To native Akronites, Primo's Deli is one of those restaurants that have been around for a long time. In fact, I can't remember a time when Primo's Deli wasn't around. Primarily known for their killer sandwiches and awesome beer selection, the place still packs them in for lunch and dinner, even after several decades of being in operation. Knowing that it'd be silly of me to show up at noon on a Friday for lunch, I instead opted to wait until about 1:30 PM. It was still busy, but there were several tables open and I was able to seat myself fairly easily.
Primo's Deli was located at 1707 Vernon Odom Avenue, Akron, Ohio near Rolling Acres Mall and can be reached at 330-745-9056. As of this writing, there currently was no website associated with the restaurant.
As soon as I sat down and even before I placed my order, a basket of potato chips showed up at the table:
These were ... pretty much just potato chips. Right out of the bag. I'm hoping, gentle reader, that I wouldn't need to describe the flavor of these. By the way, they will refill your basket for free if you run out.
Everything at Primo's was a la carte. The quite large menu says that sandwiches come with potato chips, but in reality, the chips come out first regardless. So when you order a sandwich, just the sandwich comes out of the kitchen. I decided to look over their sides and see if anything struck my fancy. The menu indicated which sides were homemade; I decided to settle on the baked beans. While I ordered my sandwich and baked beans at the same time, the baked beans came out first:
These were good and not-so-good. The good was that the portion size was huge. The good was also that they used lots of crumbled bacon in their beans. The bad was that these beans were overcooked and somewhat dried out. The flavor was pretty good, but the texture was kind of mealy; most likely due to the fact that they were seriously lacking in moisture content. While the baked beans was one of a select few sides that were made from scratch at Primo's, I don't know that I would order this again, given the chance.
After looking over the extensive sandwich menu and asking my server about what they make fresh in-house, she mentioned that the corned beef would be a good choice. I returned to the menu and found the item she was describing. I decided at that moment that this would be the perfect sandwich for my lunch.
About ten minutes after my baked beans had arrived at the table, my sandwich arrived:
Served with small cups of yellow mustard and prepared horseradish, this was an excellent sandwich. The bread was nicely grilled, the corned beef was sliced thinly and wasn't too fatty and the flavor of the beef and spices really sang as I took my first bite. With the addition of some yellow mustard and horseradish, this sandwich only got better. Now you had the spice from the horseradish, the tang from the mustard, and all that loveliness from the corned beef.
Here was a shot of my sandwich from the side:
As you can see, you get a lot of meat on this sandwich. So much, in fact, that I could only finish half of my sandwich and decided to take the rest of it along with my baked beans home with me for a snack later on. I paid the check, went back outside into the sunny day, and got into my car to drive home, eagerly anticipating finishing up my leftovers later on.
If you want to ensure that you have a seat during your visit to Primo's, go early or go late. Lunchtime is particularly brutal during the week and you may find yourself standing for quite some time before a table opens up. Of course, you can always get your order to go to take back to the office or a nearby park if it is a nice day out. As you can imagine, I recommend you give Primo's Deli a try, although if dried-out baked beans aren't your thing, try a different side instead.