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Open face(d)

Gastronomos Jun 12, 2013 08:20 AM

Been curious about the open face(d) sandwich in many places around the NY NJ Conn tri-state area. Burgers, sandwiches and the like.
The burger has the cheese on the bun, but it's easy to top and eat.
The sandwich, especially the Reuben in some places is soggy rye bread and a lot of very wet sauerkraut a few slices of corned beef/pastrami and some semi-melted swiss cheese. It's a knife and fork sandwich for sure. Not easy to close and eat like a sandwich between two slices of bread. But no indication of this is made on the menus and some menus with pictures show a sandwich not open face(d).

What are chowhounds opinions on the open face(d) sandwiches?
Like 'em? Not like 'em?

  1. Gastronomos Jun 13, 2013 05:15 AM


    13 Replies
    1. re: Gastronomos
      JayL Jun 13, 2013 08:41 PM

      That isn't open faced.

      Open faced (to me) is the swch minus one piece of bread.

      1. re: JayL
        Gastronomos Jun 13, 2013 08:45 PM

        most "open face(d)" I've been served have two pieces of bread under the toppings.

        1. re: Gastronomos
          JayL Jun 14, 2013 05:53 AM

          Well then...let's say it has no top...

          1. re: JayL
            Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 11:50 AM

            if I asked for a "top" could I pick it up and eat it as a sandwich?

            1. re: Gastronomos
              JayL Jun 18, 2013 08:34 AM

              I could care less about that.

              Most, if not all, open faced sandwiches I've ever seen are not meant to be picked up and eaten.

              1. re: JayL
                njmarshall55 Jun 18, 2013 08:44 AM

                Agreed. At least in all the diner's in which I spent my mis-spent youth.

                1. re: JayL
                  HillJ Jun 18, 2013 09:04 AM

                  which i believe many of us agreed with here. fork & knife doesn't make it any less a sandwich...hence the words open faced sandwich...but G. has other ideas.

                  makes life interesting not bothersome.

                  1. re: HillJ
                    grampart Jun 18, 2013 09:23 AM

                    " ...fork & knife doesn't make it any less a sandwich...hence the words open faced ........."

                    I feel, in the case of a Reuben, it does make for a lesser sandwich. Too often, the meat is dried out and/or the cheese is burnt or rubbery. A Reuben is a grilled sandwich requiring two pieces of bread, a top and a bottom. Anything else is not a Reuben.

                    1. re: grampart
                      HillJ Jun 18, 2013 09:32 AM

                      Sounds like a lousy Reuben. I like Reuben open or closed and what comes to mind is a) finding a partner cause the sandwich is too big for one and b) getting a top notch Reuben or it's going back to the kitchen.

        2. re: Gastronomos
          c oliver Jun 14, 2013 04:18 PM

          That's a regular hamburger before the top of the bun is placed.

          1. re: c oliver
            Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 06:33 PM

            "That's a regular hamburger before the top of the bun is placed."

            when does it become a cheeseburger?

            1. re: Gastronomos
              c oliver Jun 14, 2013 06:38 PM

              Sorry. It's a cheeseburger and you know that.

              1. re: c oliver
                Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 06:52 PM

                not to be obtuse but the cheese is on the bun not the burger and if I were to add sliced tomato (if I bothered to order the "Deluxe") the cheese would then be on the tomato as well, still not the burger.

                Ok, that is being obtuse, but no more than some of the others here and their defenses, LOL!

        3. BeeZee Jun 13, 2013 05:50 AM

          like them...it's usually something like the Rueben, as you described, which would be an absolute mess to pick up. Too big, too drippy, bread falling apart halfway thru. Plus, cutting the sandwich with knife/fork allows me to eat the parts I want to eat first, vs. the forced progression of a hand-held sandwich!

          5 Replies
          1. re: BeeZee
            Gastronomos Jun 13, 2013 12:05 PM

            BeeZee, you in jersey?

            also, I think my question was phrased wrong. it being too big and messy is the problem, but not stated or eluded to on the menu is a bigger problem. I ordered a sandwich that was not on the "hot open" sandwich column.

            do chowhounds like it when presented with an open face(d) sandwich when ordering something that in most places is served as a sandwich between two pieces of bread? the classic Reuben included.

            1. re: Gastronomos
              BeeZee Jun 14, 2013 04:07 PM

              OK, reading through the progression of the thread, I now understand that you are disappointed if you see "sandwich" on the menu and are presented not with 2 pieces of bread enclosing a filling in a manner that allows you to pick it up in hand. gotcha.
              Yes, I'm a Jersey Girl...and I've gotten to the point that I'm surprised by a Rueben not served open-faced...but I agree that I do prefer the menu to differentiate, since it sets different expectations.

              1. re: Gastronomos
                c oliver Jun 14, 2013 04:19 PM

                What sandwich did you order?

                1. re: c oliver
                  Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 06:32 PM

                  a reuben

                  1. re: Gastronomos
                    c oliver Jun 14, 2013 06:40 PM

                    Oops, it appears you missed this in replying to my questions.

                    " c oliver about 2 hours ago
                    Since you seem to experience this fairly often AND it bothers you, why not just ask "how do you serve that?" Then you can make the decision to order that or something else. Not rocket surgery :)"

            2. h
              HillJ Jun 13, 2013 02:18 PM

              I'm from NJ but never thought of the open faced sandwich as just a Jersey thing...
              my husband and sons will eat an open faced hot turkey, hot ham and swiss cheese, hot pastrami sandwich with a side of slaw, pickle and fries at least once a week. on rye or dark russian bread.

              21 Replies
              1. re: HillJ
                Gastronomos Jun 13, 2013 04:48 PM

                it's not just a Jersey thing. I think that in Jersey and LI it's more common to find a diner that has a Reuben or some sandwich on the menu and it doesn't say "open face(d)". When one orders a sandwich such as the Reuben, and it comes to the table as not a sandwich but rather a knife and fork meal, I, for one, am not pleased. I ordered a sandwich as described on the menu.
                A "hot open face(d)" turkey or roast beef with gravy etc. is described as such on the menu. a cheeseburger is usually easy enough to assemble.

                do chowhounds find this satisfactory or are chowhounds indifferent when ordering a sandwich?

                1. re: Gastronomos
                  HillJ Jun 13, 2013 05:42 PM

                  See now my experience on this is that an open faced sandwich (typically served hot) I expect to enjoy with a fork and knife because it's a warm meal and especially if a good deal of melted cheese is included over top. Open faced sandwiches don't really have a divide line between the two slices of bread and the cheese is melted over both sides like a blanket. A burger served open is so you can add condiments; this is a different thing, yes? A triple decker (cold sandwich; even with bacon) I usually need to pull apart to get my mouth around and decidedly turn it into a open faced sandwich of sorts. Tuna, egg & chicken salad sandwiches can be served open or closed.

                  I've found open faced sandwiches in NY, PA, DE and IL right off the top of my beanie.

                  And the one that throws me is an open faced sub sandwich.

                  1. re: HillJ
                    Gastronomos Jun 13, 2013 06:03 PM

                    In most places around the US outside of Jersey style diners, a Reuben is a hot sandwich with hot corned beef/pastrami, hot sauerkraut, melted cheese and dressing - not open faced unless the menu says so.

