Newbie With A Question

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Joined Jun 14, 2018
I grew up on Staten Island, New York and now live in the Portland, Oregon Area. I loved the Italian deli sandwiches so much and miss them to the point I'd like to buy a commercial meat slicer to replicate it at home.

I am having trouble comparing specs of meat slicers for cooked meat and cheeses. Nearly every meat slicer spec is based on semi-frozen (2-3 hours in freezer) meat which isn't what I am trying to buy a meat slicer for. Cheese is also troubling. I am having a hard time understanding how sub $100 from less than Chef's Choice 615 all the way down to sub $50 meat slicers have no problem with at least fully refrigerated cheese yet $500 "light duty" commercial meat slicers can't cut it (no pun intended) forcing me to buy a "medium duty" commercial meat slicer for 30 minutes a day which is more than enough for me.

I'll spend more than $500 eventually if I have to just so I can have meat and maybe cheese sliced less than paper thin or what they call in NYC delis "shaved" at home but would rather not for such a simple function in a small household.

Any suggestions? The reviews for Chef's Choice 615 say it can't slice paper thin so that won't work for me and many far more expensive meat slicers have trouble as well that I'd rather not buy blind.

Thank you for any replies verifying NYC deli, shaved thinness, cooked, meat slicing capable meat slicers. verifying with cheese is also appreciated.
 
452
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Joined Oct 1, 2006
Hi Polar Girl!

Welcome to CT!

Easiest solution would be to just ask a deli, that has already spent big bucks on a professional slicer, to shave the products you seek. I would have thought that finding the right brand of meat or the right bread would be a more difficult challenge to the sandwich of your dreams!

Shaving foods on a slicer has to do with technique as much as a having a very sharp blade. Could be tough to find the specs on this aspect though. If you slice very slowly with very little, but uniform pressure you can have very good results in shaving foods, even on a cheaper slicer.

If you haven't worked with a meat slicer before, be very conscious of safety please.

You might want to post your question in the food and cooking section or the equipment review section to get more replies.

Good luck!
 
9
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Joined Jun 14, 2018
Hi Polar Girl!

Welcome to CT!

Easiest solution would be to just ask a deli, that has already spent big bucks on a professional slicer, to shave the products you seek. I would have thought that finding the right brand of meat or the right bread would be a more difficult challenge to the sandwich of your dreams!

Shaving foods on a slicer has to do with technique as much as a having a very sharp blade. Could be tough to find the specs on this aspect though. If you slice very slowly with very little, but uniform pressure you can have very good results in shaving foods, even on a cheaper slicer.

If you haven't worked with a meat slicer before, be very conscious of safety please.

You might want to post your question in the food and cooking section or the equipment review section to get more replies.

Good luck!
Like I stated in the original post, I live on the opposite coast now and have for quite some time so not so easy to call random delis in NYC hoping that they answer my questions.

Thank you for describing shaving as a technique rather than purely a size. I learned something.

I suppose with a fully automatic meat slicer, pressure would not be an issue but the $4,000 price tag would be.

Not looking to have to spend $529 on a KWS 12 inch 420 Watt slicer. Maybe a 10 inch $299 Beswood or $315 Adcraft might do. If a reviewer says she can't get paper thin slices from a Chef's Choice 615, I'll take her word for it. Bummer since that would have otherwise been the perfect slicer for home use.

I guess I'll repost this thread in eq
 
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Joined Jun 14, 2018
I guess I'll post repost this question in equipment review. Thanks for the advice. I was going to originally post there but the review name deterred me from doing so.

Sorry I got my first reply cut-off and could not delete it.
 
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Joined Oct 1, 2006
Hi again PG,

Asking a deli to shave meats and cheeses was meant to apply to the Portland Deli community only. I'm sorry I confused you by adding "that has already spent big bucks on a professional slicer".

Here is the sentence without the expensive slicer reference-

"Easiest solution would be to just ask a deli to shave the products you seek." I know Portland has Italian Delis... (Piazza Italia, Bacchi's deli, Micucci Grocery)

I am missing a key point. You listed your experience as "none" so I assumed you are getting a slicer for your home and not to open your own Deli. Or are you opening a Deli?

Based on your original post, evidently you can get all the exact products you want for the Italian deli sandwich you miss so much, in Portland, but no one can slice them thin enough to suit you and you feel compelled to buy your own mechanical slicing machine.

My comment about having a more difficult time finding the brand name meats and bread was a nod to the regional products available in NY. I'm from Wisconsin and I know that in the other 49 states I won't be able to get some of my local favorites because they don't distribute outside the state.

As a chef I'm just puzzled that you can get the meats, cheeses, and that perfect Italian roll in Portland but, not one Deli is willing to slice things thin enough? I just don't get it. Sorry...

