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Mendocino Farms - what's your favorite sandy?

In anticipation of MF's opening near my home (in WeHo) next week, I feel ought to prepare by checking out the one near my worke (in MDR).
I would love to hear what you folks dig there.
TIA, Bob

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  1. My son loves their The Veggie BLT Melt with vegetarian bacon, pepper jack cheese, Scarborough Farm’s greens, tomato, red onion, vegenaise on panini grilled buckwheat bread
    and I love the Steak BLT with carved steak, applewood bacon, romaine lettuce, roasted tomatoes, herb aioli, caramelized onions on toasted rustic white bread + Point Reyes Blue Cheese. But no matter what you get you can't go wrong.

    Mendocino Farms
    4724 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292

    1. The Kurobuta Pork Banh Mi on the soft roll (standard is on ciabatta otherwise).
      The pork belly is caramelized but not too sweet, and comes with all the classic bahn mi fixings - it's delicious.

      On special when they have it, the lobster club is very good too.

      Love their grain or stone fruit + greens salads too, and they always offer free samples while you're in line.

      1. I had the steak BLT the other night and it was delicious. The banh mi is great too. And I did a customized grilled cheese awhile back with salami and a couple of different cheeses that was to die for. I don't think you can go wrong with any of their offerings.

        1. Vegan Shwarma. You're welcome.

          1. Three Little Piggies panini.

            November to Remember.

            1. If you're not a vegetarian, the Steak BLT is the superstar at this establishment. It is, in my opinion, their "Big Mac" or "Whopper" - which is to say that it's *the* sandwich here! (IMHO)

              What's amazing about this place is that a dozen different people could say the same thing about a dozen different sandwiches here and it'd be true! Except for the Peanut Butter & Bacon sandwich....I had really high hopes for it but I was disappointed.

              1 Reply
              1. re: GABoy33

                Another vote for the Steak BLT. And I also have to point out how good the sides and soups are!

              2. Bacon Peanut Butter.

                The Boylan soda fountain is a double bonus.

                1. Everything is amazing (other than prosciutto and chicken, but hey that's just me)
                  I guess I would have to vote for lemongrass steak bahn mi. Ohya

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: kraus5656

                    The prosciutto and roasted chicken is actually a favorite of mine - I love the honey-roasted almonds in there. Also love the ham & gruyere grilled cheese, curry chicken salad (sandwich), and have been surprised at how good the vegan Singaporean dosa wrap and vegan shawerma are (I'm not vegetarian or vegan, and usually steer clear of vegan offerings).

                    Also love their rotating selection of daily salads, especially the curried orzo.

                    1. re: Jme

                      I've always wanted to try one of their vegan offerings, they all sound really good. But as a 1

                    2. re: kraus5656

                      Funny you mention this. I wandered past the other day and tried the prosciutto/chicken and a cup of minestrone.

                      The soup was fine, tasty. And small. Quite small.

                      The sandwich itself arrived wrapped in brown paper, the size of a standard peanut putter and jelly sandwich on white bread. I picked it up and was surprised at just how dense the thing was. It was oddly sweet. I couldn't quite isolate the prosciutto flavor-- it just sort of coalesced into this odd melange of stuff, and I wasn't quite sure what I was eating.

                      I walked away having paid about $14 for this, which was about double what it should have cost.

                      For some reason this place strikes me as attracting the same sort of demographic as Lemonade, but I like Lemonade a whole lot more. My wife and I can share a stew and several generous portions of bright, interesting salads for $20. But $14 for a soup and sandwich is just too much.

                      I'll give it another shot, simply because I know it is beloved by Chowhounds. But as of today I'm unimpressed.

                      Mr Taster

                      1. re: Mr Taster

                        Yup. I've said it before. I kept thinking, well maybe I just haven't had the right sandwich yet, but they never seem to nail the right bread for individual sandwich to my taste. Even though I like the flavor combinations in general.

