Welcome to the Neighborhood: Dok's Deli
Dok’s Deli in Fox Point is a sandwich shop on a whole other level. Owner Tyler Doktor and staff create brines from scratch, smoke all meats in-house, and they even make their own pickles, fry their own potato chips and mix up housemade condiments like smoked tomato catsup. They are also expanding their catering business, and they feature daily vegan specials for non-meat-eaters.
Doktor is a former Johnson and Wales student, who always knew he wanted to open his own restaurant. His grandfather has a history as a butcher at some of the most well known delicatessens in New York, where Doktor visited when he was a kid. “I grew up loving cooking and food has always run in the family,” he says. “I like to believe my grandfather’s looking down on me to see what I’ve accomplished.”
Dok’s inherited a smoker with the space, previously occupied by United BBQ. They rent the equipment from the previous tenants and use it to make the beef brisket, corned beef and smoked chicken and turkey that are pulled or sliced and served in between freshly baked bread that comes from Rainbow Bakery in Cranston. Doktor adapted a brisket recipe that originated from Katz’s famous delicatessen in New York City to create the 200 pounds of brisket he serves each week. The beef comes from Kinnealey Meats of Brockton, Massachusetts, and it’s braised for seven to fourteen days, then it gets pulled as needed. After being brushed with oil and rubbed with a secret crust, it marinates for another two days, and then it gets smoked. “The product is just amazing compared to processed meat,” Doktor says. “Why bring in any pre-packaged stuff when you can put in the extra effort and really make yourself stand out?”
Dok’s Deli’s most popular sandwich is the Roadhouse, named after the movie. It comes stacked with housemade pastrami, corned beef, house-cured bacon, cheddar and Swayze sauce (garlicky mustard and mayo) on sourdough ($8.95) with a pickle and chips. Another favorite is Havana Gila ($8.95) with house-cured ham, sliced smoked turkey, pickles, Swiss cheese and Dijonaise sauce grilled on flatbread. Doktor also is proud of the traditional Scandinavian-style grava lox ($10.95) served with capers, onions, tomato and cream cheese on a bagel. Customers can purchase meats by the pound and sides by the half-pint, pint and quart.
Dok’s may serve up lots of cold cuts, but it's clear this deli refuses to take any shortcuts. 146 Ives St., Providence, 369-7633, doksdeli.com
Pictured: Owner Tyler Doktor and sous chef Justin Pflanzer.