I’ve been a customer of the Krakus Polish Deli on Elder Ave in Phillipsburg, New Jersey for quite some time. I don’t make it over there a lot because mostly I cook at home. But every once in a while if I want authentic Polish fare, I know where to go.
My introduction to their menu came from a friend who lived here before I did and who picked up a sampler, little bit of everything for me to try during a visit to her home in Pohatcong.
That was more than 10 years ago and it’s safe to say that their food hasn’t changed one bit.
I really feel like more people could be aware of this place because they don’t advertise enough. So that’s why I decided to make this blog post. I have raved about their homemade pierogies and amazing soups to people I know.
I brought my dad there for lunch at their two-table setup that’s in a room off the side to their main dining area. He got the mushroom barley soup, and I got my favorite, Ukrainian borscht. I’m sure we ordered some pierogies and kielbasa because that’s what you do when you go to a Polish deli. My dad absolutely loved it.
Yesterday I went in there with my son. He’s a foodie also, so he was into it. I have to say though when you walk into a deli at 5:00 p.m. on a Tuesday and are told that they’re getting ready to close, that’s pretty discouraging.
The lady at the counter was nice. First she said they were not serving in the dining area but then she relented and said they could heat us up some food in the microwave. I asked her if she wanted to be in the blog and she said no. But she did start smiling a little bit as I was snapping pictures! 🤗
Then she persuaded the owner who was presumably hiding somewhere in the back, to fry up the pierogies for us in a pan.
So they did that for us. I kind of expected a lukewarm reception though. I mean these are Eastern Block people. 😉 Anyway I’m there for the food, I don’t need you to roll out a red carpet when I walk in the door.
Here’s my thought. People are hungry after they get off work. I know that the pandemic was tough on everyone but we all have smartphones and cars.
You can hang out at your food establishment and do whatever you need to from your phone, do your routine cleaning and stocking, spend those extra couple of hours open for customers wandering in hungry after work and school lets out.
And let people know you’re open, and what you have to offer.
The Krakus Polish deli has healing herbal teas. Who knew!?
If business is slow, don’t close early. Stay open during those prime dinner and lunch hours and take a moment to snap some pictures of that beautiful food you’re preparing. Put the pics up on Facebook and get a following and let people know what you have going on there. Take it from me, if I see pictures of yummy looking food I’m going to come in and buy it.
Honestly the Krakus Polish deli is one of the best kept secrets around Phillipsburg. Their homemade soups are so hearty and nutritious and wonderful.
How healthy does this borscht look? It’s got beets, parsnips, carrots, pork, beans and some other things I can’t even identify. Look at that color!
The pierogies are worlds apart from what you would get in the frozen section of the grocery store and they have a great variety. You can get potato pierogies, farmer cheese pierogies, potato and cheddar, spinach and mushroom, meat, cabbage, sauerkraut pierogies.
It’s a pierogi lovers’ paradise in there. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.
You’ll also find packaged foods from Poland. I got some good quality jarred sauerkraut, pickles, and marinated salads with carrots and cabbage and beets. These are delicious, nutritious prepared vegetables and you can take home a jar and use to make yourself a quick dinner one night.
They’ve got stuffed cabbage. Go right in the back to the refrigerator section and you’ve got ready to go meals all packaged up. Their soups are ready to take home. Just heat and eat!
Look at the cheerful red and white tiled wall behind the deli counter and you’ll see a nice selection of dried kielbasa dangling overhead. There’s fresh pork roast in the meat case and other types of sliced meats.
You can get jellied pork. Don’t know what that is? It’s just meat and carrots and onions cooked with broth like a soup. Warm it up and incorporate into your dinner tomorrow night!
Here’s how I mix and match home cooked foods from the Krakus Polish deli. For lunch I heated up a cabbage roll with a few scoops of the jelly pork. Once heated and sliced, it became soup. Delicious!
So that’s my review of the Krakus Polish deli. They’ve been open for years which I totally appreciate because there’s not a lot of variety of ethnic food in Warren County. I hope they continue to stay open. If you’re hankering for some good Polish food, stop on by.
Krakus Polish Deli
600 Elder Ave
Phillipsburg, NJ 0886