Good luck
 
9
1
Joined Jun 14, 2018
Hi again PG,

Asking a deli to shave meats and cheeses was meant to apply to the Portland Deli community only. I'm sorry I confused you by adding "that has already spent big bucks on a professional slicer".

Here is the sentence without the expensive slicer reference-

"Easiest solution would be to just ask a deli to shave the products you seek." I know Portland has Italian Delis... (Piazza Italia, Bacchi's deli, Micucci Grocery)

I am missing a key point. You listed your experience as "none" so I assumed you are getting a slicer for your home and not to open your own Deli. Or are you opening a Deli?

Based on your original post, evidently you can get all the exact products you want for the Italian deli sandwich you miss so much, in Portland, but no one can slice them thin enough to suit you and you feel compelled to buy your own mechanical slicing machine.

My comment about having a more difficult time finding the brand name meats and bread was a nod to the regional products available in NY. I'm from Wisconsin and I know that in the other 49 states I won't be able to get some of my local favorites because they don't distribute outside the state.

As a chef I'm just puzzled that you can get the meats, cheeses, and that perfect Italian roll in Portland but, not one Deli is willing to slice things thin enough? I just don't get it. Sorry...

Good luck
I apologize for the poor communication.

I did not yet spend on an expensive slicer but will have to for warranty reasons. Most commercial like slicers are either generic Chinese made slicers written in Chinglish and offer no warranty like the Superdeal
or void warranties if used for non-commercial use like Adcraft
https://www.admiralcraft.com/meat-slicer-10-8243-1-4-hp.html
The only commercial grade slicers that offer one year warranties for home use are Beswood and Kitchenware Station. Beswood is in Australia and I recently emailed them about USA warranties so not sure about that yet. KWS also offers many spare parts as well unlike Beswood that only offers blades so I guess the KWS 10 inch 320 watt is the choice unless I need to upgrade to the 12 inch 420 watt just to shave cheese.

I'm actually in Vancouver, WA on the other side of the Columbia River. Not many Italian delis here. Portland does have some but most are hipster artisinal rather than 1980s Staten Island like Italian delis but I'm sure they'd be familiar with the equipment if I am in a neighborhood with one.

Yes, you assumed correctly. This post is strictly for personal home use. My sister is a chef though but doesn't live anywhere near me and haven't spoke to her in over a decade.

FWIW, I used to live in Milwaukee, WI near North Prospect and Brady right on Lake Michigan back in the late 1990s if you are familiar with the Milwaukee East Side neighborhood.The delis seemed more German/Polish like but real interesting food there and authentic ethnic cuisine. I never tried bratwurst until I lived there.

I am particular yet on what specific meats I wish to buy yet. I am just trying to figure out the equipment issue first and not make a costly mistake doing so.
 
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Joined Feb 24, 2015
Hi again PG,

Asking a deli to shave meats and cheeses was meant to apply to the Portland Deli community only. I'm sorry I confused you by adding "that has already spent big bucks on a professional slicer".

Here is the sentence without the expensive slicer reference-

"Easiest solution would be to just ask a deli to shave the products you seek." I know Portland has Italian Delis... (Piazza Italia, Bacchi's deli, Micucci Grocery)

I am missing a key point. You listed your experience as "none" so I assumed you are getting a slicer for your home and not to open your own Deli. Or are you opening a Deli?

Based on your original post, evidently you can get all the exact products you want for the Italian deli sandwich you miss so much, in Portland, but no one can slice them thin enough to suit you and you feel compelled to buy your own mechanical slicing machine.

My comment about having a more difficult time finding the brand name meats and bread was a nod to the regional products available in NY. I'm from Wisconsin and I know that in the other 49 states I won't be able to get some of my local favorites because they don't distribute outside the state.

As a chef I'm just puzzled that you can get the meats, cheeses, and that perfect Italian roll in Portland but, not one Deli is willing to slice things thin enough? I just don't get it. Sorry...

Good luck

Not sure the OP is opening a deli - then again - would never actually consider buying a meat slicer for home use unless I was trying to feed my son's soccer team every day of the week....

I fully agree with the above - easiest would be to talk to some deli's in your area about getting pre-sliced meats / cheeses from them.
If your consumption is high enough (volume) they most likely will make you a different price (cheaper).

Buying and thus operating a meat slicer with no prior training - beware. Quiet a lot of people have lost fingers or parts of fingers with those machines.

One other question from my side - should you go ahead and buy the meat slicer - will you then also buy meat and cheese in wholesale?
Because otherwise I am failing to see the cost advantage at this stage...just curious mind you
 
9
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Joined Jun 14, 2018
Not sure the OP is opening a deli - then again - would never actually consider buying a meat slicer for home use unless I was trying to feed my son's soccer team every day of the week....

I fully agree with the above - easiest would be to talk to some deli's in your area about getting pre-sliced meats / cheeses from them.
If your consumption is high enough (volume) they most likely will make you a different price (cheaper).