                    Hot open sandwiches are great if desired and even greater if one knows that is what they ordered before the surprise...

                    hot open faced sub sandwiches are what I seem to get at all the pizzerias around here. so difficult to eat as well without the use of a knife and fork... or at least a fork to help empty it a bit before folding and eating...

                    1. re: Gastronomos
                      HillJ Jun 13, 2013 06:05 PM

                      oh so its the not knowing how you will be presented with your sandwich (open or closed) that's the bugger? do you ask ahead of ordering? I can't say I do. Open or closed I'm digging in that sandwich!

                      1. re: HillJ
                        Gastronomos Jun 13, 2013 06:19 PM

                        I don't ever ask or make 'special' requests. I order a sandwich in a place and I expect a sandwich. if it was described or labeled as 'open face(d)' I may order that if in the mood. if I order a reuben and it comes open face(d) and in such a sloppy way that I cannot close it to eat it like a sandwich, I would be less satisfied. but all's good. I was curious what chowhounds thought about the surprise. disappointed or not?

                        1. re: Gastronomos
                          HillJ Jun 13, 2013 06:22 PM

                          Yeah, sometimes my brain is as slow as a Jersey snail, G.

                          1. re: Gastronomos
                            c oliver Jun 14, 2013 04:22 PM

                            Since you seem to experience this fairly often AND it bothers you, why not just ask "how do you serve that?" Then you can make the decision to order that or something else. Not rocket surgery :)

                            1. re: c oliver
                              Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 06:44 PM

                              it's not rocket surgery. no.

                              it is open for preference and discussion.

                              I see those that like diners of the New Jersey style have defended these open face(d) sandwiches and won't budge on that.

                              I see that some see that if a person ordered a sandwich and it was served open faced, not being able to close the sandwich and eat it would be bothersome. Yes. A knife and fork will solve that problem of stuffing it into ones pie hole.

                              I am also of Greek heritage. My family is not in the diner business or any food business at all. But friends through the years own and have worked these places. I subsequently do not make special requests, ever, and I do not ask the surly waitperson questions. I order and usually suffer through it.

                              I do ask here what chowhounds think of these wet soggy "sandwiches" that are knife and fork meals but not describes as such on the menu.

                      2. re: HillJ
                        Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 05:33 AM

                        "A burger served open is so you can add condiments; this is a different thing, yes?"


                        1. re: Gastronomos
                          fldhkybnva Jun 14, 2013 07:55 AM

                          I often am served burgers open but assume it's for condiment application and the bun is then applied and it's eaten as a "sandwich"

                          1. re: fldhkybnva
                            Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 08:01 AM

                            you "assume"

                            does that mean that if it were not open you would not apply condiments?

                            1. re: Gastronomos
                              JayL Jun 14, 2013 08:03 AM

                              Are you saying you seriously eat your burger one side at a time if it shows up on the plate separately?

                              1. re: JayL
                                Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 08:57 AM


                              2. re: Gastronomos
                                KaimukiMan Jun 14, 2013 08:26 AM

                                I don't know what is done on the east coast. out west an open face sandwich means it is probably meant to be eaten that way and is probably covered in mashed potatoes and gravy.

                                Hamburgers in "better" establishments are almost always served with the top bun and main condiments on the side, as mentioned by others to allow people to add their own minor condiments such as mayo, ketchup, mustard, relish, etc. This does not 'imply' that the burger is to be eaten with a knife and fork. So in my mind at least it is a very different thing, yes. No assumption, it is common practice.

                            2. re: Gastronomos
                              Hobbert Jun 14, 2013 09:54 AM


                            3. re: HillJ
                              JayL Jun 14, 2013 05:55 AM

                              "A burger served open is so you can add condiments; this is a different thing, yes?"


                              1. re: JayL
                                HillJ Jun 14, 2013 06:09 AM

                                No, yes...okay...

                                I'm thinking, the only reason a burger would be served open is so the customer can add ketchup.

                                1. re: HillJ
                                  Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 07:49 AM

                                  it is That difficult to serve it closed and the customer could then Still add ketchup?

                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                    JayL Jun 14, 2013 08:04 AM

                                    You are making a silly point.

                                    It's about presentation as well as "filling the plate".

                                    1. re: JayL
                                      Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 08:11 AM

                                      Thank you! Exactly!

                                      I like the presentation of a burger in a basket of fries. Diner style.

                              2. re: HillJ
                                MGZ Jun 14, 2013 08:35 AM

                                "open faced sub sandwich"

                                Awfully pretty

                                Jumbo shrimp

                                Adult male

                                Dry Martini

                                Comfortable bra

                                And, my personal favorite: French deodorant.

                          2. fldhkybnva Jun 13, 2013 05:01 PM

                            I don't think it's a Jersey thing, but I don't personally enjoy them as my idea of a sandwich usually includes picking up the item and biting into them but I know plenty of people who don't mind it.

                            btw that sandwich looks great!

                            1. John E. Jun 13, 2013 06:53 PM

                              I am generally not a fan of 'open-faced' sandwiches. When I order a sandwich, I want to pick it up to eat it.

                              When I was in my 20's, I went to a small town cafe and ordered a 'hot beef sandwich' and was surprised with what the waitress brought me. It was good, it just was not a sandwich.

                              1. MGZ Jun 14, 2013 06:49 AM

                                Gastro, you ever been to Kelly's in Neptune for their Reuben? Get the pastrami, well done. I haven't been able to put down a whole one since I was a teenager, but if you can, I'll mail you a check for the cost of it. I assure you it is platinum compared to the silver sandwiches you showed us.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: MGZ
                                  Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 07:59 AM

                                  I will put it on my list of places to try next time I'm in NJ, I promise!
                                  I'm usually a small plate eater that eats every two to three hours, but if I get the urge, a large sandwich can be a light snack...

                                  these pics are just pulled from the internet, generic whatever pics. I don't take pictures of my food usually.

                                  The usual small plate eating habit I have prompted me to ask about this open face(d) sandwich. I order a sandwich which I can eat easily and get served a large plate of sloppy wet bread and lots of stuff. Tasty? Yes. What I ordered as described on the menu? Usually no. It's also why I don't do sides (monkey dish or not) and I don't do "Deluxe" - fries and such. Just the sandwich please.
                                  Do all chowhounds have indifference to this issue or am I just eating a salad?

                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                    MGZ Jun 14, 2013 08:08 AM

                                    Go with the mini. I sometimes split even that smaller version with Mrs. Z. The full thing is immense. Here's a kinda cruddy picture. Keep in mind that plate is around a foot or more long.

                                    Edit - I should add that this one failed to be ordered well done so that mammouth amount of cheese doesn't have the brown, bubbly blisters that I so enjoy . . . .

                                2. alliegator Jun 14, 2013 09:39 AM

                                  To me, open faced sandwiches are PA, NJ, NY style diner food, usually hot turkey or beef with gravy. I like 'em, they're pretty good.
                                  The only time open faced really bothers me is in Europe when they come in Scandinavian smorrebrod form and they're piled pretty high with toppings. There's no way to eat these things gracefully, and I really just want the other freakin' piece of bread!

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: alliegator
                                    mariacarmen Jun 22, 2013 02:46 AM

                                    oh allie - l loved those! in Prague particularly. like large canapes....