                        1. re: Mr Taster

                          Agreed. I've only been there once, but I didn't find it sufficiently compelling to find the time/energy to go again (I went to the MDR one). It wasn't bad by any stretch of the imagination; I just thought it wasn't particularly tasty and was kind of overpriced. I think I found the descriptions more interesting than the flavors. I can't even remember which sandwich I had (maybe one of the specials that was a curried chicken of some sort?).

                          I agree w/ you about Lemonade, although I found the meat in the stew pretty tough the one time I had it (the flavors were great, though). While the prices seem steep, the portions are (surprisingly) quite large....

                          1. re: ilysla

                            ilysla can I ask what sandwich you had at Mendocino Farms that you didn't like? I do think their Steak BLT, the Kurobuta Pork Belly Banh Mi, their Spicy Lemongrass Steak Banh Mi and the new Braised Lamb are truly great sandwiches.

                            1. re: wienermobile

                              As I mentioned in my post, I don't recall exactly which sandwich it was.... Let me take a look at the on-line menu to see if I can find it....

                              Can't find it. This was probably > 6 mo ago, but I vaguely recall it being a curried chicken sandwich?

                              More than willing to give it a second chance and will try your recs.... But, again, not in a huge rush to go back....

                              1. re: ilysla

                                They do have a curried chicken salad. I've had it. It's probably not in my top-10 of sandwiches they make.

                                Lemongrass steak banh mi, pork belly banh mi, three little piggies, chicken MBT, "November to remember" (a turkey sandwich with stuffing, cranberry chutney & other things), various cold cut sandwiches, the aforementioned lamb sandwich...all things I'd order before I got to that chicken salad again.

                                I mean, I would be surprised if any of the sandwiches changes your life; but IMHO, you're doing yourself a disservice if you judge the place based on the particular item you tried.

                                1. re: Jack Flash

                                  Looking at the menu, their chicken salad sandwich is described differently now (doesn't mention curry), but you're right, they did have one in the past.

                                  It hasn't been as good in the last year or so because they changed their bread - originally it was on Breadbar curcuma hazelnut bread, and it was fantastic - the toastiness of the hazelnuts was perfect. Maybe a year or so ago they changed to cranberry walnut bread, I think, which wasn't as good.

                                  And now it looks like it's on buckwheat bread with no curry in the chicken salad. Haven't tried this latest incarnation, but I can imagine why it wasn't too memorable.

                                  1. re: Jme

                                    I've had that curry chicken salad sandwich before and also didn't care for it, however I do like Mendocino Farm's steak BLT and pork belly bánh mì

                        1. re: Tripeler

                          Oh KKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK (times 2)... ;-D>

                          1. re: Servorg

                            Oy vey - schmaltz x 2. While Mendocino Farms does great sandys, I don't think none are as great as this one, and they don't serve pitchers either - their loss...

                            The vast majority of MF's sandwiches hit the spot - if the description sounds good to you, it probably will be. A couple of things to consider:

                            They do have some additions that are worth considering. Depending on the sandwich, more cheese might be desired, and in the honey-roasted almonds are a nice addition in certain sandwiches (some come with it already).

                            They will panini/grill any sandwich on request.

                            I don't know if the WeHo location will be pouring beer. While the beer on tap at the MdR location is from a reputable brewery (Anderson Valley), I found the whole system to be not conducive to sandwich eating. I gave it two tries a while back, and the taps were still needed in need of adjusting (way too much CO2), and the amounts offered to be way too light for me. I'm sure the taps at this point are pouring better, but when one orders an 8 oz pour, I'd swear that either I'm just far too used to a pint, or eight ounces has gone on a diet.

                            1. re: bulavinaka

                              "They will panini/grill any sandwich on request."

