Tuesday, 11 March 2008

my sandwich? MY SANDWICH?!

AbsThe cleverly named Chicken-Cran-Almond is exactly what it sounds like. I'm an expert in chicken sandwiches--I order them every single time I eat out--and the BEST thing you can pair chicken with is fruit. (Actually, fruit is tied with cheese. But not together. Unless it's the pineapple cheese Hawaiian thing from Red Robin. That's delicious.) The cranberry is Thanksgiving cranberry from a can and the almonds are also from a grocery store shelf. The chicken is salad bar chicken; technically not cubed but pretty close. I don't know where to get this kind of chicken, but if I did it might be all I ate.

I get the Chicken-Cran-Almond at least once a month when the stars align and I'm both a) so hungry that I can overcome my laziness and get out of my office and walk across the street to the cafe-slash-coffee-shop-that-is-only- still-in-business-because-it's-next-to-a-college-and-so-they-don't -really-have-to-try and b) wiling to ignore all the drawbacks of said cafe.

For example, tt's nautical themed. I'm talking boats, portholes, oars, helms, starboard, poop deck, etc, etc. AND it has a totally weak sauce logo featuring a banana and a watermelon forming a sailboat. This place claims to be healthy. Instead of serving their sandwiches with french fries you get a side salad. Instead of having milkshakes they have fruit smoothies. Irritating: "healthy" smoothies are ice cream based. Brownies are bigger than my sandwich. Blended coffee drinks are just as fattening at Starbucks. You aren't healthy. Stop billing yourself that way. You don't need to.

It's sooo slooooow. Before I learned my lesson and started calling in my order ahead of time--and then giving them twice as much time as they predict--I would spend my entire sixty minute lunch break WAITING for my sandwich to be made. Maybe they just don't have enough people working. Maybe they don't have their mise en place. Whatever. It should not take so long to make food.

And worst of all, this place is totally not up to health code. A friend of mine once saw behind the scenes and having experience with health code she complained that she had noticed several violations. I thought that perhaps she was exaggerating. She is, after all, a bit of an aesthetic snob and it was nautical themed. (Like I'm one to talk: I refuse to go to Del Taco because of the logo.) But one day I got there (after multiplying their estimated ready time by two) and my sandwich still wasn't ready. The girl apologized, "I'm sorry, your sandwich isn't ready yet. The health inspector showed up!" Desperately, she looked at me for sympathy and I lied and said I didn't mind waiting. I took a seat next to the waiting inspector as the girl scurried around closing doors, covering toppings, and dialing and redialing the owner who needed to be present for the surprise inspection.

So, it's not easy. But since I'm still too lazy to assemble these lightening ingredients myself (seriously, where does that chicken come from?) I'll accept theirs.

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