Saturday, August 21, 2004

We love the subs, 'cause they are good to us

I capped off the week Friday evening with a Classic Club with Bacon from the new Quizno's across the street from Sonoma State University. As they say in the commercials, "Mm-mm-mm-mm-mm...toasty." They really do make a fine sandwich at Quizno's. It's that brief pass through the toaster oven that makes the difference.

I'm not a fan of franchise sub sandwiches in general. Subway's much-touted in-house-baked bread tastes like styrofoam, plus they cut the upper slice in a bizarre V-shaped fashion that makes the sandwich nearly impossible to eat without dumping toppings all over oneself. (No wonder that Jared guy lost all that weight — half the calories from each sandwich ended up in his lap, then he threw that wretched bread in the trash.) Port of Subs, which also has an outlet here in town, makes dull, flat-tasting, generally unappetizing fare. Togo's serves up a decent sub — when I worked for the health plan in Santa Rosa, I lunched on their offerings a couple of times a week — but our local branch closed a couple of years back when the owners retired. Sigh.

Quizno's has them all beat, and I'm delighted that they finally opened a pair of outlets here. If there's a branch in your neck of the woods, hie yourself over there and pick up a sub sometime. (Skip their so-called "Philly Cheesesteak," though. The meat is okay, but they slather on this nasty white cheddar cheese sauce that would send true Philadelphians into apoplectic spasms. Just a tip from your Uncle Swan.) A Quizno's Classic Club and a Coca-Cola Slurpee from the 7-Eleven next door, watching the Alton Brown would say, "That's good eats." (Alton would probably cavil at the thought of a franchise sub — toasted or not — and a Slurpee, but unlike him, I am a man of unrefined culinary sensibility and darned proud of it.)

I do miss the spongmonkeys, though. One of the most memorable TV spots ever. "They got a pepper bar!"

Sidebar: the resident students at SSU must be loving life. After decades of not having any form of fast food within speedy reach of the campus — not that anything here is all that far, but nothing was within a ten-minute walk — within just a few months they've gained a Quizno's, a Mickey D's, a Starbucks, one of those Taco Bell/Pizza Hut hybrid joints, and a 7-Eleven, all a stone's chuck across the road. Any of those franchises within such close proximity to a college campus represents a license to print money, at least during the school year.

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