Mrs. Stamm’s Deli: Tender Chicken, Tough Price to Beat
Located at 44 East High Street, just a block past the intersection at Hanover, Mrs. Stamm’s Deli—or simply Stamm’s as it is referred to by the employees—is open Tuesday through Friday from 11 am until 7 pm, Saturday from 11 am until 5 pm, and Sunday from 11 am until 3 pm. This poultry lover’s heaven offers such delicacies as fried chicken (with your typical leg, thigh, or breast options), rotisserie chicken, chicken tenders, homemade chicken corn soup, a few seafood options, and a plethora of mouth-watering side dishes, including some Pennsylvania favorites like coleslaw and potato salad.
As a connoisseur of cheap cuisine, and as a Pennsylvania native, I thought the poultry emporium sounded promising. After a manageable trek (even with a foot of snow), a friend and I came upon the small storefront with the welcoming sign outside and entered to find a typical deli counter displaying what looked like enough meat to occupy an entire chicken farm. After a quick study of the expansive menu, I settled upon the chicken tender meal (which comes with two sides and costs a mere $5.50) with macaroni and cheese and fries. My companion selected the chicken sandwich and chicken corn soup, totaling $5.49.
A friendly man behind the counter shouted to the only other employee present to throw some french fries into the fryer. Meanwhile, he sliced a large, crispy-but-moist fried chicken breast in half and placed it on a large potato roll. In less than two minutes we were handed our heaping portions of wholesome goodness. We could hardly wait to sink our teeth into the generous meals.
The staff suggested we might enjoy our food in their dining area, which was just a step down into the adjacent room. While this dining room hardly rivaled that of Piatto or any other so-called “fancy restaurant,” it was quaint and full of charm. Several country-style signs were hung throughout the restaurant with silly sayings about family and friends. A vintage Stamm’s menu sign stretched the entire length of one wall in the dining room. On this snowy day we were the only two patrons in the restaurant and enjoyed our large plates in the small, but comfortable dining area.
My chicken tenders were just that—tender. Think of your traditional chicken tender—whether it is from a fast food restaurant or a chain establishment. Now triple the size and imagine it the perfect combination of crisp and juicy. The mac and cheese was also hearty, but not too cheesy. The fries, just out of the fryer, were your typical french fries, delicious and fresh on their own, but even tastier with any of the number of sauce options provided. My taste-testing friend noted that her sandwich was fresh, crispy, and most noticeably, HUGE. The chicken corn soup was packed with white meat chicken breast and loads of bright yellow corn. It was the perfect side for a wintry day.
The only downside to Stamm’s was that we were unable to finish our heaping portions. Although it was our first meal of the day around 1:30 pm, it was still just too much to eat in one sitting. I would recommend a first-timer tackle a more moderate portion—perhaps only a sandwich or a couple pieces of chicken. However, if you’re looking for a hearty portion at a budget price, the dinner meals are bargains that can hardly be rivaled.
If you are looking for a change from Kimberly’s Café or Fay’s and want to simultaneously walk off some of the calories consumed the night before, a journey to 44 East High Street would satisfy any foodie. Though I wouldn’t suggest bringing any vegetarians.