Yes, we have some great delis here in Western New York, but if you’ve ever been downstate, you know that there’s something different about the way those places work down there.
Christine and Greg Gerard are looking to bring a bit of downstate deli magic to Williamsville starting this fall when they open Main Street Deli. The married couple moved from Long Island to Snyder 13 years ago and fell in love with the area. However, since moving here, they still felt they as though they were missing a big part of their downstate morning routine.
“After we came here from Long Island, we started looking for a good breakfast sandwich. That was our No.1 priority,” Christine Gerard told me just ahead of the deli’s opening. “There were breakfast sandwiches, but they were microwaved, like hockey pucks. In Long Island, you don’t get that: Everything is made on the grill. So we said, ‘One day we’re gonna upon a place that opens nice, hot breakfast sandwiches.’
“And 13 years later…!” she said with a laugh.
In addition to providing a good quick breakfast, Main Street Deli is also focusing on a variety of lunch options, with the opening day menu featuring 26 different sandwiches, wraps, paninis, and heroes. Christine said she really had to pare down the lineup to avoid mission creep.
“My manager jokes with me and says I’m trying to make everybody happy,” she chuckled, “and I’m like, ‘Yeah I am! Why not?!”
Some sandwich highlights include a Cobb salad wrap ($8), with avocado, crumbled blue cheese, bacon, tomato, hard-boiled egg, and avocado ranch dressing; a grilled cheese panini ($8) with peppadew cheddar, muenster and swiss cheese; and a ham and cheese sandwich ($9) with brown sugar bacon and roasted garlic mayo.
Greg Gerard brings about a decade of deli experience to the menu, so people looking to give the place a shot should know they are in good hands. Christine said people should also expect the kind of eager and efficient service you might expect from a Long Island deli.
“I really think it’s all about food and service,” she said. “People want to be greeted when they come in, people want it quick and they just want good food. As long as we show love through the food, we can’t fail.”
She added that all of her and her husband’s time spent living and raising two children in Western New York have giving them a wealth of knowledge about what people want ‘round these here parts.
“I think I know what the community wants now. If we did it 13 years ago, I wouldn’t have known!” she admitted. “So, I think things happen for a reason and that’s why it took us 13 years, cause now we have the tools to be successful.
“There are some things that are better here and there are some things that are better there. We’re trying to find a balance of both and bring a little bit of downstate to Williamsville.”
Main Street Deli
5546 Main Street, Williamsville NY 14221
Hours Monday to Friday 7 a.m. – 4 p.m. Saturdays 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Sundays closed