I was gonna write a review of Subway’s Footlong of the Month for October, but it turns out they’re hosting Anytober, which means that almost  every sub they offer is $5 for a footlong.  This is a great deal no matter how you slice it, and you should consider most of my previous Subway reviews to be in full effect.  However, I’d like to focus on one of Subway’s newest subs, the Oven Crisp Chicken.

The Oven Crisp Chicken is perplexing.  The chicken in question is a breaded chicken patty (or two, if you get the footlong) which is posited as a healthier alternative to fast food chicken.  I don’t claim to be an expert on nutritional values, but a quick look shows that it’s not actually very healthy at all.  It’s odd that Subway feels the need to compete so explicitly with McDonald’s style chains, considering that their $5 footlongs were what changed the game in the first place.  But regardless on my reservations regarding the concept, I decided to try the Oven Crisp.

My Oven Crisp Chicken sub included tomatoes, lettuce, cucumbers, and Sweet Onion dressing, which is the permutation recommended by promotional images.  It was actually pretty good.  I’m never crazy about Subway’s lettuce, but I got a small enough amount of it that it didn’t detract from the sandwich overall.  The cucumbers were a refreshing flavor which worked well with the chicken, which was tasty but of uncertain quality.  I didn’t dissect it to be sure, but it didn’t taste or feel like all white breast meat or anything.  I don’t have any issue with the super processed chicken of most fast food companies, but Subway seems like they’d have higher standards.  Anyway, what really made the sub was the Sweet Onion dressing.  It’s pretty forgiving, and with an already decent recipe to work with it really shines.

All in all, the Oven Crisp Chicken was a pretty delicious sub.  I always prefer larger cuts of meat on Subway subs, like chopped chicken or steak, because I think other chains do deli style cold cuts better.  This didn’t disappoint, and I’d recommend picking up the footlong for $5, it’s a great meal.

Jersey Giant  Subs is apparently a household name in the East Lansing area, but they just opened their first location in my neck of the woods, on Westnedge by the Meijer in Portage.  Jersey Giant specializes in “Boardwalk Subs,” which consist of various Italian cured meats and cheeses with veggies.  Pretty standard stuff, but the beauty of it is in the execution.

I had the “Jersey Giant,” which is a foot of ham, capicola, salami and provolone cheese, with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and Italian dressing.  It was phenomenal.  For a seemingly basic sub, it was loaded with flavor and overflowing with toppings.  The meat and cheese were freshly sliced as I entered the shop (by my friend Matt, as it happens), which is a level of quality and freshness that Subway just can’t replicate.  The subs are also huge.  One full sub (roughly 16 inches) is easily two full meals, and mine actually lasted me three.  It’s a great sandwich and a lot of it.

Jersey Giant is a little bit pricey, with 16” subs usually going for between $6-8 alone, without the addition of a side or drink.  It’s actually a great deal for the amount of good food you get, but it’s still something to keep in mind.  I’d recommend Jersey Giant for anyone who enjoys traditional Italian subs and doesn’t mind bringing home extras.

Breakfast at Tiffiny’s is a new restaurant on the former site of Maggie’s, a WMU campus hotspot.  They have a lot to live up to, but with an expansive breakfast and lunch menu, they look to be up to the challenge.  I knew I had to stop by when a writeup in the newspaper mentioned the Goober Burger, a burger which includes peanut butter as an ingredient.

I really need to get a new camera, so I can stop having to use weird, tangentally related pictures from the internet.

The Goober Burger is actually pretty standard, outside of the peanut butter.  It includes a patty, lettuce, and tomato, with the peanut butter (smooth, rather than crunchy) applied to the top bun.  It’s actually really good.  The peanut butter is subtle enough that you might not notice it in every bite, but it adds a fuller, sweeter flavor, and the rest of the ingredients were top notch as well.  I think other, less traditional ingredients could be incorporated to enhance the peanut flavor, drawing from Thai food for example, but as is it’s a great twist on the classic burger paradigm.

The Goober Burger comes with fries or tater tots (which are delicious) and runs for about $6.19.  Breakfast at Tiffiny’s is only open in the morning and early afternoon, so be sure to swing by early to try it.

Smashburger has a number of regional specials, depending on where and when you visit.  One of their latest options is the Windy City Smashburger, a Chicago-themed burger which features Guldan’s mustard on a pretzel bun.  Let’s see how it is!

I’m usually a bit wary of pretzel buns.  I think they work well with chicken, but I’ve never been a huge fan of them on burgers.  Here, though, it’s a great choice.  The combination of strong mustard and pretzel is delicious in its own right, and adding it to a burger with crispy onions and cheese is inspired.  The lettuce and tomato also helped round out the sandwich in a way I felt the BBQ burger I reviewed last time was missing.  All in all, it was a fantastic, filling burger.

The Windy City is a limited-time offer at the Kalamazoo Smashburger, so I’d recommend picking it up sooner rather than later.  It goes great with a milkshake, especially the similarly limited offer Banana milkshake.  Check it out.