katz's placed along its wall.
Katz's continues its "Send a salami to your boy in the army" to this day. The deli has arranged special international shipping only for U.S. military addresses and has been a source of gift packages to the troops stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq.
As each customer enters Katz's they are handed a printed, numbered ticket by the door attendant. As they receive their food from various stations/areas throughout the deli (separate for sandwiches/hot dogs/bottled drinks/fountain drinks etc/ a running total of the bill before tax is computed by the employees. If several people's orders are combined on a single ticket, the blank ones are collected by the cashier. Relatively recently (within the last 10 years) Katz's has instituted a "lost ticket fee" If a ticket is lost by a customer, an additional $50 surcharge is added to what is often (with sandwiches costing between $15-$17) a rather large bill. The purpose of the fee, as stated by the management is to encourage patrons to go back and find the lost ticket in the hopes of preventing theft (substituting a smaller ticket for a larger one).
Katz's was the site of Meg Ryan's and Estelle Reiner's famous "I'll have what she's having" fake orgasm scene in the 1989 romantic comedy When Harry Met Sally...; the table at which she and Billy Crystal sat, is marked with a sign that says "Where Harry met Sally...hope you have what she had!". It was also the site of Johnny Depp's character meeting with an FBI contact in Donnie Brasco. Katz's Deli is also the site for a scene in Across the Universe in which one of the main characters reveals he has been drafted into the Vietnam War. Katz's also appears in the movie Enchanted with Patrick Dempsey and Amy Adams.
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