HOME > Chowhound > Washington DC & Baltimore >
Are you making a specialty food? Share your adventure

Where Has The Real Ham Gone??

Sean D Mar 2, 2009 01:08 PM

Hey, am I the only person out there who has noticed that it's become nearly impossible to find a real ham sandwich anywhere?? Seriously. Many of the chain sandwich shops are using turkey ham. (This includes Subway.) The rest have switched to that awful re-constructed, gelatinous, sickeningly pink ham-mystery-meat-loaf!

Its not much better at the grocery store. Most of the ham is artificial.

I'm not looking so much for some fancy Italian place where an exotic ham sandwich costs $9. I'd just like to find some place that sells a normal, reasonably priced hot or cold ham and cheese sandwich.

Any ideas??

  1. alkapal Mar 11, 2009 05:56 PM

    at the cherrydale giant today, the man behind me in the checkout line had some awesome looking ham chunks from the deli, which looked like they were just carved off of mom's sunday ham on the bone.

    i asked the guy what time was supper, but he was not a "chatty" person. ;-).

    1. chaofun Mar 6, 2009 10:07 AM

      Well the Italian store is under $9. I don't know if its too fancy... they do have non-italian ham.

      8 Replies
      1. re: chaofun
        alkapal Mar 6, 2009 04:39 PM

        the "italian store" in arlington on spout run parkway? i just looked -- as i didn't recall it -- and you're right.

        but who would get a ham and cheese at the italian store? <apparently enough people to keep it on the menu!> i want a "capri" sub with capicola. ;-).

        1. re: alkapal
          keithlb1 Mar 6, 2009 10:41 PM

          Once you've had Italian hams and cold cuts you won't be missing the American version all that much. Nothing like Italian cold cuts...Some spicy capicolla please.

          1. re: keithlb1
            hill food Mar 6, 2009 11:50 PM

            mortadella, that will be my bella morte.

            that and jamon Serrano (Iberico I wish - $$)

            1. re: hill food
              alkapal Mar 7, 2009 03:03 AM

              yep, i like the mortadella there at italian store, too. i'll get that, along with the prosciutto di parma. capacola has been a favorite for many years, but i think italian store's has a chewier "crust" than i recall at other places. is that possible, or just faulty memory?

              arrowine's jamón serrano isn't *too* $$$. get on their mailing list to be advised of specials.

              1. re: alkapal
                chaofun Mar 7, 2009 08:08 AM

                Don't get me wrong... regular ham is not something I would normally get at the Italian Store, their italian cold cuts are so good. But I was just trying to help the OP out.

                1. re: chaofun
                  alkapal Mar 7, 2009 11:12 AM

                  no, i understand, totally! ;-).

                  1. re: chaofun
                    hill food Mar 7, 2009 10:26 PM

                    and similarly serrano or prosciutto isn't too insanely (well a little/much) expensive but not like Iberico.

                    Easter. just around the corner.

                    1. re: hill food
                      alkapal Mar 8, 2009 03:49 AM

                      not "spam spam spam spam, spam spam spam spam," but "ham ham ham ham, ham ham ham ham."

                      i talked to my butcher at my beloved harris teeter and asked him when the deals were coming on ham, and was told, "very soon" (nearer easter). he said customers go crazy snapping up somethjng called a "pagan ham" -- ironically!

        2. alkapal Mar 6, 2009 04:47 AM

          i know you're looking for a prepared sandwich, but i think harris teeter has some of the best deli ham, and it is called "ham on the bone" (or ham "off" the bone?) -- anyway, it has a true ham flavor!

          maybe harris teeter can use a specific-request deli meat when they make a sandwich "to go". i'll check it out today when i go; i gotta get my carolina Q fix! ;-).

          1 Reply
          1. re: alkapal
            MsDiPesto Mar 6, 2009 09:36 AM

            Totally agree on the HT "Ham off the Bone", it's delish.

