“You sure you don’t want to try the hot turkey?”

Arguello sign

As much as I love sandwiches, I didn’t seek out too many sub shops or delis while in San Francisco, as there were plenty of other cuisines to try.

However, I think it speaks for itself that I made three trips, for four sandwiches, to the Arguello Market and Café. Even though it was located just around the corner from where I was staying, the pure volume of visits should be enough to sing my praises for their sandwiches

On my first two trips, I went for a classic and one of my all-time favorites- chicken salad. However, I had to do this against the recommendation of the “sandwich artist” to try their renowned hot rotisserie chicken or turkey.

The one staple throughout all of my sandwiches was the bread. Each time, I went with a delicious, thick, and soft French sourdough loaf. However, when I make it back there, I may try something called a “dutch crunch” roll (which I saw several patrons order on each of my visits). The chicken salad included a great balance of solid chunks of white meat chicken, mayo, and a nice addition of chopped green and red peppers. As usual, I kept my chicken salad pretty simple, just adding lettuce, onion, and a little vinegar (interestingly, their default was red wine vinegar as opposed to balsamic, but added essentially the same taste).

Arguello bag

My last trip came on my way to catching my flight home to Boston. Given that I hate buying food at airports or on airplanes, I doubled up my order.

To start, I went with a bacon and egg sandwich on a delicious and buttery warm croissant. For lunch, I finally tried the highly touted hot rotisserie turkey. For toppings, I stayed away from the recommended “everything,” and just went with some bacon, lettuce, tomato, and mayo. Unfortunately, my only complaint was entirely my fault, I waited to eat the sandwich until I got to the airport and by that time it had already cooled off. Regardless, the meat was delicious, along with the bread and toppings as usual.

Hot turkey

Next time I’m in the Richmond, I’ll certainly need to try one fresh, while it is still warm.

“We all live in a…” – The Beatles

When I asked my friend (and San Francisco host for the week) where to get a sandwich, he claimed without hesitation that ‘Yellow Submarine,’ in the Inner Sunset, was not only the best sub he’d had in San Francisco, but the best sub he’d ever had period.

Yellow submarine 2

His only other sub-par recommendation came on Art’s Cafe, but since I knew that this was based on his being partial to a good value and that he held on to the same desperate hope as I did that we may finally have found a Yankee Doodle competitor, I gave him the benefit of the doubt.

By about 11:00am, I had to decide whether to go for breakfast or lunch on my last full day of exploring SF, and given that I really only wanted out of breakfast was steak and eggs, I figured I could go without the eggs.

That decision made my sandwich choice for me, steak and cheese; however, I still liked their very limited menu(only basic sandwiches). Interestingly, for the latter portion of my time spent living in Philadelphia, I gave up the “cheese,” part of the Philly-famous cheesesteaks. However, whenever I would find myself at one of the two classics in the city of Brotherly Love (Pats or Geno’s) or my favorite, Jims on South Street (usually when hosting friends or family), I’d still grab a plain steak. However, I’ve recently gone back to adding some provolone back into my sandwich topping arsenal. Therefore, at the Yellow Submarine, I ordered what would be known as “One provolone wit’ “(meaning a steak and provolone sandwich topped with onions) back east.

After applying a healthy dose of ketchup, I took my first bite and couldn’t have been happier with my friend’s recommendation or my order choice. The steak was nicely shaved (not finely chopped like they do at Jim’s, but still great), the onions well-cooked, and the bread perfectly grilled.

steakcheese

 

My only slight improvement might be to cook the cheese a little longer. While it was warm, it didn’t quite melt to my liking. Like I said, I haven’t had a true Philly Cheesesteak in quite some time, but I’d be willing to bet that if these two were stacked up, they’d go down to the wire.

Back in Cambridge, my new favorite sub place has become Al’s (I frequent the Harvard Square location, but they’ve got a few throughout the city). When there, I mostly go for the award-winning chicken or tuna salad subs, served on Al’s unnecessarily large, but delicious, sub rolls. I’ve had a steak sub there once and it was very similar to the one from the Yellow Submarine. I’d have to call it a 50/50 toss up, perhaps with the sandwich meat and toppings going to Al’s and the bread going to YS, but all in all a great contest.

Even though the menu was limited, there were plenty of others I’d like to try and it will certainly make it on to my list for a repeat visit on my next trip back there (which will hopefully be sooner rather than later…)