I've always considered myself somewhat of a sandwich connoisseur (bread and cheese are my 2 favorite foods; look out 45 year old version of me). When I build a sandwich at home, I meticulously place every ingredient so that every bite has a little bit of everything, and I always make sure that the sandwich won't fall apart or do the "squeezeout" (that horrible moment when the soul of a sandwich falls out the backside when you take a bite).
So, through my adventures in NYC, I came across numerous sandwiches that absolutely blew me away, but 10 stood out. I realize that this list is HIGHLY controversial, but in my experience, these sandwiches were the tastiest and the most consistent.
Okay, enough chit-chat. Here we go...
10. Hill Country Club - Hill Country Chicken
A classic Chick-Fil-A sandwich on steroids: a perfectly grilled, buttered bun with an unbelievably moist fried chicken breast filet topped with two slices of crispy applewood smoked bacon, fresh sliced avocado, and a thick, refreshing slice of vine-ripened tomato that compliments the richness of their homemade buttermilk ranch dressing perfectly
9. Lox Deluxe - Thompkins Square Bagels
The best bagel I've ever had in my life. This quickly became my go-to neighborhood breakfast place. These bagels are more like cake than a bagel. If you can catch one that just came out of the oven, be ready for the ride of your life. The lox deluxe has everything you could possibly want. Just pick your favorite cream cheese or tofu spread (i'd highly recommend their veggie tofu), and they'll take care of the rest. After a few minutes, you'll be presented with a warm, fresh bagel with a heaping pile of spread, fresh lox, tomatoes, red onions and capers. What else could you ask for on a Sunday morning?
8. The Almighty Brisket - JoeDough Sandwich Shop
The fact that this shop was just a 4 minute walk from my apartment made this place extremely dangerous. This incredible, "melt-in-your-mouth" brisket sandwich absolutely blew my mind. Let's start with the bun. It's the absolute freshest, toastiest brioche bun you've ever felt in your life. Your knees will buckle as soon as you pick it up. Before you even bite into it, you'll stare at it in amazement as it glistens in the sunlight. It's light, airy, and oh so tasty. As you bite into this guy, the tang of the horseradish mayo and the sharp, melty cheddar hits you quickly then your teeth slide through the brisket like a hot knife through butter. Say goodbye to the days of stringy brisket pieces hanging off each bite. You could cut this sandwich with a spoon.
7. IL VIP Panini - Sergimmo Salumeria
This thing is like the godfather of italian heroes. I've never encountered anything like this before in my life. I really didn't know what to expect when I walked into a ghostly salumeria, but I went for it anyway. I was in for a surprise. Homemade italian bread with a healthy pile of amazing prosciutto di parma, three monster slices of fresh mozzarella, some fresh arugula, extra virgin olive oil, and.......wait for it......FIG SPREAD. The combination of these italian staples makes for an incredible experience. The slight bitterness of the arugula, the milkiness of the mozzarella, the buttery flavor of the prosciutto, and the heavenly sweetness of the fig spread makes this sandwich the biggest party your mouth has ever seen.
I was literally flabbergasted after every bite of this sandwich. I couldn't believe how this hot, delicious, melty chicken sandwich could even exist....but after every bite, I was reminded that I wasn't dreaming. These guys have perfected the grilled cheese, so it's no wonder that the sourdough bread and pepperjack cheese were absolutely perfect, but the precision that was used to create the buttermilk fried chicken, creamy red cabbage slaw, and the "special melt sauce," really had me groaning to a near obnoxious level. My friend literally had to lean over and say "Dude, relax." because we were getting weird looks. If you're in NY, give this guy a try and see how many bites you can get through without letting out a groan or two.
5. Grey Dog Club - Grey Dog
The best club sandwich I've ever had. There are three key components here that elevate this sandwich to legendary status: the fresh sliced turkey, homemade honey mustard, and the challah (not pictured). The melted swiss, bacon, lettuce, and plum tomatoes definitely help, but the warmth of the fresh turkey, perfect tang of the honey mustard, and the crunchy, yet pillowy toasted challah makes this sandwich want me to be a part of the club for an eternity. The Grey Dog also seems to attract some of the hottest girls in the city during lunch hour, so now you've got two reasons to go.
3. Hot Roast Beef Hero - Defonte's of Brooklyn
2. Lobster Roll - Luke's Lobster
This sandwich is heaven on a roll. It's a warm, fresh, toasty, buttery bun, filled to the brim with fresh, premium, hand-pulled, gigantic, in-tact chunks of lobster (it's not rare to see a full claw) drizzled with butter and sprinkled with Luke's homemade spices. To me, this sandwich is the mecca of all lobster rolls, so next time you're in NYC, make sure you get to Luke's!
1. Coconut Tiger Shrimp Bahn Mi - Num Pang
Disclaimer: I did not eat every sandwich in NY, so if you've got one that you think should be on the list, comment below!