In more normal times, sandwiches are emblematic of our on-the-go New York lifestyles. But even during self-isolation, there is no more perfect and compact food. Whether you’re missing your local BEC (bacon, egg, cheese), a scallion-and-cream-cheese bagel from your bagelry or a funky take on the hero, New York continues to have some of the most experimental and (delicious) sandwiches options around. And lucky for us, many of the city’s best sandwich spots are still available for delivery or takeout.
Here, instead of an English muffin or bagel, eggs are served inside a chewy roti wrap. Inside there’s a Northern Thai-style Sai Oua herbal sausage with eggs, American Cheese and served with a chili jam nam prik (made with roasted chilis, garlic, onions, lime and fish sauce).
When Saltie closed its doors, we wailed and wailed that we might never get the chance to try their "Scuttlebutt" sandwich again. And while we’ve still yet to see the day when we do, owner Caroline Fidanza has brought back Saltie-esque sandwiches at Marlow & Daughters butcher shop, apart of the family of businesses owned by Andrew Tarlow (Achilles Heel, Stranger Wines, Diner, Marlow & Sons and She Wolf Bakery). There are several Italian deli-style options, but our favorite is the chicken schnitzel made on the requisite focaccia bread.
This popular, Big Easy–inspired sandwich shop offers a taste of New Orleans on the outskirts of Chinatown. The shrimp and oyster po'boys are the signature offerings, but fried chicken with gravy is where we put our money.
Hunky Dory’s sandwich is made with celeriac—AKA celery root—an ingredient often left off the main stage. Here, the root vegetable gets braised, breaded and fried before being stacked with contrasting cabbage slaw on Pan de Mie bread.
This Bronx favorite offers up a slice of history with its overflowing deli sandwiches: a window into ye olde New York without having to leave your apartment to taste it.
Legend has it that Hajji’s in East Harlem was the birthplace of the New York sandwich staple, created by Carlos Soto during his 20 years working at the deli (he passed away in 2014). Chopped cheese, or chop cheese, is characterized by a hero roll oozing with melted cheese and ground beef with onions. Today, there is anguish amongst those who grew up eating the sandwich, in part for its cheapness that has since been fetishized at higher-end butcher shops with a much higher mark-up, appropriating it from its humble roots.
Our favorite bodega for sandwiches, Sunny & Annie’s in the East Village has always had a political streak: In fact, during the past few presidential elections, they’ve created sandwiches inspired by the current democratic candidates. Stop by or order in the Biden and Bernie-inspired sandwiches on their menu to see which one you’d prefer.