Apparently Jewish delis are hurting Back East. However, they are thriving here on the Left Coast. An article in the New York Times actually gives props to two Southland delis: Langer's, just east of McArthur Park in Downtown, and the San Fernando Valley's own Brent's.
As a red-blooded Valley girl who was raised Jewish, with family hailing from New York and Chicago, I have grown to appreciate a good Deli. Alas and alack we have none in Panorama City anymore...the Deli that was in the strip mall on the Panorama side of Woodman is long gone, and that had been on the decline for a while before they packed it up. However, good ones are not far away. I agree about Brent's, but I really love Weilers on Nordhoff at Balboa in Northridge, and Art's on Ventura Blvd. in Studio City is still totally happening.
I am less fond of Jerry's Famous and Solleys, which is really the same deli under a different name. They serve rather nondescript generic Deli food at really crummy prices. However, the place has a bit of history...all through Andy Kaufman's comedy career he worked at Jerry's in Studio City. He never quit his day job because in his view you never know when your career will be over in Hollywood, and he felt it kept him grounded. One could debate that, however, he only quit after he started getting sick from cancer.
Anyway, it would be nice if someone took the plunge and opened a deli up here again. Perhaps just a stall in the Panorama Mall food court? I'd like a place where I could walk and get a turkey pastrami Reuben on rye with cole slaw on the side. Then again, we have delis here, they are just Latino and Filipino. Rincon Taurino has the feel of a deli but serves Barbacoa con Consume rather than Chicken Soup, and Toto's and Pinoy Pinay have Filipino soul food rather than Jewish soul food on sale here. Heck, we could use a Soul Food restaurant here too...oh well...