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Exploring the Hudson Valley: Rosticceria Rossi and Sons Delicatessen

Rosticceria Rossi and Sons Delicatessen


I like to think of myself as a sandwich man.

When I was six, it was all about the open-face tuna melt on white bread—cut diagonally, of course. During my senior year of high school, I was nourished almost exclusively by chicken cutlet, Munster cheese, bacon and bread, with honey mustard as my drink.
Here at Vassar, I made it through freshman year on smoked turkey club melts alone. During sophomore year, I made the switch to the Vassar club, after growing tired of the garlic mayo.

But the sub par offerings of the Retreat did not fulfill my sandwich desires. The slimy, tasteless deli meats (my roast beef once had an appalling metallic shimmer) simply don’t make the cut, no pun intended. And let’s not even get into a discussion about the food at the All Campus Dining Center.

So what’s there to do? Luckily, all you have to do is keep reading.
Let it be known that the information that you are about to read will change your life at Vassar. You have a choice. Are you bold and brave? Will you take the red pill and follow Morpheus to learn about the Matrix? Or will you take the blue pill and suffer the stomach pains and agony of “Retreater’s Remorse”?

For the bold, there is Rosticceria Rossi and Sons Delicatessen, located on South Clover Street, not far from the Mid-Hudson Bridge. You can just call it “Rossi.” A family-run Italian deli, the atmosphere is both inviting and delicious (and while I’m no Latin scholar, I’m pretty sure that it’s no coincidence that “delicatessen” and “delicious” both start with “deli.”) The aroma of freshly baked bread, the allure of piping hot Italian dishes, not to mention an entire farm’s worth of pig hanging from the ceiling, tease you with cured, smoked goodness. At times it can be almost overwhelming. You might be asking, “Where do I even start?” Have no fear, ’cause Levi’s here.

For the sandwich aficionado like myself, look no further than Roberto’s Imported Cured Meat Panini. Prosciutto, capicola, fresh mozzarella, roasted peppers and your choice of condiment (I go for both the fresh pesto and the herbed mayo) all sandwiched between the best (no, seriously, the best) bread you’ll ever have—all evenly toasted for your gluttonous pleasure.

For the meatatarians, I implore you to try the Roberto’s Imported Meat Panini with turkey as well (that’s turkey as well, not as a substitute). While you’re at it, go for the large; it’s well worth the money and you’re a growing boy (or girl), so eat up. Plus, you can always eat the leftover half at 3 a.m.

While this review has a clear bias toward any food that was once breathing, it’s important to note that Rossi caters to vegetarians, as well. At Rossi, it’s all about the Eggplant Parmesan. I hate eggplant, and even I couldn’t resist. Trust me, this thing is unbelievable.
Of course, Rossi also serves hot pasta dishes and frozen ravioli to take home and cook, as well as an assortment of Italian groceries and deserts. It would be a huge error on my part to not mention Rossi’s Chicken Cutlet Parmesan. It is, without a doubt, Poughkeepsie’s finest, and four out of five doctors recommend that you should eat it twice a week.

Well there you go. It took me four years to find the perfect sandwich shop and deli in the area, and I bestow the knowledge upon the general public. You know the secret now, and you’ll know it forever.

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