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Celebrated SoMa deli hit by break-in, outspoken owner vows quick reopening

Adam Mesnick started his Thursday morning in typical fashion, with a cup of coffee in hand, he unlocked and entered the back door to his SoMa sandwich shop Deli Board.

But when he walked over to the front of his store at 1058 Folsom St. he realized that the day would be anything but normal. The metal gate was wrenched open, one of his front windows was smashed and a number of items were missing including five laptops, a record player and his Square point of sale system and cash register.

“I was stunned and shocked,” Mesnick said. “It’s violating, it’s unsettling and I know if there’s no computer there I’m not opening up my business for the day. But moreover, I have a very small group of employees and it hits them as hard as it hits me, if not more so.”

Based on security camera footage, Mesnick said his store was hit by two hooded and disguised individuals who broke in and took the items in what he believes was a random attack. He filed a police report and said he’s been in contact with law enforcement to provide them with video footage and additional evidence.

After Mesnick tweeted about his store’s break-in from his popular and controversial @bettersoma account, a GoFundMe was started to help defray some of the costs to his business. In just a few hours, the fund racked up more than $10,000, doubling the initial $5,000 goal.

“C’mon that’s insane,” Mesnick said when told about the fundraising total. “I don't know what to say, it's tremendous. And I mean, I'm gushing and blushing.”

Mesnick started the sandwich shop in 2009 and has operated at the current location for more than a decade. He’s seen occasional issues with vandalism or someone nabbing the tip jar, but this is the first time that his store was actually broken into and burglarized.

“It’s now like you’re a statistic, it’s almost like a right of passage, which is not the right attitude,” Mesnick said.

Ironically, Mesnick said he was at a community meeting on Tuesday evening with fellow business owners and the West SoMa Community Benefits District to talk about the issue of safety in the neighborhood.

Deli Board will be back up and running tomorrow, Mesnick said, with help from the community and fellow restaurateurs who have donated spare equipment. The GoFundMe proceeds will be divided evenly amongst his staff to help make up for a day of missed work.

Kevin Truong can be reached at