So it's not the Four Seasons. Nor even an Odeon, which more than two decades into its run has become a kind of La Coupole for the downtown Manhattan set. It's not even a Katz's, with its thin-sliced deli meats and goofy Greatest Generation charm. Those are all good places to eat. Junior's isn't really. Junior's is something else entirely, although something great: a window into the Brooklyn of memory and the Brooklyn of now, where there is no problem that cannot be solved by a dill pickle, a hot twin roll with soft butter, a freshener on your cup of coffee, a fat slice of cheesecake, a smile...Because there are truths in this world, and here is one of them: An open-faced white-meat turkey sandwich, smothered in gravy, extra cranberry sauce, with relatively indeterminate steamed vegetables on the side, can be a glorious meal, especially taken with friends as waiters gather round to sing.
And that's all anyone wants - to find the truth. Whether it's from the sugary high of a cupcake, or the sweet richness of ribs, or briny delight of oysters, a food truth means a lot. [There's also a great anecdote to start Sam Sifton's article, about a young man looking for his mother. Read it.]
Junior's is at 386 Flatbush Avenue Extension (at DeKalb), in Brooklyn.
rachelle went to Katz's.