Bodo Bagels – Charlottesville, Virginia
After a brief freshen up at our temporary lodgings for the afternoon, we are recommended to try out Bodo Bagel’s by our friends who are living here. It’s a local chain and has quite a reputation. On the menu there is a big selection of ingredients and a wide variety of bagels to choose from. I opted for a poppy seed bagel with capicola and provolone.
I don’t normally go for bagels but I did enjoy this. The ingredients were tasty and the bagel was of a good quality, although the cheese left a bit to be desired. This was decent but I’m not sure if it deserves the reputation it seems to have. I’m sure there are many places in London and elsewhere that serve filled bagels that far surpass those at Bodo’s.
Market Street Market – Charlottesville, Virginia
It’s the day before our friend’s wedding, the reason for our trip to Charlottesville, and we decide to investigate the town centre with the intention of finding a top notch sandwich outlet. At the top of one side street we notice a market come deli. The menu in the window looked very appetising and we head to the back of the shop and place our orders – one corned beef on rye and one pastrami with Swiss cheese, accompanied by bottles of cream soda.
The pictures say it all, fresh, filling, top quality homemade ingredients and very good bread. The side of pickle is massive compared to the usual thin circles of gherkin were used to in the UK. Brilliant and a must if you happen to visit the area.
Tazza – Brooklyn, New York
An afternoons trip to walk around Brooklyn and we come across Tazza, a café come bar with a wide selection of Panini’s and cakes. I ordered a Brie and Apricot Ciabatta Panini coming in at $6.25. It was really good. A nice light afternoon snack and the taste of the brie lasted the rest of the afternoon, a good find.
Katz’s Deli – New York
Katz’s Deli has a place in Lonely Planet’s top 10 things to do in New York and naturally we thought it rude not to go. The guide says the servings are big enough to feed you for a week and true enough this statements wasn’t far wrong. A huge place and a rather unique way to order, on entering you are given what resembles a raffle ticket before you head over to one of many staff at the counter (A word of note, keep hold of your ticket. Your running total is written on the back and then this needs to be handed in at the counter when you leave. If you lose it, they will charge you over the top!). I ordered a Reuben and from within a steel slow cooker a huge brisket of beef is wrenched out. Little effort is needed to slice the beef, it simply crumbles away. I went for rye bread and the classic combination of sauerkraut, mayonnaise and Swiss cheese were duly added, together with a side of a whole gherkin. Further along the counter you can order pasta dishes desserts and beer, despite this I opt for a cream soda. Look at the pictures in awe, this was epic!
Yes, this does say $15.75 for a sandwich!
What an end to our sandwich exploration of the USA. A special mention must also be made to Café Habana (Enchiladas de Mole Poblano) and the amazing Great Jones Street Café (Jambalaya with corn bread) which both served some of the best food I’ve had. Check out their website here:
Wednesday 28th April 2010, and a long day or so of travel is ahead that will take in car, coach, plane, train and feet. Travel plans for the next 10 days are leave Cardiff and fly from Heathrow to New York JFK, wait for 8 hours to catch a flight to Washington and then on to Charlottesville, Virginia. After staying in Charlottesville for 4 days the journey will be reversed, stopping in New York for 6 days and then returning home to Cardiff.
Breakfast consisted of a fried egg sandwich with brown sauce. A staple that after years of practice I’ve perfected pretty well. For the coach journey I prepare goats cheese with vodka mustard on granary bread, completed with a stylish sandwich bag.
I’m not a fan of travelling by coach but the journey thankfully passes quickly due to excitable talk of holidays and the consumption of the goat’s cheese sandwich, which was very tasty indeed. At this point I shall summarise the airport and flight in figures:
2 films, watched
1 roast beef dinner, consumed
1 Gu chocolate and raspberry compote, enjoyed (ditto 1 Gu brownie)
Several glasses of red wine, guzzled
2 toilet breaks, accomplished
2 special police and sniffer dog checks, passed (!)
2 1litre bottles of duty free Jack Daniels, purchased
And after this, we arrive at New York JFK airport.
USA Day 1 – It’s pretty difficult trying to find a decent sandwich at a major airport at 3:08am, this is the task that is presented to me and as a sandwich clubber with 10 days of American sandwich exploration ahead is a challenge I duly accept.
The only ‘real’ sandwich eatery adorning the predictably sterile and familiarly dull tie rack littered retail outlets is an Upper Crust. Regular rail travellers will be acquainted with it. However, it is closed, and the only other option seems to be Peets Coffee and Tea. I opt for a honey baked ham & swiss (economical with the use of the word ‘cheese’ presumably to avoid any obesity induced corporate lawsuit). Coming in at $7.99 I can only guess that the pre-election Gordon Brown bigot induced nuclear fallout has caused mass inflation and economic panic that I’ve been oblivious to whilst high above the Atlantic ocean for seven and half hours, subsequently resulting in a pretty small sandwich costing $7.99!
It was just about the right side of tasty and the sour dough was a welcome touch however the best way to describe it would be ‘limp’. The ham was soggy, the lettuce wilted and the cheese tasteless. So, first American sandwich of the trip and not a brilliant start.
It was a pleasantly short flight to Washington, Dulles airport and we decide some breakfast is in order. We head to Cosi, apparently because life should be delicious.
If that doesn’t sell you, I don’t know what will. I went for a Cosi Club bagel with egg, bacon, cheese and tomato, price $3.49. It was very nice, lots of egg, although the last time I checked bagels were round and had a hole in the middle.
In Part 2…Some actually amazing sandwiches including Market Street Market deli, Charlottesville and the world famous Katz’s Deli, New York!