Eating & Drinking

Popular German Town Deli to close after 30 years in Ottawa

The German Town Deli, which is scheduled to close on Jan. 29, was a very popular lunch spot for civil servants and office workers who loved the sandwich specials — and German chocolate. Photo above by Trevor Meawasige, Ottawa Magazine.


The German Town Deli, a popular lunchtime establishment on Slater Street,  is closing its doors on Jan. 29 after more than 30 years of business.

The shop is known to many downtown workers for its inexpensive take-away sandwiches, but also holds a selection of imported grocery items and souvenirs from Germany.

Photo by Trevor Meawasige, Ottawa Magazine.
Photo by Trevor Meawasige, Ottawa Magazine.

Owner Perry Schneider decided not to renew his lease and confirms the business is closing for good.

“I’m retiring,” he said. “I’m going to take it easy and then start to adjust to a different lifestyle … 32 years has been a long stretch.”

Schneider is Canadian-born but his parents, Ursula and Guenter Schneider, came from Germany and first operated a grocery store in Ottawa South from 1960 to 1978. In 1980 they opened the German Town Deli downtown on Slater Street, and a few years later in 1984, Perry Schneider took over the family business.

When the deli made the announcement on Jan. 19 people flocked to the sandwich shop for one last visit.

Schneider was overwhelmed by the support, especially since it was such a cold day for people to go out. Asked if he has anything special in mind before the shop closes, he humbly replied that he will simply “bow out, no big party.”

For many, The German Town Deli was a treasured gem and a taste of Europe that didn’t break the bank. These days, it’s rare to find a ham & cheese sandwich for only $2, and a business owner who was always present and ran the place, for the most part, as a one-man show.

Photo by Kelsey, Ottawa Magazine.
Photo by Kelsey Kromodimoeljo, Ottawa Magazine.

 

 

 

 

The German Town Deli joins a growing list of closings in the past few weeks — Maxwell’s, Raw Sugar Café, Mellos and Hung Sum have all bowed out of the Ottawa food scene. Hy’s Steakhouse is scheduled to close next month.

Stop by The German Town Deli and say auf wiedersehen until the closing day on Jan. 29.