New deli tempts diners north of the city

NORWICH – A new eatery just north of the city has opened its doors for business, offering something a little different for area diners in search of something new.

The North End Deli officially opened its doors for business at its Rt. 12 location across from the Aim Fitness Plaza in November. Within weeks, owners Fiona Steimus and Mike La Croce have made a name for themselves with a loyal customer base and new customers sitting down to eat every day. “It’s been a great partnership,” said Steimus, who does the majority of the cooking and baking, while La Croce waits on customers and keeps track of the business end of things. “We work really well together.”

Food service certainly isn’t anything new to the co-owners of North End Deli. Both Steimus and La Croce have a well established background in food service – La Croce as a former food service worker at DCMO BOCES in Norwich and a graduate of SUNY Morrisville’s restaurant management program; and Steimus is a former food service worker at the Bainbridge-Guilford Central School.

Steimus also ventured on her own entrepreneurial undertaking in 2007, when she opened Crossroads Cafe, which was coincidentally located at what is now the twosome’s new enterprise, the North End Deli. “That experience has given us a good customer base,” she said, “It’s really given us a lot of confidence and still, not a lot of people know that I’m back.”

So what is it that separates the North End Deli from other local eateries? According to La Croce, it’s a variety of homemade soups and deserts, and breads that are baked fresh daily. Steimus and La Croce are also doing what they can to support the local economy, buying ingredients locally whenever possible and selling honey and maple syrup that’s produced by local farmers.

North End Deli offers a variety of dishes, from classic breakfast courses including eggs, pancakes, french toast and home fries, to deli style sandwiches and a traditional variety of burgers from the grill. “We also have a lot of vegetarian choices,” La Croce said, pointing to different salads and the deli’s specialty “Veg Heads” menu. “We also want to add more gluten-free products to the menue sometime in the future.”

For now, North End Deli remains a breakfast and lunch eatery, but plans are to branch into catering, and possibly even dinner hours further down the road, said La Croce. “We do offer delivery,” he added. “I think we can offer something that is pretty unique for the area.”

The North End Deli is opened from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. For additional information, contact the deli at 336-4445.

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