Under $10: The Sandwich Spot (Santa Monica)
The Sandwich Spot
(Nor-Cal sandwich franchise; Santa Monica satellite)
3101 Ocean Park
I’ve been to this joint more than a few times now, and at this point I will comfortably declare that the sandwiches are worth the slight sticker shock. I’m told the bread is flown down from upstate, on the daily. Further, very few things about the sandwich resemble the plastic mold (and taste) of a certain international chain’s $5 footlong (those are available three short blocks down Ocean Park). Westside lunchers, stop waiting in line for your MSG fix at Bay Cities Deli and get yourselves over to Ocean Park for a Roseanne’s or Sandman with Swiss, with everything. “Crunch bread” advised. If you’re doing it right, the total cost should clock in around the same as your average curbside food truck meal – aka, just under one Hamilton. Note that this is a lunchtime joint more or less, but you might ask about the advertised “comedy night” if that’s your bag. (Personally, I can’t wait to flee this part of town once work lets out.)
Comedy LPs ranging from Joe Piscopo to Bill Cosby adorn the walls. Clearly somebody’s a fan of the live prepared routine. Drink machine is self-serve. A mysterious black curtain beneath the drink machine will draw your eye; whatever you do, don’t peek behind the curtain. You’ll find a few sparse tables that will either be too large, or too small; no Goldilocks-approved tables in sight. You’ll find plenty of sunlight. You’ll find sidewalk foot traffic for gawking, while dining. You’ll find yourself being gawked at, through the glass, as you power through some sort of Sandwich Spot sandwich. You’ll find plenty of tatted-up sandwich makers trudging back and forth from the counter to the drink machine during the course of your brief meal. Importantly, you’ll find nothing that reminds you of Bay Cities Deli. But just what are you looking for, in terms of ambiance, exactly? Bring a board game or some cards, if you must. Several lunch bags are walking out the door, so enjoy the fact that it’s not too crowded, grab your too-big or too-little natural wood table, and dig in already.