Buying and thus operating a meat slicer with no prior training - beware. Quiet a lot of people have lost fingers or parts of fingers with those machines.

One other question from my side - should you go ahead and buy the meat slicer - will you then also buy meat and cheese in wholesale?
Because otherwise I am failing to see the cost advantage at this stage...just curious mind you
Then what should I buy if I am seeking shaved thin deli style meat and maybe cheese for home? Are there safer and cheaper alternatives to electric meat slicers that will do it that thin?

Deli meat per pound is vastly more expensive than uncooked meat so even an expensive slicer eventually more than pays for itself especially with a husband who works long hours and would like to take such sandwiches to work each day.
 
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Joined Oct 1, 2006
Polar Girl,

I'm glad that you have the resources to get a high grade slicer for 2 sandwiches a day.

Consider contacting restaurant supply houses and inquire about used commercial slicers. Get the best you can afford. Make sure to inspect the blade for any chips or cracks and ask about sharpening services if the slicer doesn't have the sharpening attachment. Also make sure to check the deck for any warping.

Note- Unplug and carefully clean immediately after use. This allows cleaning with gentle pressure as opposed to having to exert force to remove dried bits that can adhere with time. The harder you press the greater the chance of injury! Don't ever lose respect for that blade!

I would still use a cheese wire for cheeses prone to crumbling. An eight year Cheddar doesn't always shave well on slicers. This just takes a little practice.

Good luck!
 
813
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Joined May 25, 2015
9
1
Joined Jun 14, 2018
Polar Girl,

I'm glad that you have the resources to get a high grade slicer for 2 sandwiches a day.

Consider contacting restaurant supply houses and inquire about used commercial slicers. Get the best you can afford. Make sure to inspect the blade for any chips or cracks and ask about sharpening services if the slicer doesn't have the sharpening attachment. Also make sure to check the deck for any warping.

Note- Unplug and carefully clean immediately after use. This allows cleaning with gentle pressure as opposed to having to exert force to remove dried bits that can adhere with time. The harder you press the greater the chance of injury! Don't ever lose respect for that blade!

I would still use a cheese wire for cheeses prone to crumbling. An eight year Cheddar doesn't always shave well on slicers. This just takes a little practice.

Good luck!


You might want to look here https://www.webstaurantstore.com/14199/meat-slicers.html
I'm in NY and most delis use either Globe or Hobart in the $3,000 price range. Of the slicers on that page that give the minimum thickness they will do it looks like 1/16" is it which is hardly thin sliced. Others just say that they will do thin slices.
Then there is this thing: https://www.webstaurantstore.com/berkel-330m-std-13-prosciutto-meat-slicer/165330M.html

Even a pound a day of meat is the difference between $5 and $15 or $10 a day. That easily pays for itself in less than two months.

Warranties have already decided the issue for me I think. Didn't get just how bad they were until after I created this thread.

Webstraurant is selling Avantco slicers which are the only commercial grade slicers that make the cost justifiable for home use but Avantco — like every other commercial meat slicer manufacturer on that site — voids the warranty if not used for commercial purposes. I found that out months ago.

Beswood and KWS are the only commercial grade slicers with a warranty for home use. Both a more than shaving capable meat slicers according to reviews on Amazon and their their company sites but the KWS with a teflon coated blade and a stronger motor easily beats out the Beswood that sells for $80 less and even the stainless steel KWS blade for cheese that sells for $10 less.

10 inch blade with a 320 watt motor should be enough. I don't think I'll need a 12 inch 420 upgrade for cheese. I guess I'll be seeking the following device. let me know what you guys think.

MS-10-T-front-1024x1024.jpg

https://www.kitchenwarestation.com/product/ms-10-meat-slicer-blade-teflon/

This one costs $379 and free shipping. That seems like a reasonable expenditure for home use if it lasts a few years. The 12 inch 420 watt motor upgrade is probably unneeded even for cheese so no need to spend $150 more for that.

Oh, I'll definitely respect that blade enough to buy level 5 protection gloves. Only about $11 on Amazon so very well worth it.

Thanks for the advice on cheese. I'll probably will just be slicing mostly supermarket cheese blocks into paper thin or shaved slices. Still might be issues with that even with a teflon coated blade depending on the cheese.

Thank you again for all your help.
 
813
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Joined May 25, 2015
Funny how that looks just like the Avantco SL310 for $100 less.
Warranties have already decided the issue for me I think. Didn't get just how bad they were until after I created this thread.
You worry too much, get creative. Create an account at Web Restaurant Supply for and have it shipped to Polar Girl Catering. Not like they are going to send a service person to service the thing if you have a problem.

Even a pound a day of meat is the difference between $5 and $15 or $10 a day. That easily pays for itself in less than two months.