          2. ktmoomau Mar 4, 2009 10:39 AM

            Wegman's roasts their own meats for their deli counter sliced meats, they have the other stuff that to which we shall not speak, but they even have VA Ham that they roast and then slice, I haven't gotten the normal, but I found the VA ham was good, I got it sliced at the deli counter to go on biscuits.

            It would be a make your own sandwich type deal.

            We could use a good breakfast and lunch place that uses off the bone ham, the breakfast at Matt's Big Breakfast in Phoenix where they roast their own bone in and cut the meat off when ordered were just amazing. No weirdly textured cubes.

            1. m
              MrsWheatie Mar 4, 2009 07:55 AM

              The Atrium Cafe in SW bakes in house and hand carves for sammies. Same with roast beef and turkey.

              1 Reply
              1. re: MrsWheatie
                CDouglas Mar 6, 2009 07:24 AM

                The Atrium Cafe in NW at the corner of Connecticut and L (lower level) does the same. Whole roasted ham, roast beef and turkey sliced to order. They have a nice assortment of spreads and veggies to personalize your sandwich or wrap.

              2. Gonzocook Mar 4, 2009 05:25 AM

                In Arlington, I think Heidelberg Bakery on Lee Hwy would meet your criteria. A variety of real cold cuts, including some German-style ham, at a decent price (around $6, IIRC). Carry out or eat there. Good potato salad, etc. to go with it.

                And the bread is fresh, of course.

                In the district, try Litteri's. Italian, but not unreasonably priced. No seating there, though. Wait for a nice day, and take it to a park or the National Arboretum.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Gonzocook
                  kchurchill5 Mar 4, 2009 05:36 AM

                  Question off track, Any relationship to the Old Heidelberg Castle, they have a few locations up in TN and VA. I worked at the restaurant down here in SRQ part time for 7 years, they were planning on opening a deli. I believe Wolfgang new Hanz and Rosie (last name escapes me) he was a partner at the start. He was the one who wanted the bakery. Just wondering.

                  I am sure they would have excellent ham. At the restaurant they would have great deli meats all the time for lunches.

                  1. re: kchurchill5
                    alkapal Mar 6, 2009 04:44 AM

                    k, i don't think they're related. here is the heidelberg's "story": http://www.heidelbergbakery.com/?q=about

                    ...although the man's name is wolfgang!

                    btw, i remember the old heidelberg castle there in sarasota. wow, it was a hoot in the '70s, when there were the oompah bands and lots of beer drinkin'!

                    is it still there? or long gone?

                    1. re: alkapal
                      kchurchill5 Mar 9, 2009 12:37 PM

                      It was a blast to work there, 3 years on and off, part time bartending and waitress. I could order a steak in rare, medium and well. Count to ten and do the big elk horn, they even had the trampoline act. TN is the main one but I think a couple of other locations.

                      Lots of beer, brandy and jagermeister and good sausage :) It was fun

                2. Dennis S Mar 3, 2009 05:06 PM

                  The German Gourmet?

                  1. kchurchill5 Mar 3, 2009 03:56 PM

                    I like Boars Head and usually get that. I love to bake my own spiral and then freeze the slices in small bags. I use that and find it great.

                    1. s
                      Stiles Mar 3, 2009 03:49 PM

                      Doesn't Honeybaked Ham do sandwiches too?

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Stiles
                        MsDiPesto Mar 3, 2009 03:54 PM

                        I'm pretty sure Honeybaked does serve sandwiches. There's one near me, I'll have to do some research and report back. They're not open at night though, so it's not the most convenient place.

                      2. hill food Mar 2, 2009 02:03 PM

                        The Mother feels the same way about the sodium nitrate enhanced crap out there. she buys a whole ham, bakes and slices it up herself, granted not as convenient, but cheaper and one has a better idea of what's in it. it keeps well and you can always freeze it in portions.

                        Show Hidden Posts