Monday, October 20, 2008

Gandolfo's New York Delicatessen

Restaurant: Gandolfo's New York Delicatessen
Address: 6303 Center Street
Genres: Sandwiches
Check Constraints: None
Chain: Yes| More Omaha Locations: Yes

  • Small Soup (Wisconsin Cheese) ($1.99)
  • Cheesecake ($3.49)
  • Drink + Chips ($1.99)
  • 12" Dagwood ($8.99)
If that seems like a lot of food, it's because it is. I was coming off a nasty bout with something or other last week, and my appetite was voracious, to put it mildly. This is a new location in town, it just opened last week, and it opened within very easy distance for us, and they were offering a discount, so we kinda had to try it. It's a pretty standard sandwich place inside, except that instead of waiting at the counter, they have you sit down and they'll bring the sandwich out to you. Everything else, you get to carry yourself. The place is a little small, so if they get decent amounts of business, it's gonna be crowded.

All of this is pretty secondary to the food, though. The Wisconsin cheese soup was a tad heavy on the ham, but the entire taste was ham and cheese, pretty much like eating a ham and cheese sandwich, only without the sandwich. For those who don't read ND-speak, that means it was delicious and you should get some if they have it when you go in.

The cheesecake was very cheesecakey, and I can't say that the slice was undersized. In fact, it was pretty damn formidable, but coulda used some strawberries, as it was a tad on the dry side. Other than that, it was quality, though.

The dagwood... oh man. The dagwood is a monster. Four or five types of meat, a bunch of cheese, mayo, mustard, pickles, onions, tomatoes. It's a big sandwich. If you like a big sandwich, get this. If you like a really big sandwich, get this with extra meat. There is only one sandwich that can compare to this, really, and that's the monster called the Gargantuan, at Jimmy John's. And this one has pickles. Man, I love pickles. If you love pickles and meat and cheese, get this sandwich.


  • Whole Coney Island Gyro ($8.89) (sans mayo)
  • Soup (Wisconsin Cheese) + Drink Combo ($2.49)
The servers at the restaurant called the sandwiches 12", but the online menu and the paper one I picked up call them "whole", which I think is a better term for them since I'm fairly positive the sandwich I ate clocked in over 12". Even given that amount of food, though, the prices here are fairly expensive. It certainly outclasses Subway and Jimmy John's in terms of price per sandwich, but when you're making that consideration you have to take a couple things into account.

I have eaten many a Subway sandwich, and while they're filling and some of them are certainly better for you than a bushel of potatoes in a deep-fryer, you're not going to find the sandwiches themselves winning taste or innovation awards anytime soon. Given that standard, the sandwiches at Jimmy John's come out on top almost unilaterally. The bread's better, the toppings are better, and their only failings when put up against Subway are that customization is lacking and that they do not do any kind of hot subs. Gandolfo's seems to be capitalizing on variety, offering more sandwiches than both the other places (possibly combined, especially since Subway cut back on subs to offer crap like horrible pizzas), and offering them in both hot and cold varieties. The quality of the bread and toppings is at least approximately as good as Jimmy John's, though it would take a few more visits to really determine that. So is it really better? It beats Subway, certainly. When pitted against Jimmy John's that's a harder call for me to make, as I had a hot sub. I certainly enjoyed it more than Quizno's sauce-soaked contraptions.

I suppose I should talk about the sandwich itself at some point. The Coney Island Gyro is roast beef, mozzarella, cheddar, parmesan, lettuce, tomato, onion, butter, and oil and vinegar... it comes with mayo but I ordered it without as too much liquid on my sandwiches is always distressing to me. As a result it came out very good - not too soggy at all. The bread had a flavor, which is nice, and the meat was cooked and seasoned well. The oil and vinegar added a nice little kick, to boot. If you closed your eyes and squinted, it did almost taste like a strange sort of gyro.

