New Pop-Up Now Open: Little Pickle

Little Pickle, a new Phoenix pop-up concept from Chef Aaron May and Rick Phillips, offers guests a taste of New York City’s staple deli scene without leaving the comfort of the desert. 

Open only until September 2023, Little Pickle is a new pop-up restaurant located in the Esplanade office building in Phoenix. The new concept was created from Rick Phillips, owner of the iconic MercBar, and celebrity Chef Aaron May.

Phillips was tired of missing his favorite Jewish deli foods while away from New York City, and after much lamenting to Chef May, the duo got busy making the fare themselves. Little Pickle’s cute and quirky name was inspired by Phillips’ mother’s nickname for him as a child.

“We are thrilled to have the Little Pickle pop-up open at the Esplanade expanding our options for breakfast and lunch for tenants and visitors,” says Robert Marino, vice president of asset management for Tourmaline Capital Partners, in a press release. “Passionate operators with chef-driven concepts translates to great food and the partners we want to work with to continue to build an amenity-rich environment here at the Esplanade.”

Some items guests can expect to enjoy while visiting Little Pickle include the pastrami reuben with hand-carved hot pastrami on rye with all the fixings; an assortment of egg sandwiches; traditional scratch-made NYC bagels; and bagel toppings like moist corned beef, paper-thin smoked salmon and, of course, house-made shmears.

“Sure, you can get bagels and lox here, but c’mon…and we needed our Katz’s pastrami and Zabar’s salmon,” says May, in a press release. “Perfecting our recipes and opening Little Pickle has helped bring tastes of NYC to the Valley.”

Little Pickle is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. After 2 p.m., guests can only order coffee and pastries.

For more information, visit

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