I got such great responses to my post a couple of weeks ago about three sandwiches that I tried a few more, all suggested by the hounds.
1.) Falafel sandwich at Azuri Café, 51st near 10th. The falafel are small, crispy and quite flavorful, buried in a variety of salads, pickles and sauces all carefully loaded into a pita by the crusty owner. Best falafel in town? Sure, why not a great sandwich certainly. We have been there three times now in the last week if thats any indication. The owners wife as warm as he is gruff tells me the pitas are baked on-site. I guess they have shwarma and shish kabab and other things but Im into the falafel.
2.) Cuban sandwich at Azucar, 8th Ave. near 55th. A Cuban sandwich is a specific combination of ingredients that you dont mess with like a reuben or a BLT. Pork, ham, cheese, pickles and a little mustard when great they are sublime and when not great they are still pretty good. The one at Azucar gets high marks: the ingredients are solid and the bread is perfect, like a soft, flat French loaf. This is the bread Id liked to have had around my Saigon banh mi last week. The hound who recommended this sandwich suggested having a mojito to wash it down and I pronounce that a good call.
3.) The marinated anchovy and soft-cooked egg sandwich at wichcraft on 12th Ave. between 27th and 28th. This is the one I really liked this sandwich. In fact the whole experience worked for me, including the cool industrial building and long corridor with a wood floor that looks like a 50-yard bowling lane. Sandwich hits on all cylinders, from concept (anchovies and egg? yes!) to execution (add onion and frisee-style greens) to packaging (tightly wrapped and cut in half through the waxed paper.) The bread, square slices, was toasted brown on one side and the toasted side was on the inside. I could even see a yellow spot on the bread where the egg had soaked through. Swoon! Details make this $8 creation a monster. My friend had the broccoli rabe with mozzarella and onions and olives on a roll and that was pretty great too.
One more note: my five weeks here in Manhattan are up. All the pre-travel time I spent searching the board and taking notes and the posts Ive made while here (Im also the weird food guy, if you saw that) paid off in some truly memorable meals. We made it to Babbo, Craft, Artisanal, wd-50, Hearth, Onera, and Blue Ribbon. Also Noodletown, Grand Sichuan, Johns pizza, Di Faras in Brooklyn, Sal & Carmines (great pizza), Russ & Daughters (herring), Heidelberg on 1st Ave, Uncle Nicks Greek, Calle Ocho (mojitos), Sylvias in Harlem, Nice Matin (pissaladiere) and Grays Papaya for some damn fine dogs. And these were just the good places!
And almost all were suggestions from the Manhattan chowhound board. Maybe next time I come out I should try to mix in a museum. Just kidding! I dont know when Ill be back but whenever it is you guys are my first stop. Thanks so much for making my trip that much more fun.