                                  2. linguafood Jun 14, 2013 11:24 AM

                                    Most sandwiches in Germany are open-faced.

                                    Here are some fab sammiches I've had in the 'dam (smoked rib-eye & a BLAT).

                                    9 Replies
                                    1. re: linguafood
                                      Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 12:05 PM

                                      those look mighty tasty!

                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                        linguafood Jun 14, 2013 12:09 PM

                                        They were. But you had to use silverware to eat 'em.

                                        1. re: linguafood
                                          Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 12:10 PM

                                          did you know that before you ordered it???

                                          1. re: Gastronomos
                                            linguafood Jun 14, 2013 12:11 PM

                                            Oh yeah, man. I mean, I could see them on the other tables, so.... yep.

                                            1. re: linguafood
                                              Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 12:22 PM

                                              yep. yes sir. indeed.

                                          2. re: linguafood
                                            KaimukiMan Jun 14, 2013 12:35 PM

                                            look great, but not what an American would call a sandwich. Of course you weren't in America.

                                            1. re: KaimukiMan
                                              linguafood Jun 14, 2013 02:49 PM

                                              Right. These were called brootjes, being that their Dutch '-)

                                              In Germany, it's the good ol' Butterbrot: always open-faced --- never overloaded like most 'murrcan (or Danish, I guess) sammiches --- or Stulle.

                                              Actually, a Stulle can often also be a ... umm... closed sandwich?

                                        2. re: linguafood
                                          alliegator Jun 14, 2013 12:43 PM

                                          Those look like some really good eatin'! And that kind of European open faced, I'm totally down with.
                                          But the kind you get in Copenhagen, meant to be a handheld and towering with stuff means I'm going to be wearing it, hehe.

                                          1. re: linguafood
                                            HillJ Jun 14, 2013 02:06 PM

                                            How could you not expect a knife & fork for that beauty? Even without knowing in advance, you'd dig in right?

                                            I don't mind the element of surprise, just bring lots of napkins and give me elbow room!

                                          2. grampart Jun 14, 2013 12:30 PM

                                            Open faced Reuben sandwiches are like deep-dish pizzas. Possibly very tasty, but wrong.

                                            21 Replies
                                            1. re: grampart
                                              Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 12:38 PM

                                              thanks. I think it's wrong or worse when I wasn't informed that it was open.

                                              1. re: Gastronomos
                                                kengk Jun 14, 2013 12:46 PM

                                                Agreed, I would have returned it and pitched a hissy fit. Probably posted a rant about the whole ordeal on Facebook.

                                                1. re: kengk
                                                  Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 01:21 PM


                                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                                    kengk Jun 14, 2013 01:33 PM


                                                    1. re: kengk
                                                      Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 01:35 PM


                                              2. re: grampart
                                                MGZ Jun 14, 2013 12:59 PM

                                                gramp, as much as I love and respect you as a 'hound, I gotta disagree. I mean the Jersey in me had me thinkin' that deep dish pizza was a cardinal sin, but after a week livin' in a Chicago hotel room, I learned of the beauty that it had. Kinda like a zaftig, Rubens' model.

                                                1. re: MGZ
                                                  Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 01:22 PM

                                                  the Only thing I can see wrong with a deep dish is calling it a pizza.

                                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                                    MGZ Jun 14, 2013 01:26 PM

                                                    Gastro, if that kind, sweet, thick, lovely thing wants you to call her something, you indulge her. Otherwise, you're settlin, for a cold burger and fries from room service at nine.

                                                    1. re: MGZ
                                                      Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 01:38 PM

                                                      true story.

                                                      I can tell you that in Greek Cuisine a "pita" is not just a flat bread. It is also a stuffed pizza of sorts. But the deep dish has no top, it is Open Face(d)
                                                      ...but a rose by any other name...

                                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                                        MGZ Jun 14, 2013 01:49 PM

                                                        If she wants me to call her Rose . . . .

                                                        1. re: MGZ
                                                          Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 01:50 PM

                                                          or Al

                                                          1. re: Gastronomos
                                                            MGZ Jun 14, 2013 01:55 PM

                                                            Besides in that situation, havin' no top just makes things easier in the long run.

                                                            1. re: MGZ
                                                              Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 02:55 PM

                                                              yep. sure does!

                                                        2. re: Gastronomos
                                                          c oliver Jun 14, 2013 05:10 PM

                                                          In my limited experience, pita just refers to the bread. If opened and filled, it's more likely a pita sandwich. When we were in Turkey it wasn't 'opened.' Just had the meats or whatever on it and then rolled to make it easier to eat. Like a doner. I think what you describe is the more recent tendency in the Western world.

                                                          1. re: c oliver
                                                            Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 06:54 PM

                                                            have you heard of or have seen or tasted "spanakopita"?

                                                            It's a "pita"

                                                            so is "tiropita", "hortopita", "kreatopita"

                                                            all are pitas and all are stuffed between sheets of dough and baked

                                                            1. re: Gastronomos
                                                              c oliver Jun 14, 2013 06:59 PM

                                                              That "pita" translates as "pie."

                                                              1. re: c oliver
                                                                Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 07:02 PM


                                                                1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                  c oliver Jun 14, 2013 07:08 PM

                                                                  Ah, okay, you edited your reply. That's cool. But glad you admit that a pita is not a pie.

                                                                  1. re: c oliver
                                                                    Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 07:11 PM

                                                                    Greek cuisine is a lot more than a pita sandwich

                                                                    1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                      c oliver Jun 14, 2013 07:17 PM

                                                                      Yep, just what I said. Thanks again for agreeing with me.

                                                    2. re: MGZ
                                                      grampart Jun 14, 2013 05:31 PM

                                                      Hey, I said it could be tasty. Just remember, it's a casserole reminiscent of pizza, but it's not pizza; and a Reuben is a grilled sandwich that requires 2 pieces of bread. Anything else is.......well, something else.

                                                  2. njmarshall55 Jun 14, 2013 01:00 PM

                                                    Personally, I despise messy food...wet ribs, dripping sauce, etc. If a traditionally "closed" sandwich is too full or messy, I'll grab the old knife and fork and damn the looks and comments.

                                                    1. w
                                                      wonderwoman Jun 14, 2013 03:27 PM

                                                      grew up in northern jersey and have fond memories of open-faced roast beef sandwiches with gravy and mashed potatoes.

                                                      3 Replies
                                                      1. re: wonderwoman
                                                        John E. Jun 14, 2013 05:50 PM

                                                        In my post on this thread I wrote about those. Diners in Minnesota (usually referred to as cafes) have hot beef, hot pork, and hot turkery sandwiches that are as you described although sometimes they are called 'commercials'.

                                                        Even though they are called sandwiches, I don't think of them that way. I don't even think of them as an 'open-faced' sandwich. It meat and gravy on a piece of, usually white, bread.

                                                        1. re: wonderwoman
                                                          Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 06:48 PM

                                                          hot open roast beef over white bread topped with brown gravy. mashed potatoes on the side (preferably on the same plate and not a monkey dish) in some places and fries in others. really a great thing to enjoy indeed!

                                                          It is also always listed under the "Hot Open Sandwiches" column

                                                          1. re: wonderwoman
                                                            njmarshall55 Jun 17, 2013 01:07 PM

                                                            A NJ diner, 3 a.m, staple, fer sure.

