One of London’s best reuben sandwich purveyors has permanently closed down, having formally gone out business in November 2021. Monty’s Deli, the creation of restaurateur Mark Ogus and chef Owen Barratt, which began life at Maltby Street Market in 2012, was renowned for its singular brand of reubens, salt beef, “Jewish comfort food menu,” pop branding, mid-century aesthetic, and sought-after merch. It had closed its celebrated Hoxton Street hub in 2019, having chosen to build on its move into concessions at Old Spitalfields Market and Market Halls Victoria in 2018 and 2019 respectively. Then, the Covid-19 pandemic forced it into relying on selling salt beef, bagels, and merch online to keep it afloat. It has proved not to be enough.
Eater understands from sources close to the company that Monty’s became insolvent earlier this year and, as a result, “had to go into voluntary liquidation.” One investor contacted Eater with information appearing to have been issued by the administrators on behalf of Monty’s. That information stated that Monty’s entered voluntary liquidation on 19 November.
Sources added: “Covid was tough for the business and although it did well initially out of the sandwich [meal] kits etc., the income from that dropped off massively around March 2021 as things started to get back to normal and the income from the wholesale part of the business wasn’t enough to fill the gap.
“All the Monty’s stalls [in Spitalfields’s Kitchens and Victoria’s Market Halls] had had to be vacated over 2020 and there was no other way of generating the income the business needed to keep things afloat.
“By this stage the only remaining employees were Mark and Owen so no one was left in the lurch and everyone received furlough during those difficult months of 2020 where everything was closed.”
The source said that “it was a very sad way to go out” but that the owners remained “proud” of what they had achieved with Monty’s Deli since the early 2010s.