Mile End Deli: Social Media Flare Sours Smoked Meat's Return
It took Mile End Sandwich almost a month to get smoked meat back on its menu after Hurricane Sandy destroyed the Red Hook commissary. But after raising the sandwich price from $12 to $14, a heated discourse between owner Noah Bernamoff and unhappy patrons hit Twitter and Facebook.
A disappointed customer took to Facebook and accused Bernamoff of "stealing" since the bagel she ordered wasn't the deli's signature Montreal bagel, and thus started a backlash on the social media platforms between Bernamoff and Mile End customers.
Last night, EVLocal chronicled smoked meat's return. Bernamoff said the meat was produced upstate and transported back to the city, which accounted for the post-Hurricane price increase.
"Our issues are much more fundamental than a dollar a sandwich," Bernamoff said on Tuesday afternoon. "We've increased costs because of our inability to do stuff in Red Hook. Traveling upstate, working in other people's kitchens, taking the help of some of our restaurant friends . . . that comes at a cost."
I love people who complain about sandwiches being $1 or $2 more since the storm. Um, ya, how the fuck else am I going to rebuild a bakery!?— Mile End Deli (@mileenddeli) November 26, 2012
"When you create an analogy between a $13 sandwich and robbery," Bernamoff said, "I took it personally because I'm not stealing anything from anybody."
Bernamoff said he received many e-mails in the past 24 hours, but one stood out. "I woke up this morning and got an e-mail from a total stranger who was like, I love your place, but there's no way you're going to make the situation better," he said. "You should apologize and eat the shit sandwich. That person was absolutely right."