Though Roxie Food Center on San Jose Avenue is oft recommended on Chowhound and elsewhere for its sandwiches, I just didn't get it. Roxie Special --- ham, mortadella, salami & artichokes, plus cheese --- left me flat taste-wise and bloated from salt. Tony's Tri-tip Special --- cheddar cheese, tri-tip, barbecue sauce, tomatoes, horseradish, jalapeños on sourdough --- had too much overcooked and stringy beef in sappy sauce and unmelted cheese.
Then last month I gave it another chance, dropping by in the morning to order the Breakfast Special --- ham, cheese, egg, bacon plus everything --- that hyperbowler recco'd here,
Ordered on Dutch crunch, finally this was a sandwich to enthuse about. The bread was toasty and fragrant, pepper jack cheese oozed enough to bind everything together, and the fluffy scrambled eggs managed to be airy and juicy at the same time. A little too salty from the combination of bacon and ham in generous proportion, but I fixed that by removing some of the boiled ham. The junior size was close to $9, and more than enough for my breakfast and lunch that day.
The man behind me in line ordered his Breakfast sandwich with Dutch crunch, asking for some of the crumb to be removed, buttered and toasted instead of mayo, subbed avocado for the ham, and salt and pepper plus oil and vinegar on the tomato. That sounded just perfect to me, and I'll copy him next time.
They're cool with substitutions and additions. The staff are gregarious as can be. Now that I've had the Dutch crunch bread, I can understand why this spot is so beloved.
Roxie Food Center
1901 San Jose Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94112
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