                              Hi, bulavinaka!
                              This is my single complaint with the sandwiches at Mendocino Farms...and I speak specifically about the MdR location because this is the one I know. I like their "grilled" cheese on walnut bread...it might be walnut-cranberry bread. However, when I order that, they tell me that they can not grill or panini (verb!) that bread. I always ask them to do their best, but the sandwich comes out with the cheese cool and rather glumpy. Oh, well~

                              1. re: liu

                                Those bastards! That post is from October of 2011, and because they've often screwed up my orders, I don't go nearly as often anymore. I'm not surprised that they knit-pick you with their "rules" after my horrid experiences with their beer rules.

                                1. re: bulavinaka

                                  I don't much think about them anymore...too many other places and not enough Saturdays to try 'em all!

                        2. Definitely love their Kurobata Pork Belly Banh Mi. The pork belly is savory, meaty and fatty in the way that make your toes curl :) Love crunching into the pickled daikon and carrots, the cilantro gives it a fresh taste and the jalapeno adds a nice kick. Overall a delicious, well-rounded bite.

                          Don't leave without ordering a side of Curried Orzo with Roasted Life’s a Choke Farm’s Cauliflower. It's vegan and it's beyond delicious! In fact, I've been hunting down the recipe and have only found a partial from a photographed chalkboard recipe. If anyone can locate the entire recipe, send it my way!

                          Mendocino Farms
                          4724 Admiralty Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: lavenderandsage

                            You're singing my song. The pork belly bahn mi and the curried orzo are the two things that have me returning to Mendo over and over again. And the soda fountain, for sure.

                          2. I eat there maybe 2-3 times per week since its right by me. I love it. The sandwich I get the most is the Blue Buffalo chicken in the wheat tortilla wrap, it just hits all the flavors I like. Not for everyone, but I am a fan of buffalo chicken its awesome as a burrito.

                            If its on the menu (its a seasonal item), the braised lamb with mint pesto and cypress grove goat cheese is life changing.

                            1. Just had Mendocino Farm's new spring menu Braised Lamb Sandwich with slow braised lamb shoulder, mint pesto, Drake Family Farm’s goat cheese, balsamic vinegar, pickled red onions, Scarborough Farm’s arugula on toasted ciabatta. One Great Sandwich.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: wienermobile

                                Booyah. Grubs' current go-tos: spring lamb & three little piggies (not on menu, but available)

                                1. re: Mr Grub

                                  Just had their Spanish Chicken sandwich - another winner.

                                1. vegan shawarma, modified to add fresh turkey

                                  1. The steak BLT is really, truly delicious--but the one I can't live without is the Not-So-Fried Chicken. I don't remember everything that's on it, and I don't really care, because it's perfect. Offered with a side of either BBQ or buffalo sauce, and while the BBQ is great, nothing beats the buffalo. AMAZING.

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: schrutefarms

                                      Good to hear. I just ordered it for the first time. Will report back.

                                      1. re: Thor123

                                        Very good sandwich. Dont know that I would run out to have it again, but it was good.

                                        1. re: Thor123

                                          See, for me, I would even leave the house in the RAIN (I'm such an Angelino!) for the not-so-fried chicken. But I only really got like that when they started offering buffalo sauce. I am a GLUTTON for buffalo sauce!!!

                                    2. Vegan Trip to India--really really good.

                                      I also like their Life's a Choke artichoke salad.

                                      Their current featured salad--Chinese Chicken Salad is a true miss. There's nothing special about it, and at $10, made me feel like a stupid head for purchasing it. (I feel okay when I overspend on food I like, but when it's on nothing special, I get horribly annoyed.)

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: cjla

                                        Thank you for commenting about your experience with their Chinese chicken salad. Was tempted to try it, but have mixed experiences with Mendocino Farm's salad offerings

                                      2. Had streak ban mi. Tasty but needed more steak. The staff at the one by farmers market so nice.

                                        1. The spring sandwich -- braised lamb with mint pesto, was terrific. I'm sorry to see it go.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: vickie2172

                                            I need to get there with that pastrami popup. Special now is Cuban and a smoked turkey cllub