Corned Beef King to Debut Picnic-Style Pop-Up in Bethesda

Reubens and plenty of pastrami at a former gas station lot.

By: Anna Spiegel

The days of tracking the Corned Beef King food truck around Montgomery County for a pastrami fix are near over. Owner Jon Rossler tells us that starting Tuesday, July 30, you’ll find him serving sandwiches at a temporary operation he’s set up in the former BP station lot at 7725 Old Georgetown Road, just blocks from the Bethesda Metro stop. A large development is eventually slated for the address, but in the meantime, you’ll find picnic tables, music, and hefty corned beef sandwiches.

We first encountered the King’s coach when it started cruising around Maryland in 2011. Since then Rossler—whose family owned Celebrity Delly in Rockville and Cabin John*—has also started serving his oversize sandwiches out of a Georgia Avenue Exxon station in Olney*. The upcoming location will be a mix of the truck and brick-and-mortar operations; plans for Bethesda are more like a pop-up picnic party. Rossler says he’ll hang outdoor lights around the lot, play music, and equip the area with large picnic tables for about 18 guests. The truck, parked on the premises, will run its regular menu of sandwiches: think classic corned beef and pastrami piled high, Reubens (veggie or meat), plus specials such as fresh roast turkey au jus and brisket steak and cheese with sautéed onions, peppers, and spicy Thousand Island.

The operation is set to run Tuesday through Sunday 11 to 9. The King is also planning on delegating food runners to bring carryout orders to nearby homes and businesses (with a $25 order minimum). Rossler is unsure of the next step after the outdoor location closes, but is ready to open another shop should the opportunity become available. Meat-loving investors, get your wallets ready.

*This post has been updated from a previous version.