Save the Deli, Berkeley Edition

Categories: Events
Harris Graber/Flickr
Does this fit in Michael Pollan's Food Rules?
Owning a deli in the Gourmet Ghetto can't be easy. Customers who 10 years ago prized your commitment to authenticity, your ingredients imported from the East Coast, and your reasonable prices are now coming back to you, waving their battered copies of The Omnivore's Dilemma and demanding you go all Alice.

Just a week after David Sax spoke at the San Francisco JCC about his book Save the Deli, Saul's Restaurant & Deli is taking action to save itself from a different sort of threat. In true Berkeley style, it's inviting the public to a "Referendum on the Jewish Deli." The goal, say the organizers, is to bring together both the traditionalists and the ecofoodies to discuss how Saul's can respond to changing environmental and ethical concerns about food while keeping prices low and flavors consistent.

They've recruited no less than Evan Kleiman to moderate (even saying the KCRW "Good Food" host's name makes us genuflect involuntarily) and Saul's regular customers Michael Pollan, Willow Rosenthal, and Gil Friend to participate on the panel. On the table are topics like price, the declining number of delis in America, and the scandalous fact that Saul's has stopped selling Dr. Brown's Cel-Ray Soda.

Even if we suspect the subtext of the event is "Look, locavores, even Michael Pollan eats our pastrami," we're sure it will be an interesting discussion.

Event details:
Referendum on the Deli Menu
Time: Tuesday, Feb. 9, 6:30 p.m. (snacks at 6)
Location: JCC of the East Bay, 1414 Walnut (at Rose), Berkeley, (510) 848-0237
Tickets: $9.99 in advance, $15 at the door; proceeds go to the Center for Ecoliteracy

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