Saturday, April 20, 2024

Strandworthy: Beyer Deli, Voted #4 on Yelp’s Top 100 Places to Eat in America

The 4th most popular place to eat in America is just 20 minutes away; how do I miss these things?  Beyer Deli, just south of Imperial Beach in Otay Mesa, has been in business for twenty-two years. They were voted one of Yelp’s Top 100 places to eat in America three times since the list started ten years ago. In 2015 Beyers ranked 79th; in 2018, 59th, and this year, number 4 in the country. 

Beyer Deli
Beyer Deli, voted #4 on Yelp’s Top 100 places to eat in America 2023.

Yelp has too many critics and needs more cheerleaders. But these lists mean something. Anytime I see a food truck or a family deli get this kind of attention, I am more than a little curious.  

I recently wrote about two other Yelp winners from 2022: Shawarma Guys, voted the #1 place to eat in America, and Ed Fernandez, voted the best taqueria in America. 

I stand behind these places wholeheartedly, and they are on a regular rotation for me. This number 4 rating was worth checking out. We have some pretty good sandwiches on the island, but aren’t you curious? 

I tried to visit Beyer Deli this past weekend only to find out they were closed. While my girlfriend was surprised, I was elated. A famous deli, only open Monday through Friday, 9-3; as a chef, those hours make me very happy. This family might have a life outside of food service. 

Beyer Deli is a family run operation and it shows.

I recently made it down to Beyer, and it was just a 20-minute ride down the 5; on the way home, I chose the Strand. If you are running errands in Imperial Beach, it is just an eight-minute drive away. 

Beyer Deli sits in the Three Flags Business Park on Beyer Blvd. This is a no-frills location. The menu is extensive, and the people that work there are incredibly friendly. I noticed that I was one of the only first-timers. Beyer is family-run, and it shows. They are an integral part of their community.

Beyer Deli is tucked into a business park, you have to know it is there. It has been serving their community for 22 years.

It was raining the day I went, so I asked them for their most popular hot sandwich, which I immediately ate. I then ordered an Italian Sub to go. 

The charming lady behind the counter suggested the New Yorker, which features grilled pastrami and corned beef topped with melted Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, mayo, and mustard, served on a torta roll.  

This sandwich felt great in my hand, the torta roll was perfect, and it had just the right amount of bread. The roll tasted locally made. When I asked, the response was affirmative; they told me they receive their bread daily. Bread is an integral part of any sandwich, and for so many places, it’s an afterthought. The pastrami and corned beef portions were generous, and I loved the crisp edges of the meats from being grilled. 

The New Yorker, at Beyer Deli. The torta rolls are delivered fresh daily.

The Italian Submarine tasted delicious. I didn’t realize it came with mustard, mayo and American cheese, three things I usually don’t like on an Italian. The French roll was fresh and portioned correctly for the sandwich. The meats were generous, and the Italian dressing was tangy, an excellent accompaniment to the lettuce, shaved red onions, and tomato. I will order this sandwich again, minus the American cheese and condiments, and get more tangy dressing. 

The Italian Submarine sandwich, the tangy dressing makes this sandwich pop.

I loved this experience; it was a great rainy day activity. It seems excessive to make a 40-minute round trip just for a sandwich, no matter how good it is. I will have to find excuses to get down to Imperial Beach. I may become a member of the Wash Club at Soapy Joe’s; that way, my stomach, and car will be happy. If my vehicle looks clean, you can bet I went to Beyer Deli.

Beyer Deli is located at 3065 Beyer Blvd #A105, San Diego


Clyde Van Arsdall
Clyde Van Arsdall
Clyde is a trained chef that has worked in hospitality for nearly 40 years. In addition to cooking, he is a freelance food writer and storyteller. Currently he works for CH Projects managing the pool and Beginner's Diner at the Lafayette Hotel. Clyde is a third-generation Coronado local, CHS graduate, and father of three. He also owns and operates Olive Avenue Supper Club, a boutique catering company specializing in culinary experiences. You can follow his culinary journey on Instagram @oliveavenuesuppper and read all his stories at www.oliveavenuesupper.comHave a story for The Coronado Times to cover? Send news tips or story ideas to: [email protected]

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