Book of Sandwich, Vol. VIII: Italian Subs
NYC’s 7 best heroes. None of them wear capes.
The classic Italian hero is defined by two very important traits:
Heft, and “take your number and get outta the way” service.
Both of which we intrepidly endured to find the city’s seven best Italian sammies, from a Red Hook gem established in 1922 to a very large something called “The Bomb.”
We recommend trying them all. You won’t soon fugghedaboudit.
Park Italian Gourmet
The place is littered with suits and hard hats alike, so you know they’re onto something. The something we’re onto is the Chicken Parm Hero. The perfectly non-pretentious and piled-high cold cut Italian sub will do you right too. Sometimes a sandwich is six bucks, the next time 10. Just depends on whether they like you. Pro tip: if you want sausage and peppers, get there before 1 PM.
A legit American-Italian family-run experience at your service since 1922. Everything is fresh in-house, down to the mozzarella and sliced to order. Lines form and the joint is, for the most part, grab ‘n’ go. On the weekends, be warned that they’ll run out of the hot stuff — like our fav, The Vinny D (grilled Italian sausage, broccoli rabe, grated parmesan and ricotta) — on the early side. But the real MVP has always been the cold Nicky Special: ham, capicola, salami, provolone, fried eggplant, hot salad, marinated mushrooms, lettuce, tomato and a serious vinegar punch.
ALI (4 images)
In terms of Italian sammies, you might find this one to be on the more precious side — as in lighter on the load and more damaging on the wallet. That being said, it’s f*cking delicious. You can’t go wrong with the Porchetta if you’re a spice lover, but the Fellini (soppressata, fresh mozzarella, hot peppers
FAIC (3 images)
Faicco’s Italian Specialties
Overwhelming in the best possible way. The Italian is seriously loaded with meat and fresh
The Italian Combo is the harmonious balance of crunchy and squishy, salty and savory. It also happens to be located close enough to Penn Station that it makes a convenient grab ‘n’ go train meal. Go with the Sopressata (with fresh mozzarella, pickles, oil, vinegar, hot peppers, lettuce and tomato). Additional toppings are extra, so don’t gripe when you get there. And bring cash.
SAL (4 images)
Sal, Kris & Charlie’s Deli
Nothing compares to The Bomb. The sandwich itself has a cult following, and with good reason. It’s all the Italian meats, American meats, lettuce, tomato, hot and sweet peppers, mustard, mayo, oil and more. Think of it as an Italian Dagwood.
PAN (2 images)
Paneantico Bakery and Cafe
The list of Italian subs on the wall is as long as the jaunt to get to the joint itself, from the simple B1 (prosciutto and mozzarella) to the N93 (