Local Spotlight

Whining and Dining: A Baby, A Triple-Decker and Some Pickles at Kenny & Ziggy’s

Here's hoping my baby loves corned beef, turkey and Russian dressing as much as I do.
Here's hoping my baby loves corned beef, turkey and Russian dressing as much as I do. Photo by Brooke Viggiano
Life has changed for this food writer. As a brand-new mom, poppin’ bottles has taken on a slightly different meaning. But while I find myself seeking out diaper changing tables for the first time ever, I’m still on the hunt for all the awesome happy hours, exciting menus and H-town icons, both new and old. Only now, I’m bringing my baby, Quinn, along with me. This “Whining and Dining” series looks at dining out with a baby in the city (more specifically, In the Loop, because Quinn doesn’t like to travel too far from home just yet).

Kenny & Ziggy’s is basically the Olive Garden of Jewish delicatessens...but with much better food. On a Saturday morning, the Post Oak location was packed with families ready to nosh on its collection of sky-scraping deli sandwiches and bubbe-approved eats. And my family was no different. I showed up with my husband, my parents (who schlepped all the way from New Jersey) and Quinn in tow.

With the exception of the baby, we all grew up eating at some of New York’s finest delis, and we can confirm that Kenny & Ziggy’s is easily Houston’s best in show, a fact Quinn will soon realize once her teeth come in. For now, she’s a few months old and is still dining on her bottle from the comfort of a stroller. The staff seats us in the back of the Schmooze Room, where we can park her next to the table with ease (I also eyed booster seats and high chairs on the way in, making a note to my future self).

Soon after, a bowl of complimentary pickles (two kinds) and our order of Dr. Brown’s sodas were plopped down in front of us while we scanned the colossal menu. I advised my parents on some pro K&Z ordering techniques — you definitely split a sandwich, here — and everybody settled on their deli meats of choice: corned beef and turkey for my husband and I, and corned beef and pastrami for the 'rents. I made sure to order my triple decker, dubbed the “One in a Minyon,” with the bread griddled. This is usually a super good move, but on this particular occasion, it proved to add a little extra wait time to the order. No worries, Quinn was mesmerized by the ceiling fans and we had some matzo ball soup to get through (another pro tip: the soup is only offered by the bowl, but the kitchen will happily split in two for you upon request, and it’s definitely filling enough to share).

When our sandwich arrived (around ten or so minutes after my parents’ did), it came as gloriously stacked as I remembered; a mountain of house-cured corned beef and delicate roast turkey breast, carved thick and finished with Swiss, Russian dressing and coleslaw. It’s a dreamy combination, and the buttery griddled rye was worth the slight wait.

Both locations (Post Oak and Buffalo Speedway) offer a kids menu. I can’t wait to bring Quinn back and teach her the magic of a proper egg cream. One sweet day.

TL;DR: You’ll always find families at this New York-style Jewish delicatessen, and you’ll also find monster-sized triple-deckers alongside all-day breakfast, colossal desserts and Old World classics from goulash to blintzes.

Kid-Friendly Dining Essentials
Parking: Lot
Seating: High-chairs and booster seats available (at both locations)
Bathrooms: Changing tables in the handicap stalls (at both locations)
Kids menu: Yes, 12 and under
Reservations: Neither location takes reservations; there can be waits during peak times (weekday lunch and weekend breakfast and lunch)

Kenny & Ziggy's New York Delicatessen (Galleria), 2327 Post Oak, 713-871-8883
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Brooke Viggiano is a contributing writer who is always looking to share Houston's coolest and tastiest happenings with the Houston Press readers.
Contact: Brooke Viggiano