                                                          2. h
                                                            HillJ Jun 14, 2013 05:56 PM


                                                            plenty of new sandwiches borrowing from the historical concept.


                                                            1. a
                                                              acgold7 Jun 14, 2013 06:49 PM

                                                              I know exactly what you mean and I agree. A Reuben must be grilled and eaten closed so you get the crunch of the bread. When it's served open and piled high and wet and messy, it's a disappointment if you don't know about it beforehand. I love the Carnegie but their Reuben isn't my favorite for that reason.

                                                              I now always ask beforehand when I am in the NE.

                                                              1. girloftheworld Jun 14, 2013 07:26 PM

                                                                When I think "open face" I am thinking a Kentucky Hot Brown
                                                                or Eggs Bendict...Knife and fork one piece of bread on the bottom..love
                                                                monster sandwiches that are splayed in two pieces on plate as if you are supouse to place the halves together then cut them ? not a fan

                                                                15 Replies
                                                                1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                  Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 07:34 PM

                                                                  When you think of a Kentucky Hot Brown Sandwich it doesn't look like the picture here:

                                                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                    girloftheworld Jun 14, 2013 07:47 PM

                                                                    goodness no,

                                                                    it is open face and the bacon criscrosses over the top and it is all bubbly

                                                                    1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                      Gastronomos Jun 14, 2013 08:11 PM

                                                                      like this?:

                                                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                        girloftheworld Jun 14, 2013 08:21 PM

                                                                        Ahhuuuu Yummmm Yessss! that is what I know as a Kentucky Hot Brown. My dad makes them for breakfast on derby day. We always have a big party...and these are the calm before the crazy starts.

                                                                        1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                          Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 05:21 AM

                                                                          so the Kentucky Hot Open Brown is described or known as an open sandwich.

                                                                          btw, I never thought of eggs benedict as a sandwich at all, ever.

                                                                          1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                            girloftheworld Jun 15, 2013 08:22 AM

                                                                            really? why is that? Because of it being a breakfast thing? Or the englishmuffin? I think bread..I think sandwhich. Too broad in my thinking?

                                                                            1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                              Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 08:41 AM

                                                                              if I ordered poached eggs with ham or Canadian bacon, around these parts it would come with choice of toast. English muffin is often a choice. I could assemble a sandwich I guess, but why? I certainly don't order poached eggs well done...

                                                                              1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                girloftheworld Jun 15, 2013 09:31 AM

                                                                                ohhhh so to you a sandwich should be able to be picked up and eaten with the hands iregardless if it is "open face" ?

                                                                                to me "open face" sandwich means it is meant to be eaten with a fork and knife ... so the poached egg would still be poached..welsh rarebit.. chipbeef on toast..

                                                                                1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                                  Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 09:41 AM

                                                                                  i'd love to try and eat a chipped beef on toast or even a Chicken a la King typically served on toast as a sandwich !

                                                                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                    girloftheworld Jun 15, 2013 09:45 AM

                                                                                    lol seeeee that is because it is an open face knife and fork sandwich( ok i knoooow that one is pushin' it) but you see what i mean.

                                                                  2. re: girloftheworld
                                                                    MGZ Jun 18, 2013 02:14 PM

                                                                    In late August of 2001, shortly before the World changed, I appeared before a Federal Court judge in Louisvillle. He denied a motion that I had made and that he had no legal reason to do. The hearing ended around half past noon.

                                                                    I go out front to smoke a Camel and call back to my firm.





                                                                    The judge comes out, in a sweatsuit. He turns to me, "You smoke?"

                                                                    "You drove me to it this mornin'?

                                                                    "We both know that I'm gonna be reversed when you fancy bastards appeal."


                                                                    "You ever have a 'Hot Brown', young fella?"

                                                                    Now, even in those days, I was enough of a 'hound to know he wasn't proposisionin' me.

                                                                    The old man took me to the Brown. Said somethin' to the cute girl who came by. We shared a gigantic pitcher of martinis, a Hot Brown each, and he told his driver take me to the airport. No check ever came.

                                                                    "Thank you, Your Honor."

                                                                    "My pleasure, young fella."

                                                                    "That was an awesome sandwich!"

                                                                    "I know."

                                                                    1. re: MGZ
                                                                      linguafood Jun 18, 2013 02:27 PM

                                                                      Maybe you should start a blog.

                                                                      1. re: linguafood
                                                                        MGZ Jun 18, 2013 02:51 PM

                                                                        Nah, blogs are self indulgent. Here, I get to interact with all these beautiful, terrific 'hounds. I'm sure you, lingua, understand, my wonderful, thoughtful, and appreciative friend.

                                                                        1. re: linguafood
                                                                          MGZ Jun 18, 2013 03:08 PM

                                                                          By the way, in all honesty, I got a bottle of unmarked bourbon at my office about fourteen months after that lunch. There was a note with it. It read: "II'm sorry, young fellla. I had to do my job."

                                                                          1. re: MGZ
                                                                            enbell Jun 18, 2013 03:52 PM

                                                                            great story

                                                                    2. f
                                                                      fara Jun 15, 2013 05:30 AM

                                                                      I definitely think if a sandwich is open-faced it should say on the menu. Totally different experience.

                                                                      67 Replies
                                                                      1. re: fara
                                                                        HillJ Jun 15, 2013 05:56 AM

                                                                        see this is where Gastron. kinda confused me..menus DO say it. the menu not only reads open faced sandwiches, there are typically photos on the menu as well. So the unexpected (if you don't bother to ask your waiter/waitress) is rare in my experience.

                                                                        and thinking of an eggs benedict as a sandwich would fall under an open faced breakfast sandwich, yes?

                                                                        1. re: HillJ
                                                                          JayL Jun 15, 2013 06:27 AM

                                                                          I also have never been served an open faced swch that wasn't listed as such on the menu.

                                                                          I suppose we're lucky? LoL

                                                                          1. re: JayL
                                                                            HillJ Jun 15, 2013 07:40 AM

                                                                            true! lucky and didn't even know it! :)

                                                                            1. re: JayL
                                                                              John E. Jun 15, 2013 09:16 AM

                                                                              In all of the small town cafes I have eaten in across Minnesota I do not recall the hot beef sandwiches (pork, turkey) being listed as open-faced. It is apparently thought of as general knowedge.

                                                                              1. re: John E.
                                                                                HillJ Jun 15, 2013 09:18 AM

                                                                                Could you further explain "general knowledge" as in...if the sandwich is hot and topped with gravy, cheese or both customers can assume the sandwich will arrive open faced, fork & knife?

                                                                                1. re: HillJ
                                                                                  girloftheworld Jun 15, 2013 09:33 AM

                                                                                  see that is what I think is an "open face" sandwich an fork and knife sandwich.

                                                                                  1. re: HillJ
                                                                                    John E. Jun 15, 2013 09:34 AM

                                                                                    I'm specifically referring to the Hot Beef Sanwich sometimes listed as Hot Beef Commercial. They also come in pork or turkey.

                                                                                    I just did an internet search and apparently using the term 'commercial' is a rural, farm country, Minnesota thing.

                                                                                    I really don't consider these dishes sandwiches no matter what they are called. For instance, I also don't consider a Kentucky Hot Brown a sandwich even though I've never had one, and don't recall ever seeing one on a menue.

