by Chelsea Lin - 273 Reviews - 109 List
Philadelphia's got the cheesesteak, New Orleans has the po' boy and they love those mile-high Reubens in New York, but 'round here we want a little of everything when it comes to our sandies. From cheap, juicy banh mi to traditional East Coast-style meat-stacks to sandwich counters manned by four-star chefs, here are our top five best things on sliced bread.
Updated: January 16, 2009
If the half-hour lunchtime line is any indication, this inconspicuous SoMa spot is worth visiting. What looks like a mini-mart hides one of the neighborhood's finest (and cheapest) delis, serving up giant stuffed sammies, mac 'n' cheese, salads made to order and a handful of grab-and-go stuff for when you can't brave the line that snakes through the store.
This Tenderloin storefront specializes in the traditional Vietnamese banh mi--a French-inspired sandwich featuring roast meat and/or pate, cilantro, pickled veggies and mayo on a crusty roll. The pork is most popular here, and will set you back a whopping three bucks.
A cult phenomenon despite outlandish wait times, this Castro spot hidden down 16th Street is known for its laundry list of weirdly named sandos (try the Backstabber, Elvis Keith or Sometimes I'm a Vegetarian) baked to order with love by proprietor Ike and his team. Vegetarians and vegans are especially happy here, as the list of veggie sandwiches is just as long as the meat one, and includes faux turkey, bacon and the works.
They say it's hard to find an East Coast-style deli here in the city, but those in the know head to this Nob Hill favorite for old-school Reubens (with corned beef, pastrami, turkey or brisket) and mile-high sandwiches with chopped chicken livers, meatloaf, kosher salami and any combination of ingredients you can imagine.