Restaurant Date
Giacomo's Bread & More 2003-07-16 B A B- C+ A B
Schlotzsky's Deli 2003-10-28 A- B+ B- C+ A B+
Arni's 2003-11-11 C- C- B- B A- B-
Deli Jack's 2004-01-29 B- B B- C+ A- B-
Galahad's Cafe and Spirits 2004-02-24 A- A- A- C+ A- A-
Reggie's Bakery & Catering 2004-03-19 A- A- B C+ A- A-
Champps Americana 2004-03-30 B C+ A- A- B+ B+
Brix - a Zionsville bistro 2004-04-27 B- B- A- A- C+ B
Kahn's Delicatessen 2004-05-25 B+ B- B+ A- C+ B
McAlister's Deli 2004-06-22 B+ A- B A- A- A-
Jason's Deli 2004-07-03 A- A- A B B+ A-
Friendly Tavern 2004-07-20 A A- B+ A- A- A-
Sunrise Cafe 2004-08-24 A A A- B+ A A
Dooley O'Toole's 2004-11-23 B B+ B+ A- A- B+
Big Dave's Deli & Meats 2006-08-01 A- A B+ B+ B A-
Eagle Creek Coffee Company 2006-11-16 C- C C+ A- A- C
Slaviansky Bazar 2007-01-23 A- B+ B- B C- B

Giacomo's Bread & More : The atmosphere is a little lattice-crazy. The fluorescent lighting gives it a spartan, hospital feel; but it had a hometown feel that you can't capture in a big city. The toasting masked the flavor of the homemade bread. The corned beef tasted fresh and the sauce was tangy, tasty, and abundant.

Schlotzsky's Deli : The bread was excellent. The ratio of meat to other ingredients was perfect. The Thousand Island dressing was tangy, cheese was flavorful and nicely melted. Atmosphere was typical of a chain deli.

Arni's : I would like to start off noting the positives of our experience. I did enjoy the atmosphere of Arni's, it contained bikes jetting out of the ceiling, large wooden pillars separating a spacious strip mall restaurant. I also gave the service an A-, the server was friendly and prompt. Of course, the main event here was the Reuben, and the sandwich at Arni's fell short. The Reuben at Arni's was served as an open-faced sandwich and I think a few of the problems were due to this adaptation. The cheese was an oily film on top and wasn't altogether tasty, I'm not quite sure they used the traditional Swiss. If the cheese was bad, the dressing and meat were worse. The dressing (I'm thinking they used a house product or Thousand Island substitute) lacked the needed tang to offset the kraut. They also included tomatoes which added another bland and uncommon taste to the traditional Reuben. The meat was old, dry and tasteless. It was dry around the edges and although moist in the center, it was tasteless. They did seem to serve a generous portion, although it may have been too much of a bad thing. The rye bread seemed toasted and store-bought. They seemed to try to cut costs for the portion sizes by using this bread. My overall impression of the sandwich is that Arni's tried to make-up for an inferior sandwich by creativity (open-faced and using tomatoes) and portion, but give me the same 'old and I would have been happy.

Deli Jack's : This Reuben's qualities included the corned beef, it was thick and flavorful. The bread was flavorable, but toasted which I do not prefer. On the negative side, the dressing was below average. The saurkraut was not drained properly and caused the bread on the bottom to be soggy, a common mistake.

Galahad's Cafe and Spirits : Having not been able to attend the previous Reuben Tuesday at Galahad's, I can only comment on the current review. This Reuben was excellent. The bread was a toasted rye, the meat was fresh, tasty, and a thicker cut then the average Reuben. The cheese was perfectly melted and the kraut and dressing were above average (they need to drain the kraut a bit more). Overall, the sandwich rates as one of my favorites and I would recommend it to people who don't want to spend a fortune for the Reuben at Shapiro's. The server was friendly and was omni-present in a good way. The atmosphere was my only complaint (and I believe the management has done all they can with the architecture they inherited). The smoke was overpowering. I think when they built this restaurant, the dining area was considered an afterthought. At any rate, I would definitely battle the smoke to have another one of these Reubens.

Reggie's Bakery & Catering : I was very impressed with this Reuben if not the atmosphere. I think this restaurant has a "hole in the wall" atmosphere with great food. The Reuben was flavorful, the meat tender and the saurkraut and cheese fresh. The bread is the best feature of this sandwich, though, it simply is the best bread I have had with a Reuben (hear that, Shapiro's). The bread is homemade, fresh, and each bite is delicious. I'm glad this place is a 25 minute drive from work because I would be eating here every day.

Champps Americana : I have been looking forward to Champps for a couple of weeks now and while the overall experience was decent, I was slightly disappointed. Champps is known for its gigantic portions (and slightly inflated prices) and the Reuben followed that scenario. This Reuben was above average but I held it to a higher standard given the $8.50 they charged for it. The bread was its best attibute, I believe the menu said it was a Russian dark rye -- but we seemed to taste a bit of pumpernickel in it, anyway, it was great. The meat was a little dry and the kraut, cheese, and dressing were all average. I love the atmosphere at Champps, we were able to sit in a sunny indoor patio/veranda type area which was very pleasant.

