Déli Sokołów is a brand new Jewish-style deli that opened up this past April in St-Henri. Previously occupied by Restaurant John—a favourite since 1919—the owner Shayne Gryn tells us that when John’s closed, it left a serious void that he wanted to fill. And to fill that void, he decided to create a “neighbourhood hangout with affordable breakfast” that people could call home. Shayne chose a Jewish deli because “it’s food that a lot of people are familiar with, regardless of background; it’s very much a Montreal tradition,” and tradition certainly carries through the theme of Sokołów.
Shayne elaborates: “we really wanted to build an institution. We don’t want to follow any trends, or try to be the next big thing. We wanted to build something that will be a fixture in the neighbourhood, for the people in the neighbourhood.” And though it’s only been open for just under three months, they’re off to a great start. People regularly stop in to say hello and sit down to eat. The design and feel really lend themselves to an antique Jewish deli, from the bar counter and wallpaper to the music in the background. In sum, the place is already accomplishing what it set out to do, and that’s a huge deal for such a new restaurant.
As for the food, the menu is deliciously varied: they serve breakfast & brunch until 3PM every day, and then switch over to their lunch & dinner menu. They have a wide variety of Benedict eggs to choose from on the weekends, and the classics like bacon and eggs. For lunch and dinner, you can get some Montreal classics like smoked meat sandwiches and poutines, as well as faithfuls like burgers and fries.
Perhaps the most intriguing item on Sokołów’s menu is their Latke poutine, where traditional french fries are switched out for a Jewish favourite: the potato Latke (think of hash browns instead of fries). You no longer need to wait for Hanukkah to get your favourite holiday-themed snack, and it comes with a twist!
Don’t worry, they serve Matzoh ball soup all year round as well. The competition is pretty stiff when it comes to smoked meat in Montreal, but Sokołów holds it’s own with no problem; the food here is really good. You don’t need to pay much to leave feeling full either, but if you fancy a dessert, they serve up a great selection of ice cream, milkshakes, and coffee.
We could easily see ourselves going to Sokołów to grab breakfast and staying for lunch too. It’s a really cozy environment, and Shayne welcomes that, saying, “any time of the day, come grab a coffee, use the WiFi as long as you want, and play a game or two on the arcade.”