BRIDGEPORT — Peter Soluri sounds like an exacting type of guy, at least when it comes to blending spices for sausages and weighing Italian cold cuts for sandwiches.
"It's gotta be consistent. We weigh everything. Whatever we do it's gotta be 100 percent right. Not 99 percent right." he said.
Soluri, 51, reopened Soluri & Sons Italian Deli last week after closing the original shop at 31st and Wells streets after a five-year run in the early 1990s, he said.
It seems like old regulars have already found the new spot, a small storefront at 3549 S. Halsted St.
Open just one week, the deli counter was busy during a recent visit, with blue collars taking advantage of a grand opening $5 sandwich special and Giovanni Soluri, Peter's son, taking Easter Sunday sausage orders by phone.
The deli menu is sparse and to the point, just seven sandwiches, three salads and a soup of the day. Guests can also take home a variety of imported Italian meats, cheeses and homemade sides by the pound.
The roster of sandwiches (they call 'em poorboys) consists of fresh bread from D'Amato's Bakery stuffed with meats, cheeses and dressing.
"They're perfect. Better than anything I've ever had," Joe Russo, 41, of Bridgeport, said while leaving with a bag full of sandwiches. "I love them. My kids love them."
Thick square slices of D'Amato's pizza are also available for $2.50 per piece.
Soluri is particularly proud of his homemade sausage, made with his great great grandfather's recipe. It's available in three varieties — mild, hot and extra hot, available by request only — for $3.99 per pound.
It's an old-school place, one that's run by the family.
Giovanni, 23, mans the counter, handwriting sandwich orders for the kitchen workers while Peter slices meat for each sandwich order — "everything fresh," he says — as his mother Caterina stands watch. Another one of Soluri's sons, Peter, is a part-timer.
For Soluri, the deli's debut marks the end of a long road.
The building was secured about two years ago, but he said it's taken that long to get ready for business. All the while, a "coming soon" sign has been posted in the window.
"I got my money's worth out of that sign. I couldn't wait to open another deli," he said. "I found the opportunity and I took it."
Soluri & Sons Italian Deli, 3549 S. Halsted St., is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sundays. 773-247-8777. Local delivery is available.