                                                                                    1. re: John E.
                                                                                      Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 09:40 AM

                                                                                      John E.
                                                                                      Thank you

                                                                                      1. re: John E.
                                                                                        HillJ Jun 15, 2013 09:42 AM

                                                                                        What do you call these meals?

                                                                                        1. re: HillJ
                                                                                          Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 09:45 AM

                                                                                          some, like the Kentucky Hot Brown I'd call a 'made-to-order' casserole. just as it should be made in a diner.

                                                                                          1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                            HillJ Jun 15, 2013 09:55 AM

                                                                                            Learned something new today, G. I have never heard of a 'made-to-order' casserole before (in a diner).

                                                                                            1. re: HillJ
                                                                                              Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 10:37 AM

                                                                                              neither have I. it's just what I would call it in response to your question. "made-to-order" is diner classic way of preparing nearly everything, save for the "blue plate special" or "specials of the day" which, traditionally were not 'made-to-order' but things like meatloaf and such...

                                                                                          2. re: HillJ
                                                                                            John E. Jun 15, 2013 10:39 AM


                                                                                        2. re: HillJ
                                                                                          Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 09:38 AM

                                                                                          French Dip included?

                                                                                    2. re: HillJ
                                                                                      Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 08:45 AM

                                                                                      please show me where any menu in the "NY NJ Conn tri-state area." states a reuben is served open face(d). Web site menu, photo of a menu. I'm SURE you'll find one, there are exceptions everywhere. The majority do not list a reuben on the hot open sandwich menu.

                                                                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                        Firegoat Jun 15, 2013 08:50 AM

                                                                                        2nd one under a google search.

                                                                                        1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                          HillJ Jun 15, 2013 08:54 AM

                                                                                          I know...it's NOT hard to disprove...but I'd love for Gastro to show us a menu where the reuben stands alone under sandwiches but arrives to the table as a hot open faced sandwich.

                                                                                          1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                            Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 09:35 AM

                                                                                            thanks for the Manhattan reply

                                                                                          2. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                            HillJ Jun 15, 2013 08:52 AM

                                                                                            Gastro. I'm not entering into some sort of race to the finish line with you about the state of reuben's and their rightful place on the hot open faced sandwich rung. I can only share that your experience and mine are in fact very different. And, when it comes to how my meal arrives on the plate we also part ways on what pleases us. I'm looking for the fork, the knife, the pile of napkins at the ready, my cup of Joe and my meal companions conversation-nothing more.

                                                                                            The issue you have is your right. I'd still have lunch with you anytime. Just don't poke around my plate to make a point while we're eating :)

                                                                                            1. re: HillJ
                                                                                              Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 09:33 AM

                                                                                              yes. lunch soon. at a New Jersey diner for sure. But the conversation will inevitably be about the food.

                                                                                              1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                HillJ Jun 15, 2013 09:41 AM

                                                                                                Gastro, I'm not a one-note conversation my friend. I'd expect your A game on every topic!

                                                                                                1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                  Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 09:42 AM

                                                                                                  page 7 I think:


                                                                                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                    HillJ Jun 15, 2013 09:47 AM

                                                                                                    Now the words "open faced" don't appear anywhere on that menu. Not egg bene., not hot sandwiches, not burgers, etc. so how would you approach this? Asking ahead of ordering how the meal would arrive; open or closed? Without photos and no reference to open faced style...

                                                                                                    1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                      Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 10:48 AM

                                                                                                      egg bene page two of that above menu. That menu is also somewhat different in person than on the website.

                                                                                                      if you scroll down on the link below you will see "hot Open Sandwiches" listed:


                                                                                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                        HillJ Jun 15, 2013 10:50 AM

                                                                                                        I gotta be honest, G. It's far more fun to eat these menu items then debate opened or closed!! Next week I'll be hunting down a hot open faced sandwich just to cap this interesting discussion on a high note. You made me hungry! I usually enjoy hot sandwiches in cooler weather....

                                                                                                        1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                          Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 11:12 AM

                                                                                                          yes. the cold weather blasts the past few weeks here on LI made me order a hot sandwich, and I got this mess again. So I asked if chowhounds like the fact that it is not listed as open and served open in such a way as to not be able to eat it as a sandwich. Like I stated, the burger is served open as well, but at least I can close it and eat it as a sandwich.

                                                                                                          Happy eating!

                                                                                                      2. re: HillJ
                                                                                                        Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 12:11 PM

                                                                                                        just to belabor the point, in such a place I once ordered a grilled chicken BLT and was served a Triple Decker Deluxe number 3. that was cut into 4 pieces making that a knife and fork ordeal as well. I learned to never order one of those again in one of these places. But the grilled chicken club sandwich at Johnny Rockets is a proper sandwich.

                                                                                                    2. re: HillJ
                                                                                                      MGZ Jun 15, 2013 11:59 AM

                                                                                                      How 'bout I meet you two at Kelly's. I'll buy?

                                                                                                      1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                        Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 12:05 PM

                                                                                                        i'm in!

                                                                                                        (and I already know, 'cause you told me, that the famous reuben is open face(d)! LOL! )

                                                                                                        1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                          HillJ Jun 15, 2013 01:11 PM

                                                                                                          sounds like fun!

                                                                                                          1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                            MGZ Jun 15, 2013 01:41 PM

                                                                                                            In October of '86, we played Asbury Park in a really tough game. Back and forth, all day long. We wound up winnin' on an interception run back.

                                                                                                            Afterwords, Mom invited me and my girlfriend to go to Kelly's with her and her husband. The girl and I got stoned, fooled around a bit, and met Mom in that barroom. That was the last time I could eat a whole Kelly's reuben by myself. My girlfriend watched, had a salad and some fries. We splitl up a week or so later.

                                                                                                            At this point, if I meet y'alll there, how 'bout we settle for a basket of fried mushrooms and one full, well done pastrami reuben to split?

                                                                                                            1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                              HillJ Jun 15, 2013 02:12 PM

                                                                                                              I eat like a bird MGZ, a partner would be ideal.

                                                                                                              1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                                MGZ Jun 17, 2013 07:54 PM

                                                                                                                I eat like a caveman.

                                                                                                                1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                  HillJ Jun 17, 2013 08:00 PM

                                                                                                                  Obviously we're not a match, huh.

                                                                                                                  1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                                    MGZ Jun 17, 2013 08:03 PM

                                                                                                                    Nah, but it doesn't make me appreciate you any less.

                                                                                                                    1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                      HillJ Jun 17, 2013 08:07 PM

                                                                                                                      Same here.

                                                                                                                  2. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                    Gastronomos Jun 17, 2013 08:05 PM


                                                                                                                    1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                      MGZ Jun 17, 2013 08:07 PM

                                                                                                                      Can I have a double? This is really strong weed . . . .

                                                                                                                      1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                        Gastronomos Jun 17, 2013 08:09 PM

                                                                                                                        methinks a drive off this island and down to jersey is in order...

                                                                                                                2. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                  Gastronomos Jun 15, 2013 03:48 PM

                                                                                                                  somehow methinks MGZ and I are too similar and HillJ and I are yogurt loving people that will get along just dandy in a three way... lunch at Kelly's.

