Dan N Vi’s – Detroit Icon and Best Deli Sandwich

When Matt worked in Hazel Park, just outside Detroit, he would tell me about lots of great places they would get lunch. Even though we moved from Michigan 11 years ago, we have our favorite places we like to eat. BUT, last summer, Matt offered to take us for a sandwich in Detroit, on our way up to Frankenmuth. Honestly, I’m not a big sandwich eater, so I didn’t have much expectations. 

Bites taken from Dan & Vi's deli slice

From first bite of my Dan & Vi’s “deli slice” I was hooked, and so were the girls. 

As we made plans for this years visit to Michigan, I said we had to go back, and take our oldest, since she wasn’t with us. Nice excuse for me to get my fix, right? 

I decided to reach out, so we had the pleasure of talking with management to learn more about the history, and future, of the Detroit Icon. 

Woman standing by graffiti art wall

It’s no surprise to hear of emptying neighborhoods in Detroit, and Poletown East is no exception. Despite the decline over the past several decades, there stands one place keeping this community alive. Dan & Vi’s has survived the test of time, “Serving the D Since 1963” and plans to keep that going!

Mission

What started as a way to serve quick lunch in Detroit, has evolved into a community family. Dan & Vi’s vision was to create a place that served high quality, affordable food, quickly, for those working in and around Northern Detroit. Back in 1963, with just 30 minutes for lunch, you had to find a place to get in and out quickly. 

Dan & Vi's employee making a deli slice pie

Dan & Vi’s continues to pride themselves on keeping lunch affordable, and quick, without ever compromising the quality of the food they put out. To keep things moving along during their busy lunch time, they often take note how long it takes for a customer to come in the door, and get back out. This is all about patrons being able to enjoy lunch, instead of standing in line. A thank you to the hard working citizens making Detroit great. 

History of Ownership

Dan & Vi's management team with back of shirts

Dan & Vi’s has been passed down within the community, and family, for over 56 years. Original owners, Dan and Violet, had a passion for serving the community, and bringing people together. Sadly Dan passed in the 1970’s, but Vi kept the shop running strong. Once Violet was ready to retire she approached Billy, a long time employee from the community. Billy would get first dibs on taking the place over, so he and his wife decided to take the leap. After almost 30 years, it was time to pass it off to Aaron, Billy’s son, and current owner. 

Food

Iconic Dan & Vi's deli slice

It wasn’t until the mid 2000s their flagship sandwich, “the deli slice” was created. Two pizza crusts baked with butter and parmesan, layered with salami, ham, cheese, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and Italian dressing. They had no idea the craze they had started. 

Turkey Club deli slice

The menu has been expanded to include more signature sandwiches such as turkey, club, and even a veggie. Each with the same delicious bread as “the deli slice” but just different seasonings. 

Rack of BetterMade potato chips

You can also find Detroit favorites like Faygo pop, and Better Made potato chips to make your lunch complete. 

The Dan & Vi’s Family

How exactly has Dan & Vi’s survived? One word….Family. 

I agree with our oldest, Emma. “The food is great, but the hospitality is even better.”  They may be on a mission to get you through the line quickly, but that doesn’t stop Eric from knowing all the regulars. General manager, Dawn, let us know, they celebrate with customers like they are family. Whether it’s a new job, a birth, a marriage, or a new home. Sadly, it also hits them hard when they lose someone. 

Dan & Vi's team of employees

Who would leave a corporate job of 14 years? Manager Tina, did just that. Once she got a taste of the family working environment, and what their mission is, she was hooked. Tina had never even heard of place before being offered a job, and she quickly learned how many of her Facebook friends raved about the place when she announced her new position. 

Future

After set backs due to major road construction last year, Dan & Vi’s is hoping to break ground this coming spring on a new building. Something with a better work flow, but same feel. The new building will be on the same property, so they won’t be going anywhere. They plan to stay within the community. 

Dan & Vi's pinterest graphic

Be sure to follow them on Facebook to stay in the know, because there will be shipping available on orders for a limited time. They’ve already made shipments to Florida in the past, so you know we are excited about that!! 

5951 Chene St

Detroit, Michigan

(313) 924-6077

9am-5pm Monday through Friday

More historic fun around Detroit at Greenfield Village!

