This week begins the final round of the Sub’r Bowl. W. D. Deli isn’t strictly speaking a sub shop, but we were coming up short on reputable places to fill out the Local Sub Shop Division. However, since you can order any sandwich combination you like on a hoagie roll, you might call it the ultimate customizable sub shop. It’s all in how you look at it.
The main thing W. D. Deli has going for it is that it’s located in proximity to Brackenridge Park and next door (more or less) to Half Price Books. Yes, they make nice, high-end gourmet sandwiches, but it’s often packed with a long line and limited seating. Fortunately we went much later than the usual lunch crowd, and the place was practically deserted. We were able to order right away, and our food came out fairly quickly. Definitely noted for future visits.
While you can pretty much order anything you like, W. D. has a menu of specialty sandwiches that come with a side. That menu happens to include a sandwich called “Wayne’s Excellent Hoagie,” which is a cold cuts hoagie with Italian dressing. It’s not exactly the Italian sub I’ve been ordering at most places, but it’s close enough for me. It’s basically ham, salami, provolone, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, Italian dressing and mayo on a hoagie roll, but they have an added twist of crushed red peppers (not hot peppers). For the side I ordered a cup of tomato basil soup.
The “hoagie” was actually quite a bit smaller than what you might think of a hoagie to be; it might have been 6 inches long, but it seemed pretty small for $7.75. I could taste the high quality of the ingredients, though, and the flavors were very nicely balanced to make a good tasting hoagie, the highlight being the crushed red peppers. As if the smallness of it wasn’t bad enough, I had to split the hoagie in half with Greg, because he decided that a pannini was a qualified entry into the Sub’r Bowl. On the up side, I got half a pannini, which was quite good… for a non-sub sandwich.
Fortunately for your $7.75, you get a really nice selection of sides, which includes potato salad, pasta salad, fruit salad, soup, caesar salad, apples, carrots and potato chips. The soup and fruit salad are $1 extra, but, as the tomato basil soup sounded really appetizing, I spent the extra $1 for it. It turned out to be a dollar well spent, though it’s hard to say whether a sandwich and a cup of soup is really worth nearly $9. In my opinion the taste and quality made it well worth it, however I can’t really justify that kind out outlay for lunch on a regular basis.
Finally, there is something to be said about the drink selection. While there is a good selection of fountain drinks, W. D. Deli also offers some interesting choices in freshly brewed teas, including fruity and minty varieties. Like everything else, the drinks are somewhat pricey, but the teas are really good and make you not mind the price so much. Unlike the other places we went to, the tea was more than just something to drink with your sandwich — it contributed to the overall enjoyment of the meal.
I rated the following categories:
- Bread: 3
- Sandwich Stuff: 6
- Price/Value: 3
- Non-sandwich Stuff: 6
- Bonus points: 0
- Total: 18 points
While there isn’t anything particularly outstanding about W. D. Deli, it was the little things that made it a strong finisher in the Local Sub Shop division. The high quality ingredients, variety of sides and selection of unique teas makes it a place I will visit again, but only in times of economic plenty.