Mobile’s Best Sandwiches

May 27, 2009 at 7:37 am

Originally posted at Azalea City Food Blog on May 25, 2009.

In 2007 I did an article for ‘Zalea Magazine entitled An Ode to Sandwiches. It was a tour of some of my favorite sandwiches in the Mobile area. Due to restraints on the page a few of my favorites were yanked by the editor so I thought I would drop them off here with a few of my new favorites.

I’ll start with the Mellow Mushroom at the corner of Old Shell and University. Yeah, I know it’s a chain and as a rule I don’t eat at them but the ‘Shroom has an impressive list of hoagies with the Tempeh being the most interesting offering: Tempeh is unfermented, marinated tofu and it is offered on your choice of French or whole wheat bread with mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, Teriyaki, Balsamic vinaigrette, feta, grilled onions, green peppers, mushrooms, and sprouts. The flavors are strong and pungent.

The Roast Duck Panini at the Royal Scam is amazingly decidant while still holding true to the comfort aspect of a sandwich. Along with the duck breast you will find spinach, applewood smoked bacon, Gorgonzola, herb/garlic cheese and balsalmic vinaigrette. Oddly enough, it is not the best sandwich I have had at Dave Rasp’s swanky tapas bar. At one time they offered a vegetarian panini with goat cheese that was hands down the best sandwich I have ever had.

Regency Shopping Center (Airport and University and now Schillenger’s Road) offers two of the best sandwiches starting at Orleans ‘Po Boys which has been kicking out Mobile’s favorite sandwiches for 10 years now. They have award winning traditional ‘Po Boys, but their most popular is not exactly traditional. The Joe Don includes roast beef, ham, Swiss cheese, gravy and LTO. The bread they use is absolutely perfect with a light, crunchy crust and a soft, airy middle.

Fifty yards or so away is La Cucina home of the Tortas Tampiquena which is tailor made for carnivores. This huge sandwich is stuffed with Chorizo (a Spanish sausage), chicken, and a grilled hot dog. They also pile on the cheese, mayonnaise, and LTO.

Looking for an excuse to visit the small Baldwin County community of Crossroads? Stop by the Hurricane Drive-In and try one of the best BBQ pork sandwiches you will ever eat. Thick, tender cubes of slow smoked pork tossed in a sauce that is neither too sweet not too tangy on a large fresh bun. Try it with the world’s best onion rings and a chocolate malt.

The Spot of Tea on Cathedral Square also boasts a healthy list of sandwiches with its two crown jewels being Jeromeo’s Hot Pastramio (pastrami topped with pepper jack, sliced pepperoncini, and Dijon mustard on New York rye) and the best Monte Cristo you will likely ever try.

At the risk of sounding biased, I have to admit that the TuscanWrap at my place, Mars Hill Café, is really tasty. Inside the 12″ whole wheat tortilla you will find homemade pesto mayo, sundried tomatoes, feta cheese, grilled chicken and wilted spinach. It is packed with flavor and healthy to boot. It also pairs well with the pesto pasta salad.

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Stuart Reb Donald

Stuart is a celebrity chef and award winning food writer. Donald performs live cooking demonstrations and penned the cookbook Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor."

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