Walk into Emily's Pork Store in the historically Italian neighborhood of East Williamsburg, and you're likely to find owner Gennaro “Jerry” Aliperti playing butcher, sandwich composer, and jokester to customers and friends. Emily's is a true locals' place — Aliperti says about 85 percent of his business comes from regulars. This is a specialty store from another time, and it remains committed to old traditions and high standards. Aliperti's uncle Frank opened the shop in 1974, naming it after his wife. When Aliperti began working here at age thirteen, his first job was stocking the wooden shelves with canned Italian products. He soon learned to make sausages and to butcher. This is still a neighborhood meeting place, and you'll hear lightning-fast Italian spoken as you scan a menu that has changed very little over 41 years. Here's a helpful hint: Emily's makes the best Italian sandwiches in Brooklyn. Choose one of two bread selections — both made by Aliperti's cousin at Napoli Bakery just down the street on Metropolitan Avenue — from a center shelf and hand it to Aliperti. Regulars do this as soon as they enter the shop, and they always choose (correctly) the crusty French-style baguette over the thicker sub-style roll. Skip the rudimentary sandwich board and take a few minutes to peruse the specialty cheeses and meats. Once you've ogled the soppressata, mortadella, prosciutto cotto, and wine-soaked umbriaco, get Aliperti's seasoned opinion on what's best and just go for it. Perhaps it's the house-made salami, ham, and provolone with fresh roasted sweet peppers, or the sliced rare roast beef, made fresh daily, with jus and marinated peppers. Or you might like some fresh roast pork and maybe a little bresaola (top round that has been salted and dried) with Jerry's homemade mozzarella. Everything is sliced to order, and everything is priced far below the New York mean.
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