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Great sandwiches in Tokyo

l
lost squirrel Oct 16, 2007 08:59 PM

I'm looking for a discussion on good sandwiches available in the greater Tokyo area.
Japanese style, French style, anything goes.

I'll start with the chain bakery Paul.
Some of their stuff is really good.

I'm a fan of the Charcuterie sandwich. The cornichons are a nice touch and the bread itself has great character.

The Ancien series is nice as well, the tuna salad matches well with the bread.

I recently tried one whose name escapes me, it was the vegetarian-ish sandwich with egg salad, hard boiled eggs and perhaps tomatoes. I added sliced pepperoni and enjoyed it much more.

Who else likes Paul? Other recommendations?

  1. l
    lost squirrel Oct 16, 2007 09:00 PM

    As far as burgers go, I really liked the Bacon Bleu Burger at the Park Hyatt Delicatessen

     
    1 Reply
    1. re: lost squirrel
      l
      lost squirrel Oct 16, 2007 09:02 PM

      Here is a tuna and smoked salmon sando from Kobeya Kitchen. I'm not sure if this is still sold or not, lots of their things have very limited runs.

       
    2. o
      Orchid64 Oct 16, 2007 09:50 PM

      Most sandwiches in Tokyo are pretty anemic. They are generally made on white bread and top-loaded with mayonnaise. While there are many excellent bakeries that carry various sandwiches, they tend to be very low on protein content and high on cheaper ingredients. The bread from such places is usually lovely but that isn't enough to make a great sandwich IMO.

      The "best" sandwiches (based on what you tend to favor) are from Kua'aina though they are very pricey.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Orchid64
        l
        lost squirrel Oct 16, 2007 10:54 PM

        Ku'aina is good, I agree. Also in that vein would be Wolfgang Puck Express.

        I wonder if anyone's selling a Philly Cheese Steak or an Italian Hoagie anywhere.. doubtful though :(

        1. re: lost squirrel
          j
          jicamasama Nov 21, 2007 08:47 PM

          there is a philly cheese steak stand across from the Franc Franc outlet in the gotemba premium outlets, or whatever it's called, just off the Tomei at the gotemba exit. certainly wouldn't make a trip there just for the cheese steak, but it is in fact there and has been since the place opened. the hot dog is not too bad from the same stand.
          dg
          oh yeah, it is not expensive
          YTMV

          1. re: jicamasama
            j
            jicamasama Nov 23, 2007 09:38 PM

            Nathan's hotdogs in Shiodome also claims to make a cheese steak
            dg

      2. steamer Oct 17, 2007 01:26 AM

        Viron in Shibuya has excellent French style sandwiches. Not cheap, but the bread is probably the best in Tokyo, better than many bakeries in Paris.

        For burgers I like kui aina they do a real turkey sand but somehow I always crave a burger when I go there. For an Aussie style burger Brozzers in ningyocho is pretty good.

        I really hate those Japanese style sandos with almost no filling on bad white bread, but somehow the maisen tonkatsu sandwich on tonkatsu-sauce sodden crustless white bread is a guilty pleasure.

        Still mourning the loss of pret a manger and their crawfish sandwich.

        Can't imagine a US style Italian deli sand in Japan, the amount of meat and cheese they use would make it cost 5,000 plus yen.

        8 Replies
        1. re: steamer
          l
          lost squirrel Oct 17, 2007 03:52 AM

          [quote] but somehow the maisen tonkatsu sandwich on tonkatsu-sauce sodden crustless white bread is a guilty pleasure. [/quote]

          I completely understand. At that point, it's not really a sandwich anymore. It's just tonkatsu with an edible wrapper.

          As for the italian subs and cheese steaks, I agree as well. It is very cost prohibitive. Lately I've been making my own, its marginally cheaper than a good meal out.

           
           
          1. re: lost squirrel
            Silverjay Oct 17, 2007 04:59 AM

            There used to be a "NY style deli" in Kannai, Yokohama run by a Jewish guy from New York. But that was years ago. I like the chicken teriyaki at Freshness Burger, which is their best sammy I think.

