If delis can be in your DNA, they're definitely in Jesse Seufert's; he grew up helping his dad, Fred Seufert, at the family's longtime business in Holtsville, Sports Deli.
This summer, the younger Seufert, 32, took the deli baton and opened his own, Farmhouse Gourmet, in Centereach. "People told me it's going to be a lot of work," said Seufert. "And I'm like, I know, I grew up around it."
At first glance, Farmhouse Gourmet looks like a classic Long Island delicatessen, with a handful of tables, a fridge full of sodas and iced tea and glass cases stocked with deli meats and prepared salads, such as caprese and potato.
But there's also a large farm table in the front window and plenty of brick and rustic wood. Seufert chose the name Farmhouse Gourmet as a nod to the animals that yield key ingredients — chicken, pigs and cows — but Seufert also seems to have the work ethic of a farmer, arriving at 5 a.m. each day to make his own bagels, a skill he learned from his dad. Farmhouse Gourmet serves breakfast all day, including a classic breakfast egg sandwich ($5) and a pancake quesadilla ($11) stuffed with eggs, sausage, peppers, onions, and cheddar and jack cheeses.
Seufert taps a few local bakeries for specialty breads such as brioche, garlic focaccia and cranberry-walnut loaves for sandwiches, burgers and panini. Among the six burgers ($8 to $10) is a breakfast burger topped with shaved ham, bacon, cheddar and a sunny-side up egg, served on brioche; sandwiches ($9) include the Salt & Boca, a towering construction of grilled chicken cutlet, prosciutto, spinach, melted mozzarella and gravy. Panini ($9) and sides such as fried potatoes with smoked pulled pork, cheddar and coleslaw ($5, small) round out the menu.
Farmhouse Gourmet also has a make-to-order chopped salad bar ($6 to $7, plus extras) whose toppings reach beyond tomatoes and croutons to more offbeat items such as grilled shrimp, red quinoa and roasted corn.
Farmhouse Gourmet is open daily from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., closing at 3 p.m. on Sunday.
Farmhouse Gourmet, 2212 Middle Country Rd., Centereach. 631-676-3241.