                                                                                                                  MGZ, is that a mini or a full order? LOL!

                                                                                                            2. re: MGZ
                                                                                                              Gastronomos Oct 25, 2013 07:11 AM

                                                                                                              Kelly's Reuben

                                                                                                              1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                HillJ Oct 25, 2013 07:18 AM

                                                                                                                Holy smokes!

                                                                                                                1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                  jrvedivici Oct 25, 2013 07:26 AM

                                                                                                                  Oh My!! That looks friggin awesome! How about MGZ renew's his offer to meet buy us lunch there! Dam that looks good, and dam do I love Reuben. There is no greater sandwich sacrilege than a closed face Reben, people who serve those should be burned on a stake.

                                                                                                                  1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                    Gastronomos Oct 25, 2013 07:30 AM

                                                                                                                    don't know why this pic is blurry. the pic looks clear on my phone. I don't usually take photos of my food, but this huge plate of food was...HUGE. What you don't see is the rye bread soaked in a lot of dressing. A LOT.


                                                                                                                    1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                      MGZ Oct 25, 2013 07:31 AM

                                                                                                                      I ain't been seventeen for some time now. Half a pastrami, well done, is all this old stomach can handle these days. It is, however, the gold standard of open faced sandwiches to this day.

                                                                                                                      1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                        jrvedivici Oct 25, 2013 07:42 AM

                                                                                                                        Don't worry get the whole, I'll finish your other half.

                                                                                                                        1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                          Gastronomos Oct 25, 2013 07:51 AM

                                                                                                                          they do have a mini on the menu. it was offered first. I went for the big boy. I will know, most def. to order "well done" and "hold the dressing" next time. there will be a "next time" for sure.

                                                                                                                          it IS $15.99.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                            jrvedivici Oct 25, 2013 08:20 AM

                                                                                                                            Gastro, you know the way I read this you just screwed me outta half a pastrami sandwich.

                                                                                                                            1. re: jrvedivici
                                                                                                                              Gastronomos Oct 25, 2013 03:11 PM

                                                                                                                              nah, Matts a good guy and he'll honor his Open Face(d) Corned Beef Reuben offer I'm sure.

                                                                                                                              Then again, I finished the whole thing in one sitting, sans the over soaked rye bread with way too much dressing...

                                                                                                                              (be sure to order it Matts way, *well done* ! ;-)

                                                                                                                              ...and the best way is to partake in a bit of his (or your) stash...


                                                                                                                              1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                                MGZ Oct 26, 2013 06:21 AM

                                                                                                                                I may twist paper with you, Gastro, by I'm not sure I can afford to feed two hungry, thirsty Dinosaurs. Nonetheless, "Patience, Darlin', Patience" . . . .

                                                                                                                                Not long ago, I made an open-faced, pork roll reuben. The concept was ok, but I think I need to work on the execution a bit. Think about the potential though!

                                                                                                                                1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                  jrvedivici Oct 26, 2013 06:57 AM

                                                                                                                                  That was a pretty funny song and video.

                                                                                                                                  You would have to buy the entire pork roll and shave the slices thin I would imagine, no pre sliced would work I think. Traditional other ingredients or did you change that up as well? Sounds very interesting.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: jrvedivici
                                                                                                                                    MGZ Oct 26, 2013 07:33 AM

                                                                                                                                    I had the guys at my local deli very thinly slice some Trenton Brand. I fried it up, en masse, and set it in a low oven to keep warm. At the same time, I made some saurkraut, the way I always do. I used the same toasted rye, Russian, and Swiss I traditionally would. Assemble. Broil.

                                                                                                                                    In retrospect, my thoughts would be to keep the rye, substitute a bunch of slowly browned onions for the cabbage, some ketchup/mustard/horseradish/whatever condiment for the dressing,* and either American cheese or some type of cheese combination for the Swiss. I remain open to ideas.

                                                                                                                                    *I think this is the lynchpin calculation/decision.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                      Gastronomos Oct 26, 2013 01:32 PM

                                                                                                                                      the slowly browned onions, Yes.
                                                                                                                                      The ketchup mustard or horseradishmustard mix with a stiff pinch of garlic salt as dressing. Pork Roll / Taylor ham... here it comes!

                                                                                                                                  2. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                    Gastronomos Oct 26, 2013 01:25 PM

                                                                                                                                    lookin' forward to a get together to spin something up...

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                                      MGZ Nov 3, 2013 06:34 AM


                                                                                                                                      I'm kinda puttin' my fork down these days. Decided it's time to fly off, scale Mount Sharp, and see if I can hang glide the katabatic winds. YOLO, after all.

                                                                                                                                      I'll check back for a Kelly's run for twelve, my treat, in time (I should be down to stems and seeds by then and NASA has a return trip scheduled). In the meantime, keep fighting the good fight and tasting the good tastes. I've laid by the riverside and planted my weeping willow. Now, I need to roll for a spell.

                                                                                                                                      Fare you well . . . .

                                                                                                                                      1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                        Gastronomos Nov 3, 2013 11:31 AM

                                                                                                                                        Fare you well...
                                                                                                                                        All the birds that were singing are flown, except you alone.

                                                                                                                                        Going to leave this brokedown palace,
                                                                                                                                        On my hand and knees, I will roll, roll, roll.
                                                                                                                                        Make myself a bed in the waterside,
                                                                                                                                        In my time, I will roll, roll roll.

                                                                                                                                        If your journey from the Glenelg area is expected to take nine months to a year with stops along the way, please take pics of the central peak within Gale Crater.



                                                                                                                                        Robert P. Sharp

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                                          MGZ Nov 7, 2013 10:00 AM

                                                                                                                                          Had a moment while waiting on the launch pad with the countdown stalled at forty-four. Thought I'd simply note:

                                                                                                                                          I try my best
                                                                                                                                          To be just like I am
                                                                                                                                          But everybody wants you
                                                                                                                                          To be just like them
                                                                                                                                          They say sing while you slave and I just get bored

                                                                                                                                          1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                            Gastronomos Nov 7, 2013 10:29 AM

                                                                                                                                            Ah, I ain't gonna work for Maggie's pa no more.

                                                                                                                                        2. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                          jrvedivici Nov 7, 2013 10:36 AM

                                                                                                                                          I don't like the sound of this at all!!

                                                                                                                                          Don't think for a second you are going to pull some stunt and not feed this fat kid his open faced sandwich at Kelly's!! I'm going to keep watching the two of you.

                                                                                                                                          Whatever is going on my man, all the best.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: jrvedivici
                                                                                                                                            MGZ Nov 14, 2013 12:00 PM

                                                                                                                                            I pulled into Nazareth, was feelin' about half past dead
                                                                                                                                            I just need some place where I can lay my head
                                                                                                                                            "Hey, mister, can you tell me where a man might find a bed?"
                                                                                                                                            He just grinned and shook my hand, "no" was all he said

                                                                                                                                            Me, I'm not one to go down easy. I went at Miss Fanny with all my charms and power:

                                                                                                                                            I came in like a wrecking ball
                                                                                                                                            I never hit so hard in love
                                                                                                                                            All I wanted was to break your walls
                                                                                                                                            All you ever did was wreck me
                                                                                                                                            I came in like a wrecking ball
                                                                                                                                            Yeah, I just closed my eyes and swung
                                                                                                                                            Left me crouching in a blaze

                                                                                                                                            We subsequently negotiated a mutually agreeable deal. I gotta feed the dog, she'll wait for me on the other side until the day when the 'chute doesn't open . . . .