33 thoughts on “Dan N Vi’s – Detroit Icon and Best Deli Sandwich

  • September 19, 2019 at 3:43 pm
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    That flagship sandwich looks amazing! I wish I could try it!

    • September 20, 2019 at 7:55 am
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      Follow them on Facebook!! They plan to open up shipping during the Holidays. It is so worth trying!!

  • September 19, 2019 at 4:12 pm
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    The Deli Slice looks so yummy. At first, I didn’t know what the bread was but when you explained it just sounds so good I’d stand in line for it.

    • September 20, 2019 at 8:06 am
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      the bread makes the sandwich for sure!! So tasty!

  • September 19, 2019 at 8:47 pm
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    When I first started reading this, I was skeptical about how good a sandwich could really be. But once you started describing it, omg now I want one! That signature sandwich sounds amazing and has all of my favorite things on it. I’m definitely stopping by next time I’m in Detroit.

    • September 20, 2019 at 8:07 am
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      LOL!! Just I was skeptical. It is worth it!!

  • September 19, 2019 at 9:09 pm
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    Man, sandwiches are my FAVORITE thing, so this is right up my alley! That sandwich looked SO. GOOD. I wanted to come through the screen and take a bite.

    • September 20, 2019 at 8:11 am
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      Check out their Facebook page for when they open up shipping. If you love sandwiches, this is a must try!!

  • September 19, 2019 at 9:42 pm
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    Nothing makes me happier than people posting about Detroit! I so glad it was so positive and I am so going to go eat there!!!

    • September 20, 2019 at 8:33 am
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      There’s not enough out there on the great things Detroit has to offer. Stay tuned, I have lots more coming!!

  • September 19, 2019 at 11:52 pm
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    Yum it all looks delicious! Great back story!

  • September 20, 2019 at 12:04 am
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    These sandwiches look amazing! Now I’m hungry. 🙂 Love the story behind the restaurant!

    • September 20, 2019 at 8:42 am
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      They are amazing!! I was happy to learn their story and how involved they are in the community!

  • September 20, 2019 at 3:04 am
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    The deli slice sounds amazing. I’m dying for a great sandwich as I’m in SE Asia currently and haven’t had a good one in ages. I love supporting small businesses and this sounds like a great one

    • September 20, 2019 at 8:44 am
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      We love supporting small business too!! Hope you get a sandwich soon!!

  • September 20, 2019 at 8:56 am
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    I neeeeed one of these sandwiches! Looks amazing, thanks for sharing!!

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:15 pm
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      I need one too!! Happily going back in October!!

  • September 20, 2019 at 11:08 am
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    Looks delicious. Now I’m hungry!

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:15 pm
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      Makes me hungry every time I look at pictures too!

  • September 20, 2019 at 1:56 pm
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    Omg, just when I started my diet…I’ll start it after I visit this deli.

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:16 pm
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      Worth going off diet for!!

  • September 20, 2019 at 4:31 pm
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    When it comes to sandwiches, the bread makes all the difference. These look super yummy!

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:16 pm
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      I agree!! And this bread is the bomb!!

  • September 20, 2019 at 7:36 pm
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    I love all of your tips! Great pics too!

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:16 pm
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      Happy to help!!

  • September 20, 2019 at 10:59 pm
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    So cool they have been around since 1963…they must be doing something right! And your experience proves it.

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:17 pm
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      They sure are doing many things right!!

  • September 21, 2019 at 10:34 am
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    Oh my, this sandwich looks awesome! I love to hear why and how an establishment started and the stories of the people. Thank you for sharing, when we head to Detroit in the future we will have to stop in!

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:17 pm
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      Same here. It makes a place that much more special to visit!

  • September 22, 2019 at 9:22 am
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    It looks like a great place. I am normally not a sandwich eater, but I can be swayed by something that looks this good. LOL.

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:19 pm
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      Same here! I was skeptical, but was happy I decided to try it!

  • September 22, 2019 at 1:38 pm
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    I love a good sandwich. Your photos of the food made my mouth water. YUM

    • September 27, 2019 at 5:19 pm
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      You would love this sandwich!

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