Don't know about you but I would get sick of sandwiches after about two straight weeks. Also, how long do you plan to keep your cold cuts? After three days in the frig roast beef gets thrown out here.
 
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Joined Jun 14, 2018
Funny how that looks just like the Avantco SL310 for $100 less.

You worry too much, get creative. Create an account at Web Restaurant Supply for and have it shipped to Polar Girl Catering. Not like they are going to send a service person to service the thing if you have a problem.



Don't know about you but I would get sick of sandwiches after about two straight weeks. Also, how long do you plan to keep your cold cuts? After three days in the frig roast beef gets thrown out here.
Funny how that looks just like the Avantco SL310 for $100 less.

You worry too much, get creative. Create an account at Web Restaurant Supply for and have it shipped to Polar Girl Catering. Not like they are going to send a service person to service the thing if you have a problem.



Don't know about you but I would get sick of sandwiches after about two straight weeks. Also, how long do you plan to keep your cold cuts? After three days in the frig roast beef gets thrown out here.
Funny how that looks just like the Avantco SL310 for $100 less.

You worry too much, get creative. Create an account at Web Restaurant Supply for and have it shipped to Polar Girl Catering. Not like they are going to send a service person to service the thing if you have a problem.



Don't know about you but I would get sick of sandwiches after about two straight weeks. Also, how long do you plan to keep your cold cuts? After three days in the frig roast beef gets thrown out here.
It sure does look like the non-Teflon version of the KWS 320 which is still $369.

If you really don't think I'll have an issue with warranties, then I'll definitely go with that. Hell, I might be able to afford upgrading to the SL312 but probably no reason for that. Just makes home slicing lifer harder and more expensive.

I might have used a bad example of extreme sandwich eating time frame but might not be too far off with my husband who can't just order out or find a place to eat easily on a daily basis so at least several sandwiches a week for him. Over the course of a few years, the price difference in home cooked versus deli bought pays for itself many times over.
 
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Joined Dec 18, 2010
Like your husband, I carry a sandwich to work. We have a lot of local dining options but since my bride seems to enjoy packing me a lunch... I cooperate and enjoy eating them. Like you, I prefer home roasted meat to deli meat, with the exception of the specialty meats I can’t easily make (until I retire and then I won’t need a sandwich so much). But I really dislike the shaved meat and cheese. Thin I like for some meat but not shaved. And thick for ham. I’ve considered buying a meat slicer but drop the idea every time because I can slice thin or thick with a good sharp knife. The only exception is slicing for Italian beef sandwiches... but those don’t transport very well in a lunchbox anyway.
 
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Joined Oct 9, 2008
For that kind of money, I'd buy a stainless Japanese made yanagiba or takobiki. Doesn't take counter space, and you can just keep sharpening it. And it's good for lots of other things. But I guess in your situation I can see the appeal of a commercial slicer.
 
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Joined Jun 14, 2018
Like your husband, I carry a sandwich to work. We have a lot of local dining options but since my bride seems to enjoy packing me a lunch... I cooperate and enjoy eating them. Like you, I prefer home roasted meat to deli meat, with the exception of the specialty meats I can’t easily make (until I retire and then I won’t need a sandwich so much). But I really dislike the shaved meat and cheese. Thin I like for some meat but not shaved. And thick for ham. I’ve considered buying a meat slicer but drop the idea every time because I can slice thin or thick with a good sharp knife. The only exception is slicing for Italian beef sandwiches... but those don’t transport very well in a lunchbox anyway.
My husband is a usually home daily truck driver with a fridge in his truck. Not easy for him to just stop somewhere and eat or buy a hotplate and cook something up in the truck or even put in a microwave but sandwiches work perfect. Far better than Subway and can easily find time to stop long enough to grab a sandwich and drink from the back and eat it while driving if he has to.

A meat slicer for $300 or so is well worth it in the long term If you like a general purpose electrical slicer and hate shaved, A Chef's Choice 615 for $125 or so is the consensus pick for the best home use device by far. You should consider that. Won't work for me but seems like something for you at 10 pounds, gear rather than belt driven for high torque, serrated blade for cutting bread with a flat edge available for extra purchase and extraordinarily easy to clean.

51WthHQ5xAL.jpg

 
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Joined Jun 14, 2018
For that kind of money, I'd buy a stainless Japanese made yanagiba or takobiki. Doesn't take counter space, and you can just keep sharpening it. And it's good for lots of other things. But I guess in your situation I can see the appeal of a commercial slicer.
Won't work for shaved Italian/Jewish deli like meat but good for other things.
 
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Joined Sep 5, 2018
I'm a Bronx boy transplanted to Massachusetts and I also lament not being to get so many great foods that we took for granted in NYC. So if a slicer will give you a little home-town comfort, you go girl! Now, to find a good stuffed artichoke in Massachusetts - that would be heaven.
 

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