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May 6, 2008 07:21 AM

california sandwiches

i finally had time to check out there eggplant sandwich!! I went to their location on dufferin street, north of eglinton at noon one day last week. Naturally there was a line up but it moved quickly and boy, was it worth the wait.
I was in heaven. I loved the bun, the sauce, the eggplant (I added cheese) and will be returning!! (hopefully when there is no lineup.
I read somewhere, that not all "california sandwiches" are the same..meaning, some locations are better run than others. True?

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  1. My belief is that they are not all created equal. Or at least, run equally.
    I find that the original downtown is the best by far.
    I work with a guy who swears the one on The Queensway is the best.
    So there does seem to be a discrepancy.


    1. I've only eaten at the Sheppard/Chesswood and Winston Churchill locations, no noticeable differences to me. I should mention I've only ordered the veal or chicken, I've never tried the eggplant.

      Unless the shop is run like a major fast-food chain (e.g. all ingredients sourced from a central location and cooking specs are down to a science), I doubt each location would taste "identical". I like the joint, does the job for me when I need it.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Apprentice

        Their veal is like shoe leather.

        never going back

        1. re: Franchise

          Try the Claremont (original) location.

          1. re: mrbozo

            California Sanwiches, including the original on Claremont, is coasting on its reputation of many years ago (at least 15 years). Their quality of meat is cheap, cheap, cheap and the only redeeming quality that many probably like about it is that it is freshly fried and then eaten - that is what differentiates itself from many veal places where the veal sits for a long period of time in the sauce so that you do not get that freshly fried crunch.

            1. re: Pizza Lover

              We're talking about a $10 veal sandwhich, that's pretty get what you pay for. I'm sure I can get a better quality sandwhich somewhere else in the city and I'm sure Noce, Il Mulino, Mistura, Via Allegro etc can all produce better sandwiches at fifty-percent to double the price.

              Is it worth the drive to Acton? No. However, when I happen to be in the Mississauga/Oakville borders or by Chesswood and crave a sandwhich, it suits me well. For others it may or may not.

              1. re: Pizza Lover

                The differentiation alone is worth the order. Besides, why would so many paisans line up for some if it was crap? Try their chicken or veggie sandwiches (at Claremount), finger lickin' good.

                BTW, Vinnie's on Dupont near Christie also makes a killer sandwich.

                1. re: mrbozo

                  Anything freshly fried and eaten on the spot is quite tasty - totally agree. However that doesn't take away from the fact that the veal itself - which is what you are supposed to be enjoying when you pay for a veal sandwich - is the cheapest of the cheapest variety and even at $10 (which is not a bargain price) as a customer you deserve something better than what California delivers. And that's why I stopped going there.

                  As for the paisans, I've seen them line up for worse.

        2. I've been to a few of them, but not the original. The Dufferin/Glencairn one is the one I used to visit the most. I thought the veal sandwiches there were pretty darn good but the staff were rude rude rude rude rude so and sos. Plus they did not have debit machines. So I don't frequent it anymore. There's better sandwich places out there who deserve the business.

          1. The one in Brampton on Dixie road has served me veal remeniscent of, well, shoe leather indeed

            I mean seriously, the kind of sandwich you bite into and have to gnaw at it like a dog just to get the meat to tear.. Maybe they left too much fat in the meat or something, I have no idea

            For this reason, I rarely buy the veals there anymore

            1. The original is still the best on Claremont. Hot veal with onions. Mmmm. I go to the one on Queensway a lot more. Pretty consistent always busy, better to avoid the noon to 1:00 window. Tried the Dufferin location a few times, but was disappointed all times. The Queensway crowd is the nicest to deal with.

              4 Replies
              1. re: Westwardho

                I have always loved California Sandwiches and in fact have not had any better in the city thus far....I don't eat veal anymore but can tell you that the eggplant sandwiches are fabulous...I concur with you, Domestic Goddess. The eggplant parmesan at their hot table is also fabulous....layers of breaded eggplant and sauce and can you go wrong?

                My colleagues eat there often and no one has ever had a problem with the service...perhaps it was an off day.

                For those of you who are interested, the Dufferin location is moving to a new building just south of where they are now, across from that lighting store which ironically always seems dark....

                1. re: zengirl18

                  Hmmm, must keep an eye on that darkling store.

                2. re: Westwardho

                  Dufferin/St Clair location shut down a while ago and has been replaced by Miami Sandwiches. No idea how they are. Anyone?

                  1. re: mrbozo

                    Decent enough, but essentially forgettable. A fine enough option if you live in the area. I did not know it was formerly a California Sandwiches.