            I've NEVER seen Italian subs or cheese steaks in Japan. Though, outside Yokosuka base there may be some places that serve them. I know there used to be a taco joint there.

            1. re: Silverjay
              Silverjay Oct 17, 2007 05:19 PM

              Pretty good list of places on Bento actually- http://www.bento.com/r-sand.html . Looks like there is a Jewish deli again. It's in Shirokane. On the deli theme, it also says that West Park Cafe has bagels from H&H in NY. Go figure. I guess they can't import Philly cheesesteaks and muffalettas from N'Orleans....

          2. re: steamer
            l
            lost squirrel Oct 17, 2007 03:55 AM

            Searching for Viron's address, I came up with this link:

            http://www.travellady.com/Issues/Marc...

            Some other good advice for the bread section of a sandwich at least.

            1. re: steamer
              Debbie M Oct 18, 2007 07:21 PM

              I would second Viron, and I've also had some excellent sandwiches from the boulangerie/take out section of the Roppongi Hills Joel Robuchon.

              But I do have to confess to a fondness for convenience store egg salad sandwiches. Unless they have lettuce in them. Then they're just gross.

              Is Benugo at Ebisu Garden Palace any good? There used to be one at Shiodome, too, but it was gone last time I was there.

              1. re: Debbie M
                l
                lost squirrel Oct 18, 2007 08:08 PM

                Eeww, the egg salad kills me.

                The tuna salad from 7-11 on the hand is always a good bet though.

                1. re: lost squirrel
                  Debbie M Oct 19, 2007 12:42 PM

                  Well, good. That means there should be at least one triangular egg salad sando left when I stop by 7-11 before I head back to the ryokan for the night!

                2. re: Debbie M
                  kamiosaki Oct 20, 2007 07:18 AM

                  I wouldn't say it's worth a special trip, but Benugo has a good reputation with many people who work in YGP.

              2. t
                taryn Oct 17, 2007 06:50 PM

                Has anyone tried this place? mmm patty melts and roast turkey!

                http://www.cravings.jp/menu.htm

                I had a very nice curried tuna on pumpernickle sammy from some shop in the keio mall walkway in the Shinjuku station. I don't know they name of the shop, but I always put a little curry in my tuna now.

                Also curious, has anyone tried firehouse? I've been meaning to check it out for awhile, but still haven't had the chance.

                http://www.firehouse.co.jp/menu.html

                2 Replies
                1. re: taryn
                  steamer Oct 17, 2007 07:36 PM

                  Never been to cravings but sounds good. As for Firehouse, they used to have them deliver to my old office when meetings ran through lunch, a very good burger.

                  1. re: taryn
                    Robb S Oct 20, 2007 11:19 PM

                    I had heard about Cravings but then I noticed they got some fairly negative feedback on some Japanese boards.

                  2. c
                    curiousgeo Oct 19, 2007 06:06 PM

                    I remember seeing an episode of the show Dotchi, and they featured a delicious looking tonkatsu sandwich. Anyone know of a shop in Tokyo that makes a particularly good one? The ones featured on the show were mouthwatering, good bread, crispy and juicy katsu, shredded cabbage and katsu sauce. Thanks.

                    1. Robb S Oct 20, 2007 11:14 PM

                      The shrimp avocado sandwich at Homeworks is one of my favorites, but generally Homeworks does pretty well with regard to price performance. I'll also second Viron and Paul for decent French-style sandwiches.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Robb S
                        u
                        Uncle Yabai Jun 20, 2008 03:04 AM

                        Chicken Salada sando, graham tosto, m-size fries, iced tea, for me. Great sando there. Paul, Viron, Maison Kaiser, all make a great sandwich to go.

                        Cravings is pretty good for catering, it is owned by a friend and college classmate of my wife's.