The soup was passable, with obvious chunks of bacon giving it a nice ham flavor, but not really wowing me much overall. They rotate soups, but only do one per day, so you've got your pick of a couple over the course of a week. Stick to medium drinks here, as they have a fountain in the dining area and you get refills. I'll eat here again at some point, though in the future I'm more likely to stick to their cold chicken sandwiches, just out of personal preference toward such things.


  • Half/6" Manhattan Transfer ($5.24)
  • Soup (Wisconsin Cheese) + Drink Combo ($2.49)
  • Chocolate Chip Cookie ($1.29)
The Manhattan Transfer is a hot, Italian-type sandwich with cappicola, salami, cheese and other toppings. The menu mentioned butter, which I thought was odd. You didn't really taste it, but I'm sure it made the sandwich a bit more drippy. I do like the bread, and it seemed like a more quality sandwich than any of the other standard sandwich chains mentioned above. It was bigger than most, but it still seemed a tad more expensive for the size. The quality may be worth it however.

The drink combos were a nice change. You could get your drink with either the soup, a deli salad, or your standard bag of chips. The soup was pretty good, but uneventful. It was a much better option than chips, even if it was kind of a small bowl. I might have to try the deli salad next time. The cookie was fairly large. They had a few options under a glass cover on the counter. I doubt they made them there, though.

The next day for breakfast:
  • Radio City ($3-4?)
  • Orange Juice ($1.29?)
[Editor's note: The Radio City and OJ are $3.29 and $1.29 solo, respectively, but there's a combo for any sandwich plus orange juice for $3.99]

Now, the Radio City is a breakfast sandwich with ham, eggs, and cheddar. This wasn't part of lunch that day. They had a special event the next day where you'd get a free sandwich when you dine in. I decided to give it a shot and am glad I did. This is also why I don't remember the prices that well. The only sandwich they had for free was the Radio City, but that was not a problem. It was a fairly good sized sandwich with plenty of egg and ham. It could maybe have used a tad more cheese, but it was great anyway. The service was pretty fast, but I think it was because they were just cranking those puppies out that day. This was definitely worth the under-$4 you would normally pay. The orange juice bottle was maybe a bit small for the price, however. If I need to get breakfast on the way to work, I know where I'm going next time.


  • Whole Philly Cream Cheese Steak ($7.49)
  • Salad (Egg Salad) + Drink Combo ($2.49)
I've never had egg salad before, so I can't say how it compares with mama's. It was nearly ice cold and tasted like deviled eggs, but a bit milder. I like deviled eggs, so I liked the egg salad. They give you a full half-pound of it in a small styrofoam bowl, which looked a bit small, but it turned out to be a good amount.

The Philly Cream Cheese Steak sandwich was roast beef shaved/shredded like you would expect in a philly cheesesteak with cream cheese, mozarella, lettuce, tomato, green pepper, onion, steak sauce and butter. The bread it came on was great. I think it was actually better than Jimmy John's. It had a nice crust and was a touch flakey. The sandwich itself worked better than I expected. The cream cheese and steak sauce gave it a bit of a tang and nothing was too overpowering.

The prices are comparable to Penn Station. I'd go there and get a medium reuben and a medium fry and pay about $9. Here I got a large sandwich, a deli salad, and a drink for $10 (before discount). Though I must grant that the medium fry at Penn Station was actually a medium cup of awesome.


snekse said...

I love this place. Do yourself a favor and get an Omaha Smart Card. It has a 20 use BOGO coupon that's good for the 17560 Wright St. location. I'm hoping next year they'll have the 120th & Pacific location on it as well. Keep an eye out at events like Taste of West Omaha for the Smart Card people to be selling the cards for $10 instead of the normal $20.

NinjaDebugger said...

Unfortunately, only one of us is anywhere near 175th, I think.

Moogle said...

That would be me. I need to get out to Taste of West Omaha next time it comes around. I wanted to this year, but I never got the chance.