                                                                                                                                            1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                              Gastronomos Nov 14, 2013 12:31 PM

                                                                                                                                              i can't get all rockabilly like i like to, but...


                                                                                                                                              1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                                                MGZ Nov 14, 2013 12:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                That has always been the point. The hat gets tlipped to honor the honorable, the smile gets shone at those who smile, and the soul gets exposed to those who sing along to their Wilson Pickett records.

                                                                                                                                                Edit: Oh, and fu*k any one who can't figure all this out!

                                                                                                                                                1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                                  girloftheworld Nov 14, 2013 04:29 PM



                                                                                                                                                  1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                                                                                                    MGZ Nov 15, 2013 05:33 AM

                                                                                                                                                    Ah, little pup, you've earned hat tips, smiles, and exposed souls many times.

                                                                                                                                                    Somehow, I've gotta feeling that you realize that Amy Winehouse spoke with the voice of a food geek who believes it takes the limbs of trees he cut himself to make barbecue. And, that Scrumptious Seekers march to the untuned power that is Crazy Horse, if they should happen to roll less than perfect pasta. And, most importantly, Foodies look at Billboard charts and wind up downloading Taylor Swift songs.

                                                                                                                                                    If ever you despair, girl, remember, "You're a 'hound", in my book!

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                                      girloftheworld Nov 16, 2013 04:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                      who is Taylor Swift?

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                                                                                                        MGZ Nov 17, 2013 05:49 AM

                                                                                                                                                        "[W]ho is Taylor Swift?"

                                                                                                                                                        Ask a "foodie". Maybe post the inquiry on Yelp?

                                                                                                                                                        * * *

                                                                                                                                                        Nevertheless, and only with your permission, I'll elaborate, upon the greater notions suggested, in my own "voice" and with my own approach.

                                                                                                                                                        * * *

                                                                                                                                                        The thing is, . . .* sometimes, . . . when the break is good at a local spot, . . . it attracts a lot of guys in wetsuits, with boards strapped to the top of some vessel, and who hail from other places. Now, . . . it's true, some swells will last for more than a few tide turns, so it's valid --** of 'em to show up. Most are solid and respectful. Brothers and Sisters.

                                                                                                                                                        The thing is, . . . there's this local tradition. And, . . . it's a local tradition in a lot of localities. -- Montauk, Manasquan, Sebastian Inlet, Tres Palmas, Rincon, Huntington, wherever. . . .

                                                                                                                                                        The thing is, whenever somebody just shows up, excited, asking about the surf., - - - some local, . . . whether borne out of possessive angst or tribute to tradition, will always answer, "Yeah, it's good, but [pause to spit], you shoulda been here yesterday."

                                                                                                                                                        The thing is, girl, -- sometimes, -- I think you shoulda "been here yesterday". . . .

                                                                                                                                                        More importantly, however, than the fireside chat, -- is the thing salty folks never like to mention when the sun comes back up. . . . The fact is that you can't do anything about yesterday, but you can revel in today, and have an impact upon tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                        *Please read these ellipses as though I'm just sitting back, inhalin' a drag, in front of the red coals and orange-blue flames of a mature fire. (Sorry for the "stage direction").

                                                                                                                                                        ** Please read these dashes as though I'm simply takin' a pull from an unlabeled, clear glass bottle, half full of some amber liquid. Moreover, recall the setting prescribed and the fact that the bottle seems to always stay in my hand. (again my apologies)

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MGZ
                                                                                                                                                          girloftheworld Nov 17, 2013 08:59 AM

                                                                                                                                                          RE:Taylor swift - just messing with ya- somethings ya know whether ya want to or not.

                                                                                                                                                          The pandora box of growing up.

                                                                                                                                                          I like the "stage directions" very Hemingwaylike

                                                                                                                                                          If I see you hiding in the night by a peppercorn tree
                                                                                                                                                          the tree it moves ,lets me see what I wanna see
                                                                                                                                                          a poison gaze´f your mind is all that´s worrying me

                                                                                                                                                          The pictures that I see are seen by no one else but me
                                                                                                                                                          to cause the night to be in sight ,a little point of me
                                                                                                                                                          I imagine nearly anything I want to see

                                                                                                            3. b
                                                                                                              Bkeats Jun 18, 2013 09:28 AM

                                                                                                              I had never thought much about this issue until reading this thread.

                                                                                                              If you believe the story about the origins of the sandwich and the Earl of Sandwich, the point of the sandwich is to "sandwich" something between two pieces of bread so that you can eat it with your hands. No utensils required. In fact, no utensils allowed.

                                                                                                              An open face sandwich flies completely against the purpose of creating a sandwich. Its an oxymoron like MGZ points out.

                                                                                                              A piece of bread with something on top is the antecedent to the sandwich. Its the original trencher. Henceforth, if I want an open faced reuben or turkey sanwich, I shall order its as a trencher. ;)

                                                                                                              11 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: Bkeats
                                                                                                                Firegoat Jun 18, 2013 09:32 AM

                                                                                                                So is a taco or a quesadilla a sandwich?

                                                                                                                1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                                                  John E. Jun 18, 2013 12:25 PM

                                                                                                                  Only if they are made with flour tortillas.

                                                                                                                  1. re: John E.
                                                                                                                    Firegoat Jun 18, 2013 12:29 PM

                                                                                                                    If I make a sandwich with corn bread is it a sandwich?

                                                                                                                    1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                                                      John E. Jun 18, 2013 12:51 PM

                                                                                                                      I think it might be just weird. ; )

                                                                                                                2. re: Bkeats
                                                                                                                  HillJ Jun 18, 2013 09:34 AM

                                                                                                                  I don't think anyone said that the origins of sandwich history included open faced versions but they do exist in modern dining times. As do many other foods we enjoy that have a historical base.

                                                                                                                  If you love your sandwich a certain way-hey, good for you. But I live in the here & now and an open faced option has been on the menus of my youth to the present so I'm ordering one!

                                                                                                                  1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                                    Gastronomos Jun 18, 2013 09:45 AM

                                                                                                                    I'm with you HillJ!! I'm ordering one too!
                                                                                                                    A Hot Open Roast Beef that comes over white bread and plenty of brown gravy and mashed potatoes on the plate! DELISH! Right after I finish my Reuben sandwich between two slices of toasted rye and a schmear of mustard.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                      HillJ Jun 18, 2013 09:58 AM

                                                                                                                      That's the spirit, G!

                                                                                                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                        Bkeats Jun 18, 2013 11:10 AM

                                                                                                                        I'm not saying it doesn't taste good. Just that calling it a sandwich because there is bread is like calling a cocktail a "_____" martini because you serve it in a martini glass (but that's another thread).

                                                                                                                        1. re: Bkeats
                                                                                                                          Gastronomos Jun 18, 2013 11:28 AM

                                                                                                                          Bkeats. I am with you 100%. Chicken a la King has toast under it on a plate and I ain't never heard of nobody calling it a sandwich. But, a sandwich, even when served open face(d) should / could be picked up like a sandwich and eaten as a sandwich. The knife and fork is optional.
                                                                                                                          I don't eat my candy bars with a knife and fork either, but that's another thread...

