Address: 1574 Walkley Rd, Ottawa
Hours: 10:30am – 6pm (Tue); 9:30am – 6pm (Wed); 9:30am – 7pm (Thu); 9am – 8pm (Fri); 8:30am – 4pm (Sat); closed Sun-Mon
While looking up directions to the Drive Test Ontario office on Walkley to complete my bureaucratic transition to being an Ontarian, I noticed that Polish deli Polka Delicatessen was a stone’s throw away. A visit was in hand to try to salvage my afternoon.
After a minimal wait and – and one depressing new license photo later – I moseyed over to Polka to check out this new-to-me spot. It’s a small space, and is similar to many of the eastern European delis in the west end of the city – there’s a couple small rows of imported packaged goods, a cooler with some perishables, and a deli counter displaying their respectable selection of proteins. And let’s not forget two freezers dedicated to pierogies!
I strolled through the aisles to examine the various foreign goods, but my hunger quickly took me to the deli counter. There’s not much signage for their prepared food options, other than a chalkboard stating that their sandwiches are $4.45 (plus tax). I inquired about their selection, and after hearing a few of their meats, I went for the Polish ham with everything (cheese, pickles, mustard and mayo).
I found the sound of a meat slicer to be very encouraging, as it’s the rare place where your sandwich meat is sliced to order! Once I had my sandwich in hand, and after completing the transaction with a fiver, I was on my way. I would have taken some of their frozen pierogies ($5.99 small, $13.99 large) home, but I was going to be making other stops on the way and didn’t want them to thaw out.
Layers of delicious, finely-shaved ham were, uh, sandwiched within a hefty Kaiser roll. I couldn’t quite place what type of cheese was in it, perhaps a Swiss, with a mild bit of tang and saltiness to it. Long slices of what appeared to be their house-made dills made for a nice contrast to the ham, although the excessive dose of mayo was a bit messy and distracting.
It’s been a tasty experience trying out the different eastern European delis around Ottawa, and Polka Delicatessen has been another success with a solid sandwich at an impressively affordable price. Next time I’ll just have to make sure nothing gets between me and their pierogies.