Review: Real Deal

So I’ve been wanting to try out the Real Deal ever since it moved in (it seems our fair main street goes through waves–first too many ice cream stores than seem feasible, now too many sandwich shops) and for one reason or another never seemed to get around to it.

One of those reasons is one I want to at least mention: the potentially super offensive naming of their signature sandwiches.

Here’s the skinny: Real Deal serves salads, pizzas, subs, and probably a whole lot of other things. But the main offerings are sandwiches and wraps, most of which are named after Italian mobsters. (I’m not really up on this enough to know if all the names are historically accurate or not, but I’ve definitely heard of some of them.)

Now, my Sig Fig happens to be a lady of Italian heritage. And she refuses to eat at Real Deal. Which is too bad, because they have some tasty sounding salads. The more I thought about it, the more uncomfortable I became with the sandwich names, in no small part because I realized that if she hadn’t pointed it out I might never have thought twice about it. (Blind spot much?)

Anyway, I wanted to at least try the place and see if the unfortunate names were worth going back for more. Short story: no.

Longer story: the place was packed when I went in at lunchtime, so I ended up carrying out. I don’t think this really impacted the quality of my food, although it certainly would have if I’d ordered something hot. I found myself too uncomfortable to ask for any of the various Italian Adjective Guy Sandwiches, so I ended up ordering a Leo the Lion (chunky chicken salad, bacon, lettuce, tomato, salt & pepper on on an onion roll) with pickles. (Because who doesn’t like pickles?)

I was also pleased to find that they sell Tommy’s Naked Soda, which has long been a favorite. I decided to branch out (I almost always get cream soda) and go for lemon lime, which was unfortunately a bit sweet for my tastes.

They also sell a brand of kettle chips (Deep River) I’ve never heard of, so I grabbed a bag of mesquite bbq. (Pretty much what you’d expect; the mildly frightening bright orange I’ve come to associatie with bbq chips, a bit of sweet, a bit of salty. Overall maybe too sweet, but without a hideous aftertaste sometimes accompanying the flavor.)

Anyway, about half an hour later I finally sat down with my sandwich, and found out its preparer suffered from the unfortunate technique I like to call Disproportionate Overstuffing. This happens when a blob of filling (it sometimes happens with cold cuts, but it’s very common with mixed salads like egg or tuna) isn’t very well spread throughout the bread. As a result, you’ll have some bites that lead to chicken salad in the lap, and others that are nothing but bread and lettuce.

Overall, it was a pretty unremarkable sandwich. The bacon was pretty tasty, although I could have used more. The pickles were quite good but poorly distributed. And the chicken salad was, well, chicken salad.

My verdict: I don’t really feel the need to go again.

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