The reason why we left Portland so early was we needed to arrive in Seattle by 10:45am. Why the precise time? Well, the place we were visiting consistently has lineups around the block unless you are one of the first few to arrive. The place is Salumi which happens to be Mario Batali's father's deli. I often wonder if we blindly flock to these places because they are famous for being well, famous. Salumi has been featured on Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations and the Food Network. Are the sandwiches there really that good or is it merely hype? Well, Viv and I put that theory to the test as we successfully arrived at Salumi by 10:45am. It was so plain on the outside, we actually drove right by it the first time. Again, we were lucky to get a parking space right across the street and took our time strolling across the street into the 2 person lineup. Yes, we were 3rd in line, not bad considering that I hate lineups.
With exceedingly high expectations, we entered the deli with money in one hand and not really all that much appetite since we only finished breakfast less than 3 hours ago. My sandwich of choice was the Prosciutto, Figs and Goat Cheese on Ciabatta. Viv decided on the Muffo. To our dismay, the sandwiches were premade (albeit probably not too long ago). The server merely walked into the cooler and fetched them for us. For a $9.50 sandwich, I'd expect freshly made. The result? Chewy bread and cold ingredients. And as for those ingredients, if you look at the pictures, there wasn't much of it either. I do understand that a few slices of prosciutto go a long way since it is quite salty. However, if you are only going to stuff my sandwich with a few slices, please do not charge me almost $10.00. Don't get me wrong, Viv and I truly enjoyed our sandwiches. The combination of flavours were well-balanced and unique. I thought the saltiness of the prosciutto was perfectly offset by the sweet figs and smooth goat cheese.
The bottom line is that I liked our sandwiches from Salumi despite the price and that they were not freshly made right in front of me. However, in my opinion, Salumi is over-hyped. For nearly $10.00, I did not feel that we got good value. And this is taking into account the quality of the ingredients and the well-designed flavour combinations. But if you want, Salumi is still one of those places you have to visit at least once to see for yourselves.
*Note* - follow up visit can be found here.
- Well-balanced and tasty sandwiches
- It's one of those "have to experience" places
- Quality ingredients
- Expensive for what you get
- Pre-made sandwiches for $10?
- You need to lineup