                        Katsu-sando (from Maisen or from anywhere else) I consider an abomination. The concept of the chewy part outside and the crispy part inside is just plain wrong. And, if you're going to make a sando out of Tonkatsu, why pick one of the most heinous inventions from the white man, the white bread? Put it between a nice french bread, a dash of wasabi mustard and some maisen tonkatsu sauce, and now you're talking.

                      2. Robb S Oct 20, 2007 11:25 PM

                        And speaking of sandwiches, Quiznos is making a second try at the Japanese market, with a different franchise partner. They have a Tokyo branch in Ginza 3-chome, and another at a Yokohama shopping mall.

                        6 Replies
                        1. re: Robb S
                          Silverjay Oct 21, 2007 08:33 AM

                          I swear they used to have a branch in Otemachi under one of the office buildings. I guess that was their first foray..?.

                          1. re: Silverjay
                            Robb S Oct 21, 2007 10:01 AM

                            Yes, there was a branch in the Shin-Otemachi Building from November 1999 through July 2005, under the former franchise partner.

                            The new partner, Higa Industries, is owned by a Hawaiian-born Japanese-American, and they also manage Domino's Pizza in Japan.

                            At least according to Wikipedia Japan, which seems to have nearly the same obsessive level of trivial detail as the English-language version.

                            1. re: Robb S
                              Debbie M Oct 21, 2007 08:40 PM

                              Hasn't there been a Quiznos just outside of Yurakucho station for a couple of years?

                              1. re: Debbie M
                                Robb S Oct 21, 2007 09:54 PM

                                That one is gone now, but the new branch is only a few blocks away.

                          2. re: Robb S
                            l
                            lost squirrel Oct 21, 2007 06:31 PM

                            I've never been a fan of Quizno's but I'm willing to give 'em another try.

                            I'm more excited about the fact that the Cheesecake Factory is coming to Japan (or so I've heard). I know they've begun printing a Japanese menu for the Hawaiian locations, now if they'd just move one over here I'd be happy.

                            1. re: lost squirrel
                              Robb S Oct 21, 2007 10:36 PM

                              I wonder if they'll have to change their name for the Japanese market. There's already a pretty popular (30-branch) chain of shops called "Cheese Cake Factory." They sell cheesecake.

                          3. m
                            masissoyo Jun 23, 2008 09:24 PM

                            I know it may sound odd, but heading to Subway isn't a bad idea. They do shrimp-avocado sandwiches(ebiavo) with wasabi-flavoured soy sauce dressing-the dressing is the key. It's really good.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: masissoyo
                              l
                              lost squirrel Jun 23, 2008 10:30 PM

                              Good call, many of the locations started toasting the subs as well if you ask for it. Roast beef with mustard, mayo and the jalapenos isn't half bad toasted.

                            2. p
                              prasantrin Jun 24, 2008 03:23 PM

                              For French-style sandwiches, I'm a huge fan of Burdigala. Their croque monsieur is one of the best I've ever had (and their lunch special--croque, salad, tiny dessert, and a beverage is an excellent deal).

                              1. kamiosaki Jun 26, 2008 04:12 AM

                                I'm suprised no one has mentioned Baker Bounce yet. More so after I remembered that this is a 9-month-old thread.

                                Also there's a little hole in the wall place near where I live in Kami Osaki called HOBS. The sandwiches, while good, are probably not quite the equal of some of the top places mentioned so far, but they are overstuffed and perhaps 1/2-2/3 the price of what you would expect to pay for that size, for that area. A large ebi tonkatsu + cabbetsu on a roll (large as in bigger than my fist) is maybe 280 yen, and they rotate between different 10-15 types (occasionally even PB+J) - across from the Softbank shop just north of Meguro Station, on the west side.

                                1. e
                                  ehenning Jul 5, 2008 01:46 AM

                                  I would recommend Pantry in Roppongi Hills Metro Hat. Great sandwiches and burgers. They are owned by the same company as Homeworks, which also does great burgers.

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