You gotta take a look at the north Jersey Sloppy Joe wars. The sloppy joe with the coleslaw and pastrami… My dad was nuts about those. i like the turkey version.
the NJ sloppy joe has no resemblance at all to the tomato/meat style. It is a regular deli sandwich with coleslaw on it. The North Jersey delis all lay claim to them. My take on them is fresh sliced roast turkey on rye with swiss, russian dressing, and lots of coleslaw. my o my
THE SKINNY ON THE JOE AS TOLD BY JAMES F:
You probably know the background of the NJ Sloppy Joe and how it differs from what the rest of the country calls the sandwich of the same name. The NJ version is not ground beef in a sauce on a bun. It’s a double decker on rye with a combination of deli meats, cole slaw, Russian dressing and, sometimes, cheese. It’s always cut into multiple sections, not just into 2 halves. Usually you see them on a big platter at parties, carved into squares about 3″ X 3″ X 3″ with a toothpick holding each section together.
The Millburn Deli makes a gourmet version of the sandwich. The 3 slices of rye are thinly sliced fresh to order, meats are of super high quality (fresh turkey, rare and lean roast beef), there is one slice of Swiss cheese, and the homemade slaw and Russian are kind of sweet and thick, gluing the sandwich together. The sandwich could be described as creamy. You order the sandwich by the (single) type of meat you want, for examples, a Turkey Joe or a Roast Beef Joe. The ham Joe, which I believe is the most popular version, is simply called the Sloppy Joe. One unique feature of the Millburn Deli Joe is that it is sliced into 3! sections – picture an oval rye slice divided this way with 2 opposing D shaped sections surrounding the center Wedge. Just as people have various ways they might approach eating an Oreo cookie, there are different schools of thought on whether to eat from L to R or R to L, start with the Wedge, or save the Wedge for last. (There is no toothpick, as the sandwich is only about 1.5 ” tall.) The sandwich has remained essentially the same since I first had one around 1970, even though the ownership of the deli has changed. They used to butter each slice of bread – now, that’s only done on request (by some old timers).
Here is their website, which doesn’t give too much info and provides no pictures.
You should order one (or some) and see what you think.
The MD SJ was recently featured in a NY Times Article:
I’ll try to remember to take a picture next time I eat one.
Millburn is an upscale suburban NJ town whose poshest area is called Short Hills.