Meat & Bread, Gastown
5 May 2018
There’s one thing that, no matter how much fancy stuff goes down my gullet I will always have time for, and that’s an amazing sandwich. Ever since I experienced my first Subway whilst working at Woolies supermarket as a teen, I’ve been in love with sandwiches. You might be wondering a few things:
- How did I go that long before experiencing the joys of a sandwich?
- I didn’t mind sandwiches, but…that first meatball sub really did it for me. The idea that a sandwich could be hot and not just filled with cold cuts! This was something that I experienced purely by chance. Delicious chance.
- Subway is terrible! You’re terrible!
- You either have never had the meatball sub, or have some sort of disdain for microwaved meat covered in sour tomato sauce. I personally don’t know how you all live with yourselves.
In any case! Imagine my excitement when I found out Vancouver is home to Meat & Bread, a premier sandwich house! So as soon as I could, I persuaded the anti-sandwich half of Lily & Ouk out for a bread date.
And then I failed. So the first time I tried going to Meat & Bread, I double checked their opening hours and confirmed that they close at 4pm. It was 2:30 and I figured, yeah I can make that. So off I go and I get there at around 3:20 only to be presented with a shopfront with all its chairs packed away. So pro-tip: Meat & Bread will close as soon as they run out of bread for the day. I have no idea when that happened on this particular day, but what I DO know is that it happened before 3:20/
So…no sandwich that day. I am persistent though, and on the second try was greeted with a shop that was open! The decor is cool, shooting for a classic deli approach with a modern twist. Imagine a giant board on the wall with menu items, except it’s not dirty.
So the first sandwich we got was the Buffalo chicken ($9.50) sandwich. This sandwich was a bit ehh to be honest. Firstly, I was expecting deep fried chicken, so there was that miscommunication but other than that, it just…didn’t wow me. The chicken seems to be a shredded breast meat that is coated in a mild buffalo wing like sauce with a bit of spice to it. It’s a nice sauce, but it covers absolutely everything and I couldn’t tell the difference between the ranch, the slaw or the chicken.
Out of all the bird meats in the world, I’d say that chicken breast is my least favourite. It’s excessively dry and doesn’t have that fatty flavour that its leggy counterparts have in abundance. The inclusion of breast meat here is something my waist is probably thankful for, but my mouth wasn’t thrilled about. I wished that there was thigh meat, or as mentioned before, deep fried chicken.
Upon reading that, it’s hard to hide how fat I sound, but hey! Flavour is flavour.
In positive news, the bread is fantastic! Crusty, dense, just a great sandwich bread – freshly cooked too, I believe.
The second sandwich we ordered was the Meatball ($9.50). You might have noticed that I have a weakness for meatball subs and this was no different, this was a dam fine meatball sub. Everything about this sub showed why Meat & Bread are considered top tier sandwich makers. The meatballs themselves were springy and moist, the marinara sauce was just a tad sour to balance the meat, and the cheese added that creaminess to tie it all together.
One thing in particular to point out was the inclusion of kale. Lily and I are not big kale fans. In fact, I’d probably describe us almost as kale haters. It’s just sharp lettuce! You can imagine how upset we are with the current kale craze, where it is found on literally everything. Somehow though, the kale in this sandwich didn’t seem to affect the taste at all!
My biggest regret here was not ordering one of the porchetta sandwiches – Meat & Bread’s classic. Once we had ordered our sandwiches and sat down, we saw someone else grab one of the porcehttas. The crew pull this big hunka pork love and it was all hot and fresh and man, did it look good.
Next time though.
Meat & Bread
Address: 370 Cambie Street, Vancouver
Meat & Bread also have a store at 1033 Pender Street, Vancouver. Their menus are slightly different, so check out their website before heading out! Also, I think Cambie opens later.