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Jan 4, 2008 02:45 PM

"Grinder" sandwiches?

Are there any east coast style grinder sandwich shops in the L.A. area? (no mayo, dressed with OO, etc.) Any not-to-miss?

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  1. Not sure if this is exactly the same question, but I think you'll find a lot of relevant info here:

    6 Replies
    1. re: wutzizname

      wow--thanks, this was a great link.

      I was told 'Grinders' are from Connecticut. But it seems the same type of sandwich--meats, cheeses, vinegriette, hard roll--just have differnet names. subs, heroes, hoagies, etc.

      Gonna try one this week!

      1. re: toodie jane

        My pleasure. By the way, since first posting that question I've tried two of the recs. Monte Carlo in Burbank which I found to be just okay. And A-1 down in San Pedro which was pretty spectacular. Wasn't exactly what I was looking for in terms of volume and construction (I'm increasingly convinced that the sandwich I grew up on may have been an anomaly found only at the incomparable Casa Del Sol in Woodcliff Lake, NJ) but a damn tasty version nonetheless. A bit of a hike from LA proper, but definitely worth the trip. And they have of ton of other great Italian provisions to pick up while you're there.


        N.B. There's no place to sit down at A-1. I ate mine in my car, up the street, overlooking the Bay.

        1. re: wutzizname

          plenty of nice spots down by Cabrillo beach or 22nd street for after A1.
          We have been big on their eggplant parm and the mortadella or torpedo sandwich. for about $5.50 it is great and a full footer.
          They have various other sandwiches including a veggie, that I see lots a folks ordering. the sausage is OK...I prefer the eggplant.

          1. re: wutzizname

            Glad you enjoyed the Itorpedo at A-1 Market in San Pedro. It's not packed mile-high with meat, but very tasty nonetheless and the market itself is a great resource for Italian goods. For hot Italian sandwiches in San Pedro, I like the meatball and sausage sandwiches at Big Nick's on Gaffey

            BTW, San Pedro is actually part of the City of Los Angeles proper:

            1. re: Ernie

              My apologies to the good people of San Pedro. I guess I meant L.A. North.

              P.S. Actually brought a Big Nick's Sausage and Meatball combo home with me for dinner after eating my A-1 Torpedo for lunch that day. Good stuff.

              1. re: wutzizname

                Or perhaps, LA South, (unless you live on Catalina). ;-D

      2. My husband is from Philly and we have the same problem. He is always trying to find a sandwich shop that will let him use their grill and show them how its done, but no takers yet (he used to work a grill in PA). Based on wutzizname's advice, we're going to try Grillin-n-Chillin in Eagle Rock, we're close, so we'll probably get to that soon. But the closest we've found to good sandwiches and hoaiges is not at all close - is Delia's in Riverside, near the UCR campus. Its been there forever and unless you go to UCR, there's really no other reason to go to Riverside.

        3 Replies
        1. re: kchangambrose

          WOW!!!! Delia's Grinder is still there??? I went to UCR in the 60's and it was a regular stop for me and my roommates.

          I don't know that I'd agree that there's NO other reason to go to Riverside. The Mission Inn is pretty nice. Otherwise it's pretty much like most of the Inland Empire cities though. I'm sure the local residents would probably disagree.

          1. re: Midlife

            Not only is Delia's still there, it's STILL PACKED. No offense intended to any IE'ers. My uncle used to be a physics prof @ UCR (tho not in the 60's) and my brother went there, and actually, my cousin had a lovely wedding at the Mission Inn, so you are quite right. I rescind my last statement. My uncle would have said that Delia's wasn't as good as it used to be - as a kid we would have picnics on the UCR campus - but we ate there about 3 months ago, and I still loved the turkey sandwiches. My husband liked the cheeseburger hoagie, tho the guy behind the counter did say he was the only person who had ever ordered a large one. It was 2 meals large.

            1. re: kchangambrose

              I moved from Pasadena to IE 7 yrs ago and yes Delia's Grinders is one of the FEW hidden gems out here in IE but is really unique to all of LA too!
              I was there on xmas eve and it was packed.
              Connal's is nowhere even close to what Delia's is and I used to frequent Connals for 20+ yrs.
              The Great Steak and Hoagie Place, next to the 101 fwy on Main St. in Ventura has the best Philly Cheese Steak I have ever had great fries too

        2. Lee's Hoagie House, Luigi Ortega's & Connal's, all in Pasadena, satisfy my itch anytime I have a hankering for that kind of thing, which I practically lived on while going to school in Philadelphia. Connal's actually calls their sandwiches "grinders."

          LO's uses Amoroso rolls from Philly. Lee's has a locally-baked bread, but it's excellent. both places get their foodstuffs from back east. Connal's is not at the same level as the first two, but makes up for it with excellent fries & onion rings, and a plethora of shakes, malts & flavored sodas.

          1505 E Washington Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104

          Lee's Hoagie House
          2269 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91107

          Luigi Ortega's
          1655 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91106

          5 Replies
          1. re: Jack Flash

            LO has great fries. I have to try Lee's. At the moment, my buddies and I are going to Fredo's up on Lake, since it's walking distance from their house.

            1. re: SauceSupreme

              now any places like those but in the south bay area?

              1. re: AGENT FOODIE

                I haven't been to Big Mike's in a while, but they offer a pretty good Philly there. I imagine their subs are good, too, but I've never ordered. Here's a pretty good pic:


                I've only ever been to the El Segundo location, but I guess they've got a Hermosa location also.

                1. re: SauceSupreme

                  Is the Papa Jake's philly cheesesteak sandwich place still there on Rosecrans in Manhattan Beach still there? It's near the El Tarasco on Rosecrans/Highland Avenue. They had a pretty good version, but I haven't eaten there in a while. For some reason, I've never eaten at Big Mike's in El Segundo. A local told me he thought their bread was better than Rinaldi's down the block, but otherwise the Rinaldi's sandwich was much better. They do make a good and generously portioned (meats and such) sandwich with a ton of different fixings. Not much like the op originally requested though. I do like the few sandwiches I got a Campanelli's Deli on Sepulveda/9th Street (northwest corner strip mall). It sounds closer to what the op wanted.

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