                                                                                                                    2. re: Bkeats
                                                                                                                      Gastronomos Jun 18, 2013 09:47 AM

                                                                                                                      BKeats, open sandwiches are great, if you know that is what's being offered. A reuben, for example, is a sandwich that, even if served open face(d) should be topped with condiments, mustard for me thanks, and closed and eaten as a sandwich. That is not what many diners of NY, NJ and the surrounding areas do and it's, well... open... for discussion...

                                                                                                                      1. re: Bkeats
                                                                                                                        MGZ Jun 18, 2013 09:59 AM

                                                                                                                        Today, two more struck me:

                                                                                                                        Working vacation


                                                                                                                        Political science

                                                                                                                      2. JMF Jun 21, 2013 09:33 AM

                                                                                                                        I've never ordered or been served an open face sandwich like these nasty looking messes, and I grew up in NY and NJ.

                                                                                                                        The open face sandwiches I am familiar are in the European style. A delicate sandwich where the toppings are more important than the bread, and they are eaten out of hand. the toppings are not wet, and usually less than 1/2" total in thickness, and usually served on a thin slice of firm, tasty bread.


                                                                                                                        9 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: JMF
                                                                                                                          Gastronomos Jun 21, 2013 11:10 AM

                                                                                                                          JMF, imagine trying to lift this wet mess up with your hands! And there is no gravy, just corned beef, too much wet coleslaw, and melted cheese product over two slices semi toasted, and now soggy, rye bead.
                                                                                                                          The web link you posted cites a court case 2006 and references, like I did in my OP, about the North East and continues to accept that two overlapping slices are indeed topped, making this a described and outlined discussion...

                                                                                                                          1. re: JMF
                                                                                                                            HillJ Jun 21, 2013 11:58 AM

                                                                                                                            I've never heard the word delicate used to describe an open faced sandwich.

                                                                                                                            1. re: HillJ
                                                                                                                              JMF Jun 21, 2013 02:37 PM

                                                                                                                              I assume you have never been to Europe?

                                                                                                                              Well, maybe it's because I have European parents. But, I have never seen one of these messy massive so-called sandwiches. Then again, I rarely go to diners either.

                                                                                                                              In grammar school the few times I ate lunch in the cafeteria I saw they served crappy roast beef on gravy on a slice of white bread, but they never called it a sandwich. Just roast beef. I thought the bread was just there as cheap filler.

                                                                                                                              1. re: JMF
                                                                                                                                HillJ Jun 21, 2013 02:43 PM

                                                                                                                                I've been to Europe. I live in NJ. Grew up in and around NY and have eaten in my share of diners. So...

                                                                                                                                I've just never experienced/read such harsh criticism over the specific details of an American open faced sandwich before. This entire thread was a learning experience. But delicate open faced sandwiches doesn't exist in American diners. So my reaction to what you seek was based on what I've grown up understanding an open faced sandwich to be:

                                                                                                                                a large portioned sandwich platter, displayed open face to be eaten with a fork and knife. More times than not a hot meal, served with gravy or cheese or both. Diner food.

                                                                                                                                1. re: JMF
                                                                                                                                  c oliver Jun 21, 2013 08:48 PM

                                                                                                                                  If you didn't eat lunch in the cafeteria, where DID you eat? Just curious.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: c oliver
                                                                                                                                    JMF Jun 22, 2013 04:03 AM

                                                                                                                                    All my Elementary schools when I was growing up were all a few blocks from home. Small, local, neighborhood schools. I went to three. First in Park Slope Brooklyn, then in suburbia NJ, then in Lower Westchester County in suburbia just outside NYC. All students were within walking distance of elementary schools back then, and kids as young as kindergarten were allowed to, no I should say expected to, walk to and from school alone.

                                                                                                                                    In Junior High I usually made my own food and brought to school. High School was within walking distance as well. So home for lunch or to one of the numerous deli's, pizza places, restaurants, etc. within a few blocks of the school.

                                                                                                                                  2. re: JMF
                                                                                                                                    Will Owen Oct 26, 2013 02:13 PM

                                                                                                                                    At the schools I attended in Illinois, this mess of bread, potatoes, meat and gravy was called a Hot Roast Beef Sandwich. It was much more popular with the cafeteria workers than with the students, largely due to the "roast" beef and gravy both having come from cans. I was the kid who'd eat anything but I had problems with that.

                                                                                                                                  3. re: HillJ
                                                                                                                                    girloftheworld Jun 25, 2013 04:35 PM

                                                                                                                                    then dont we cross over to canapes?

                                                                                                                                    1. re: girloftheworld
                                                                                                                                      HillJ Jun 25, 2013 04:36 PM

                                                                                                                                      what's not to enjoy about a canape? sure!

                                                                                                                                2. Gastronomos Jun 22, 2013 05:58 AM

                                                                                                                                  the whole point is so you can take foods you would normally need a plate for and eat them with your hands.


                                                                                                                                  "In the court case in the United States of White City Shopping Ctr., LP v. PR Rests., LLC, 21 Mass. L. Rep. 565 (2006), ..."



                                                                                                                                  I Googled "Images" of "Reuben Sandwich". If interested, please do the same.

                                                                                                                                  as HILLJ argues below, NY, NJ and surrounding areas have many large diner/restaurants (some seating upwards of 500 people in 4 separate dining rooms and actually have 4 kitchens that work separately) that typically serve large platters of food with soup, salad, entrée, potato and vegetable, soft drink or wine and dessert and coffee or tea in one order.
                                                                                                                                  They have a column on their very long menu that describes "Open Face(d) Sandwiches" that usually include Roast Beef and Turkey as well as some other choices. The "Classic Rueben" is not typically, in these large diners, listed under "Open Face(d) Sandwiches" and is often listed separately as a "Classic" or "Special" sandwich. No menu describes the "Open Face" mess you will be served when ordering this two pounds of sauerkraut.
                                                                                                                                  BUT! many if not most patrons know this or are indifferent to it when they are served a very large plate of sauerkraut with a little corned beef/pastrami on it. And most are won over by anything that has melted cheese on it.

                                                                                                                                  I asked in my OP if any chowhound was as indifferent to not being able to pick up the sandwich and eat it.
                                                                                                                                  Google images shows Reuben sandwiches not open fac(d).

                                                                                                                                  1. l
                                                                                                                                    laliz Oct 25, 2013 08:02 AM

                                                                                                                                    I almost always take the top bun/bread slice off of every sandwich because I find almost all sandwiches to be too "bready". I want the filling, not the bread. (exception would be grilled patty melt)
                                                                                                                                    So, although I enjoyed reading this conversation for insight and knowlege purposes, I fall into the almost always open face preference, whether served that way or not.

                                                                                                                                    1. Gastronomos Feb 19, 2014 07:34 AM



                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                                        jrvedivici Feb 19, 2014 08:07 AM

                                                                                                                                        I consider a closed face reuben to be blasphemous!!

                                                                                                                                        1. re: jrvedivici
                                                                                                                                          grampart Feb 19, 2014 08:15 AM

                                                                                                                                          But, if it isn't closed face, it ain't a Rueben!!!

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