A Sandwich A Day: Classic Reuben at Dillman's

A Sandwich a Day

Reviews of Chicago sandwiches.


[Photograph: Tessa McLean]

When you proclaim to be a play on a Jewish deli (the deli part of the name has since been removed), everyone expects great sandwiches. Which is exactly what I got with the Classic Reuben at Dillman's ($10.95). A heaping portion of incredibly thin shaved corned beef is the star of this sandwich, piled high on housemade rye bread. It's salty, fatty, and packed with flavor, making you scoop up every lost piece that's fallen from your sandwich. It's topped with a thin layer of mild, melted swiss and a generous helping of tangy sauerkraut. The sour, vinegar-y flavor provides much-needed acid and even tastes pretty darn good on its own. I also could have simply ate the spread of Russian dressing on rye bread by itself—it's so bold and pungent it certainly doesn't get lost among the other components. The sandwich is well balanced, and, for lack of a better description, is exactly what a reuben sandwich should be. You may not even touch the vibrant mustard it's served with for an extra kick, but you should.

It's a little on the greasy side due to the over-buttered bread, but if that's the only flaw in this reuben I'm willing to overlook it. It's a pricey reuben, especially when you get nothing on the side, but this is when you remember you're not actually in a Jewish deli, but a Brendan Sodikoff restaurant. And you're sipping an Old Fashioned with your reuben. And then you order some fries and get over it.