Decent Italian deli in Oakland. Why did we not know? I’ll bet when we were told we dismissed the information because of how often we have been misled by people who have lame data points when it comes to certain kinds of food. Anyway, we were driving on Telegraph in Temescal when we saw a sign for Genova Deli (5095 Telegraph Avenue, Oakland) and thought, “What the hell – let’s stop.” We made our way around the nice-ish rectangular strip mall to find a jam-packed Italian deli that looked like it actually had something going on besides Columbus and Saag’s (now owned by Hormel, did you know this?) products. Lots of counters with prepared food and cold cuts and a serious sandwich operation. The sandwiches are made on good, crusty rolls and have a respectable amount of protein. You’ll find all the suspects here, like various prosciuttos and salamis. They have many varieties of salami, not just Genoa and Sopressata, so this is a place to get a real salumi fix on. There are packaged goods, like beans and pasta, alongside your truffle and olive oils. One end of the store is dedicated to baked goods, and you can have a cup of coffee and a piece of cake there. I am told they make excellent ravioli. I’ll bet this place is out of control during the Christmas season.
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