Brix - a Zionsville bistro : I enjoyed the atmosphere, it had a real "Bistro" feel to it. There was big band music in the background, unique art, intricate lighting fixtures and a spiral staircase. The sandwich tasted fine but did not seem to contain any sauerkraut, so I find it hard to term it a Reuben. The bread was flatter and crisper than most (similiar to a panini), I prefer thicker bread, but this was fine. The meat was fresh, the dressing was tangy, and the kraut was non-existent. It took over 30 minutes for our food to arrive, I think their kitchen might have been cramped, the dining area was cramped as well (but it gave the atmosphere a quaintness). I would say the speed was below average, the sandwich was average, and the atmosphere was above average.

Kahn's Delicatessen : Having been to Kahn's before (never having the Reuben), I had high expectations. I enjoyed the atmosphere, the restaurant is split into two sections, one is for wine, and the other is a deli. This deli is definitely for a crowd with "refined taste". If you have a hankering for Blueberry Beer, or Orange Cran-Apple Berry Mustard -- this is your place. I enjoyed seeing creative condiments at $5 a jar. The sandwich was good, but not great. The meat, cheese, kraut were all quality, but didn't stand out. The sandwich is made with Russian dressing (which I guess makes it truely authentic), but the dressing wasn't a huge positive or negative. The bread was good, but not toasted -- I favor toasted bread, it seems to add to the sandwich.

McAlister's Deli : The beef was thick, but a little bland. The bread was average and a little soggy. The kraut, cheese, dressing were all blended perfectly with just the right amount.

Jason's Deli : I was thrilled to submit a Reuben review from the road, so I hope my enthusiasm does not taint my analysis. This sandwich was enormous and I thought it was a great value at $5.99 (you'll have to excuse my wife, she's new at this Reuben thing). For my taste, the sandwich would've been perfect if they had used Thousand Island instead of Russian dressing. I think Chris told me that that Reuben's were orignally made with Russian dressing, but I think whoever started to use Thousand Island deserves a medal. Russian dressing does not quite have the tang and people seem to use less of it. The meat was heaping over the sandwich and was cut in thin slices to not "overwelm" the sandwich. That is my main complaint with Shapiro's, the meat overwhelms the sandwich and almost made me nauseous when I had it last week. The bread was decent, but not memorable. Jason's Deli seems to have the taste of a small town deli, but mass-produces food for suburban Kansas City. I hope they come to Indianapolis so everyone can enjoy them.

Friendly Tavern : A "Top 5" Reuben

Sunrise Cafe : The Reuben at Sunrise Cafe was so tasty that I tried to steal my friend's last half when he wasn't looking. I'm starting to notice a commonality with great Reuben establisments, they make their own bread. The bread was the best feature, a marbled rye, buttered on both sides and lightly crispy. The cheese had more flavor than most, the meat was perfectly sliced and very tasty. The sauerkraut was drained thoroughly and fresh; average Reuben establishments need to take notice. The dressing, which was served on the side, was tangy with the right consistency. The atmosphere was average, but I would've eaten this Reuben in a dumpster. Another "top five" Reuben.

Dooley O'Toole's : This sandwich seemed to be as average as it gets. There is really nothing bad I can say about it, but I really can't think of anything good about it either. The meat was dry but not that dry, the bread was decent and nicely toasted, but it became a bit soggy over the course of lunch. The sauce wasn't memorable (really, I can't remember it at all right now). I wish the sandwich was significantly better or worse so I could make this review more creative. Even I am getting bored writing about this average sandwich. I did enjoy the atmosphere, it had a cozy tavern feel and a fire would have been perfect. Garrison Keillor always mentions how the kids in Lake Wobegon are "above average", I sure wish this sandwich was.

Big Dave's Deli & Meats : I loved the mabled rye bread. The seemed to be a good balance of meat, cheese, kraut, with the dressing on the side. The bread was lightly toasted which I wish more places would do. A very fine sandwich.

Eagle Creek Coffee Company : This Reuben was definitely sub-par. The bread was dry (and not toasted), the meat was thin and bland and the dressing was thinly applied (we asked for more). The kraut was fine, but you really can't screw up something out of a jar. I did enjoy the atmosphere, they had a nice "coffee-house" look with sofas, etc. The service was admirable when approached by the "Reuben-army".

Slaviansky Bazar : I thought this was quite a unique experience. We ate at a newly opened Russian deli, so while the service wasn't up to par, the place was at least interesting with the different types of food we noticed. I thought the Reuben had a great flavor that I haven't tasted before. The cheese and meat weren't your standard Reuben fare, and you could definitely taste the bold flavors. I wouldn't classify the bread as anything special and I think it brought the overall quality of the sandwich closer to what you might think is average. The service was atrocious. Even after Chris called and prepared them for our group, they still were extremely inefficient. It made me think of old Communist Russian grocery stores and pharmacies. I heard stories that if you needed aspirin, you had to go to one clerk to get a piece of paper, go to another to get it off the shelf, then go back to the original clerk to buy it. I think there was even a fourth step in there somewhere. I hope they iron out some of the kinks because it still was a great sandwich.