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Some short sandwich commentary

I'd like to know from the LA crew on this one topic. Bay Cities to me, Godmother and the rest of the sandwiches on over and over experiences, is simply a feeble and weak sandwich all around. Why are people enamored over this sad excuse for a sandwich?

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  1. could it be the pink tomatoes?

    1. Who makes your favorite sub type sandwich?

      1. When I was in Atlantic City a few years back (stick with me) a friend recommended I go to a sandwich shop there called White House Subs. I got their house special, the Italian sub or whatever, and it was frickin' delicious, the best sub I ever had. It was loaded with Italian meats, and I mean loaded (the same kinds of meats in the Godmother) and the bread, while not necessarily my absolute favorite, was neither too crunchy nor too soft. And the whole thing was like $6.

        Now, the godmother, while the meats themselves are tasty, there is nowhere near enough of a proper meat to bread ratio (way too much bread). And that bread, while good in and of itself, is not appropriate for a sandwich cause it is way too crusty.

        So, does the sandwich taste good? Yes. If I had never had another good Italian-type sub, would I consider it good, yes? But once you've had a really, really good Italian sub, then yes, the Godmother falls short... Maybe if you got double meat on the Godmother it would start approaching a really good sub (but that bread is still too crunchy). I know see why the bread at White House Subs was just in between--on it's own, it might not be the best tasting bread, but it did fulfill it's job in the sub.

        7 Replies
        1. re: film_score

          "Now, the godmother, while the meats themselves are tasty, there is nowhere near enough of a proper meat to bread ratio (way too much bread)."

          I think your issue for meat in the meat/bread ratio is of personal preference. I personally think BC has the right balance, and yes, that's my personal preference. I used to be in your school - more is better - but having tried this sandwich numerous times over the course of 35+ years, I like it the way it is. Similarly, Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches usually have a lighter meat/bread ratio (at least in the SoCal area - Bay area folks seem to like the heavier emphasis on meat). For me, it's about the balance of flavors, as opposed to layers of meat held together by an "edible holding device." On occasion, I do want more protein. I've found Rinaldi's in El Segundo to hit that note well - the Godfather.

          1. re: bulavinaka

            That's probably why banh mi sandwiches are so reasonably priced.

            1. re: kevin

              "Similarly, Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches usually have a lighter meat/bread ratio..."

              I think they're reasonably priced for that reason, but also because of the competition in places like SGV and Little Saigon combined with the customer base that they serve (which came first - the chicken or the egg thing).

          2. re: film_score

            "But once you've had a really, really good Italian sub, then yes, the Godmother falls short..."

            My experience directly contradicts this claim, as I've had some of the best MA, CT, and NY have to offer.

            1. re: a_and_w

              "But once you've had a really, really good Italian sub, then yes, the Godmother falls short..."

              I'm on the side of agreeing with this statement. That's not to say, of course, that folks aren't free to love the godmother for what it is...but those, like me, who have a (east coast) preconception of what an Italian combo could/should be, will probably not find the godmother to be a suitable surrogate.

              To hone in a little sharper... though doubling the meat might take it one step closer, it's not just about meat volume. The best Italian heros I've had do not sport equal quantities of each meat, but rather a larger amount of some and just a hint of others.

              Think: recipe or dish, rather than just a list of ingredients layered on in equal proportion regardless.

              And, yes, though the Bay Cities bread can be all right when it's fresh, it's still not the ideal one for an Italian combo, to my taste.

              1. re: wutzizname

                "but those, like me, who have a (east coast) preconception of what an Italian combo could/should be, will probably not find the godmother to be a suitable surrogate."

                This is a very fair comment, wutzizname. But such preconceptions flow both ways. I was always a little disappointed by Italian delis back east because they didn't do sandwiches like CA. Take the Melampo man on Sullivan Street (now called Alidoro). His Italian sandwiches were works of art, with carefully predetermined proportions of the highest quality meats and condiments. But I was always a little annoyed that I couldn't just have my Pinnochio with lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles, and dijon (yes, dijon) mustard.

                BTW, for those dissatisfied about the amount of meat on the Godmother, try ordering a different sandwich. I often order salami+cheddar or capicola+provolone, which gets me roughly twice the meat as a Godmother.

            2. re: film_score

              OMG - The White House Rules. It does make the Godmother look like a complete fairy.

            3. I think the bread makes the sandwich at BC's, don't understand why they charge a buck extra for "the works", which is basically lettuce, tomatoes and onions?

              Had a Claro's pre-made large Italian sub for $5 last week and it wasn't bad for the price.

              1. Because we have different preferences than you and don't experience is as feeble, weak, or sad. Seriously, do you really think there's a way anyone can persuade you through reason or argument that it's superior? Just accept that it's not your cup of tea and move on.

                PS: I have to admit that I wouldn't mind a selection of rolls, including something softer for when I'm not in the mood for their bread. I also would like better meat than Boar's Head. I thought all these things again when hitting some Italian delis up in SF over the holidays. But the Godmother I thoroughly enjoy, even if there is some room for improvement.