“We were wondering why there wasn’t more information about our new deli in the article,” says Jimmy Retzos,
owner and, as he also puts it, manager, dishwasher, sweeper and just
about every other position at Columbus. “He wrote more about the bakery
and its history.”
Anyone who has lived in Syracuse over
the past 100 years knows to roll down their car windows to catch a
whiff of two stimulatingly odoriferous North Side joints: the wafting
sauce slathered pork emanating from the Dinosaur Bar-B-Que and
the hot rising dough filling the air around the Columbus Bakery.
Retzos’ grandfather has been there since the early 1920s; his father
became part owner in 1950 before taking it over entirely in 1976;
Retzos has been there 35 years and owner for the last seven.
The big cheese: Columbus Bakery owner Jimmy Retzos shows off the new Columbus Meats and Cheeses deli. MICHAEL DAVIS PHOTO
Columbus’ new deli is located right
next door to the bakery at 504 Pearl St. “We’ve had a storage room
there as long I can remember,” says Retzos, who recalls that the space
once held a candy shop that closed in the 1960s. “We fixed it up and
decided to put the deli in. And the best part about it is it’s 10 feet
away, right on the other side of the wall.”
All of the meat they serve at the deli is Boar’s Head
Brand, cut to order, including sopresotta, ham, turkey, salami, roast
beef, prosciutto, capicola, pepperoni and more. Prices vary depending
on what you order and how much, obviously, but Retzos says most
everything runs between $6.50 and $8.50 per pound, although he notes
for roast beef and a couple of others, it’s closer to $10.
Six varieties of olives and a host of
freshly grated cheeses such as locatelli, mozzarella, asiago,
parmesan-reggiano and more are offered. Using all of the ingredients at
hand, you can also have them whip up a made-to-order sub or sandwich
with pre-purchased Columbus Bakery bread, for around $6. Milk, eggs,
butter, bottled drinks and a few other market items are also available.
Coupling the cheeses and sauce available at the deli
with the dough they sell at the bakery, “you can make yourself a pretty
good sized pizza for under $10,” according to Retzos. And if catering
is an option for any function you may be hosting, Columbus will make
deli trays for any size gathering.
“We’ve had a very positive response so
far,” he continues. “We have a strong customer base from our bakery
that now come to the deli just as much, and they say it’s just as good.
People are starting to talk it up and we’re starting to see some new
faces and the deli is building a strong following of its own already.
But as the bakery is 118 years old and the deli is only three weeks
old, we got a lot of catching up to do, slowly, but surely.”
Columbus Meats and Cheeses is open daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Call 422-2913 for more information.