When David Allen mentioned a German joint in nearby Upland, I knew I wouldn't be able to resist for long. I've dragged poor Meg to any number of German restaurants, from the elegant, hipsterish Suppenkuche and the comfy Schnitzel Haus (conveniently located next to the X-rated bakery) in the Bay Area, to the uber-kitchy Red Lion Inn and gone-but-not-much-lamented Lowenbrau Keller in Los Angeles. I was dyin' to check out the Upland German Deli.
As David suggested, it was a little tough to find. Google Maps managed to point me at the wrong side of the street, which complicated matters a bit -- it's on the north side of Foothill, back in a little tiny strip mall, impossible to see from the street. Argh.
It's mostly a deli, as the name suggests, chock full of everything German. There were a few dozen German magazines and a German-language California newspaper (who knew!?), and a zillion different German products, most of them unfamiliar to us. I guess I've led a sheltered life, but who knew you could get ketchup and mayonnaise together in a squeeze tube?
To our delight, they had not only sandwiches, but also some dinner specials. Meg had Kassler (smoked pork) and I had cabbage roll; both came with a side of speatzle (funky German egg noodles) and a complementary dessert. It was hearty and comfortable, if not amazing; nobody there is trying to make it a fine dining experience, and that's just fine by me -- it's a deli. I particularly enjoyed Meg's sauerkraut, although I'm not sure it's really supposed to be nearly so sweet.
The service was authentically German, with a very reserved kind of friendliness -- "I like you okay, but don't expect me to crack a smile." I enjoyed the little dining room, with blue-and-white checked tablecloths, a kind of faux brick wallpaper and some hangings on the wall, although, again, it really isn't trying to be anything it isn't. I couldn't ask for more.