Ode: A lyric poem in the form of an address to a particular subject, often elevated in style or manner and written in varied or irregular meter. (Google)
It wasn’t difficult to come up with a title for this piece after my recent trip to City Market in Downtown Rochester. It seems like making a sandwich is a very easy thing to do, but the folks behind the green door have somehow found a way to do it in an *elevated manner (see definition above). Even without the technical definition, if we can have an “ode” to joy, we can have an “ode” to a sandwich.
My particular sandwich of choice on this trip was the New York Pastrami. From a “blogging positivity” standpoint, this one was a layup from the get go. That is because I believe pastrami is quite possibly the greatest consumable product in the history of mankind. If I ever stop caring about my heart health and can get my wife to sign a contract saying she won’t divorce me for it, I would turn our current spare bedroom into a pastrami locker. However, my love for pastrami isn’t what made this day at City Market stand out–you can get pastrami anywhere.
The first thing I notice when I walk through the door is the number of people inside. This is a great sign. A packed house during the lunch rush showed me instantly the place is doing something right.
The speed of service is seamless. You select your sandwich of choice on the giant blackboard and let the sandwich artist begin to create it. While my sandwich is being made, it’s just a small shimmy shuffle over to the cashier where I complete the transaction. By the time we’ve completed the financial exchange, the man behind the counter is handing me my sandwich. Apparently it only takes 90 seconds for a dream to come true at City Market.
As I take the sandwich, the first thing I notice is the girth. As a person who is always in fear of not being full after a meal, my anxiety is lowered just from feeling the weight of this thing. Perfect.
I open the white package as if I’m opening my gifts on Christmas morning and the smell of the rye bread hits my nostrils with a mouth-watering force as caraway seeds sprinkle onto my lap. Then I see it. Layers and layers of beautiful pastrami, topped with a slice of Swiss cheese and a healthy amount of slaw.
I dig in for the first bite and quickly realize the extraordinary beauty of what’s happening between these two slices of bread. The amazing taste of pastrami is present while the texture of the slaw adds the perfect amount of crunch. The slaw is just creamy enough to bring everything together without making the bread soggy. This sandwich alone is making my day.
One other thing that makes this place even better. You could easily get two meals from one sandwich (remember the girth?). I, of course, devoured the entire thing because I have no self control. But an average human being could eat half of a sandwich and be comfortably full. Then, you can have the rest for your next meal. Two sandwich meals in one day? Cloud 9.
I should probably also note that you don’t need to love pastrami like I do to love City Market. There are at least two dozen varieties of sandwich to choose from, including the king of sandwiches (the club). They also do warm sandwiches like beef brisket, and Paninis.
If for some reason a sandwich isn’t what you’re looking for, first, I’m not sure I trust you, second, you can also get soup and/or salad at City Market.
Like I explained in my last blog, I’m only focusing on the positive at all of the places I go. However, even if I chose to be a critical restaurant blogger, I’d give City Market a 10/10. A place you absolutely need to try if you haven’t already. If you have, I encourage you to spread your wings and explore the entire menu. You won’t regret it.
If that writing isn’t elevated enough to qualify as an “ode”, I don’t know what is. Regardless, I’m not changing the title.
Be happy, eat happy, and remember the good in everything you consume.