Home / Food / Eat/Drink / Koppa's Fulbeli Deli Has a Sandwich for Everyone

Koppa's Fulbeli Deli Has a Sandwich for Everyone

Mar. 14, 2017
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Photo Credit: Maggie Vaughn

Tucked away in an unassuming bodega on the corner of Farwell and Irving, Koppa’s Fulbeli Deli (1940 N. Farwell Ave.) features about three-dozen sandwiches, plus build-your-own options; there’s something for everyone here.

Before we get to the food, let’s talk atmosphere. The deli counter itself is (smartly, for a business) tucked in the back of the shop, so you’ve got to walk past the cold drink aisles and chips to get a sandwich. Or if you happen to walk an aisle too far, you’ll find yourself awash in a refrigerated beer selection that stretches deeply for a bodega. 

Once you head back to the deli counter, you’ll notice two things: a pleasingly shambled series of hanging signs offering different types of sandwiches divided by straightforward categories like “vegetarian,” “grilled,” “submarine” and so on. It’s a bit overwhelming, naturally. Choosing a sandwich at Koppa’s is sort of like playing Tetris: You have to figure out what grouping of ingredients will fit together best to satisfy your palate and your hunger.

Oh, and speaking of Tetris (I swear that wasn’t an intentional segue, but hey, it worked!), the second thing you’ll notice—likely after you order—is the fully functioning and very dope Atari cabinet that features 40 games for you to mess around on in the five minutes it takes for your sandwich to magically appear. The Football game is, um, complicated, but good old Pac-Man is there for all. (What better way to get hungry than to watch Pac-Man chomp on some dots?) It’s an awesome way to kill the time. Or you could peruse the handful of eclectic, thrift-store books stacked near the grandma’s-basement furniture that’s comfy to boot.

Back to the sandwiches—I ordered the Baron Rodgers ($6.49), in part for the name and in part for the ingredients. Featuring smoked turkey, bacon, Swiss, avocado, red onion, tomato, lettuce, mayo, beer honey mustard and horseradish on a baked roll, it was outstanding: The warm meat and roll had a nice contrast with the room-temperature toppings, and the sandwich kept unfolding. I’d take a bite and be pleasantly reminded there was avocado, or horseradish, etc. The ingredients are parsed out to where you never get solely one texture or flavor in each bite. I was told it’s one of their best-selling sandwiches, and after having one, I can see why.

My vegetarian wife got the Jezzeldorf Panini ($5.99), featuring goat cheese, roasted red peppers, tomato, red onion, garlic, black olives and fresh basil, all grilled together. It was tasty—a good mix of salty and sharp and fresh—although a bit messy.

If you choose to eat at Koppa’s—as opposed to taking a sandwich to go—the experience of eating there is really fun, watching patrons come in and out as you sit at one of four small tables by the entrance next to a long aluminum wall that’s been signed over and over by patrons. Eschewing the traditional “So-and-so was here,” many of them say they’ve been coming for years, and/or they’ll be back soon.  

Hours: Monday through Friday 7 a.m.-9 p.m., Saturday through Sunday 8 a.m.-9 p.m.

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