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The Real Deli owners, Charlie Mattouk and Alicia Matos, serve up chowder at the Festival of Whales in March. Photo by Andrea Papagianis
The Real Deli owners, Charlie Mattouk and Alicia Matos, serve up chowder at the Festival of Whales in March. Photo by Andrea Papagianis

Compiled by Robert Sedita, Management Analyst, Dana Point Community Development

The Real Deli, located at 34320 E. Pacific Coast Highway, has been serving Dana Point and south Orange County top-notch sandwiches and desserts for two years.

Owners Alicia Matos and Charlie Mattouk moved cross country from Florida to be nearer to family and decided on career changes, from a real estate agent and special education teacher, respectively. Once here, the pair fell in love with the city.

Matos and Mattock took over a vacant space in Doheny Park Plaza. The pair made it their own and built The Real Deli on quality, freshness and great service. They obtain their ingredients from local farmers markets, make their own sauces, pesto, pasta and potato salads, and bake their own gluten-free bread, with other fresh breads coming from local bakeries.

Additionally, the pair smokes their own meats, such as ham, pork, brisket, prime rib, turkey and pastrami. The Real Deli also offers an array of desserts including homemade cannoli, tiramisu, cakes and cheesecake, which is cooked on their wood burning smoker. Recently, Matos and Mattock have expanded their operation into event catering.

Many customers love the food, and Alicia and Charlie’s company, so much they often ask them to stay and join the party. Their quality food and service keeps people coming back for more.

In additional to the great service Matos and Mattock provide customers, they are also community oriented and love giving back. They have sponsored a Harbor clean-up day, where they provided food to participants. They have also sponsored Fish for Life and provided food to the special needs children and volunteers who went out fishing for the day.

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