Today’s post is a little different.  In addition to blogging about sandwiches, I also write for the Western Herald, Western Michigan University’s student newspaper.  I generally cover crime/public safety and breaking news over there.  As part of our restaurant guide, I wrote up a list of the best sandwiches in Kalamazoo in a number of categories, including wraps, vegetarian options, and subs.  For those of you in Kalamazoo, this will be your bible.  For those of you elsewhere, enjoy a glimpse into the local sandwich landscape.  A couple of them will be familiar to long time fans, but there’s plenty of new material.

Super Satisfying Sandwiches

And I suppose now is a good a time as any to plug my other projects, so I will!!  I also write for a local music publication called Kalamazoo Local Music, which provides a great guide to the local music and concert scene.  And if you like Sandwichtalk but wish I blogged about movies and TV shows and cartoons instead, fear not!!  I run another blog called Gentlemen, Behold!!  that covers different pop culture topics.  If you like Sandwichtalk, I’ll go out on a limb and say you’ll probably enjoy GB.

I’ve been a little bit busy with all these different projects, but I hope to keep updating both blogs regularly.  Check back frequently for the latest updates!!

 

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Local hotspot University Roadhouse recently added a couple new entrees to their menu.  Among them was the Georgia Max Burger, a deluxe cheeseburger highly recommended to me by my roommate.  The Georgia Max is an interesting variant on the “Western BBQ” theme which was all the rage last summer.  Instead of simply adding a barbeque sauce, the burger is topped with barbeque pulled pork, as well as cheddar cheese, cajun mayo, and the obligatory crispy onion straws.

Our taste-blockers can't repel deliciousness of that magnitude!!

 As complicated as it sounds, the Georgia Max actually came together pretty well.  I’m a fan of pulled pork in general, and the combination of pork and ground beef wasn’t nearly as jarring as it could’ve been.  The pork was slightly crispy on the edges but still soft throughout, and the cajun mayo added a nice counterbalance to the prominent barbecue flavor.  The texture of the burger was a bit odd, given the combination of soft and crispy elements, but not to the point where it took away from the experience.  Also, as you can tell from the picture, it’s huge, so be sure to order it on an empty stomach.

The Georgia Max costs around $8 as part of a meal, an goes well with either regular or sweet potato fries.  I’d definitely recommend it next time you’re feeling pretty hungry.  It’s a nice twist on what’s now become a stock concept.

P.S.  I also want to thank my grandparents, who surprised me by stopping in town and taking me out for dinner so I could try it.  Thanks Grandma and Grandpa!!

I’ve reviewed Kalamazoo hotspot University Roadhouse once before, when I was disappointed by their Dare Ya Burger.  I was told soon after that by two separate people that the real Roadhouse sandwich I should try is the California Reuben.  About a week ago, I went out for dinner and decided to give the California Reuben a shot.

ROADHOUSE!! *roundhouse kick to face*

Before we get started, I should probably explain exactly what makes a California Reuben different from any run of the mill reuben.  It includes turkey, swiss cheese, coleslaw, and thousand island dressing on sourdough bread.  This kind of turkey-coleslaw variant is sometimes known as a “Rachel” in diner lingo, as opposed to a regular Reuben, which has corned beef and sauerkraut.  Anywho, it’s great.  The taste is different from a reuben, but close enough that fans of the sandwich will probably enjoy it.  The coleslaw is an interesting, flavorful alternative to lettuce, and thousand island dressing provides a nice counterpoint to the turkey.  All in all, it’s a tasty sandwich that’s both traditional in setup and unique in execution.

The California Reuben is available as both an half and full sandwich order, and comes with fries.  It runs for arround $5-8, depending on the size.  It’s a great sandwich, and if you’re ever in Kalamazoo, I’d highly recommend picking one up.

I decided to go with a local hotspot this time! University Roadhouse is a restaurant/bar located just outside of Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo College’s campuses. It offers a number of appetizers, burgers and sandwiches, as well as some pretty good drink specials. For this review, I decided to take on the Dare Ya Burger, the biggest and baddest burger they offer.

A burger worthy of Patrick Swayze.

The Dare Ya Burger features a half pound patty topped with smoked ham, bacon, swiss, cheddar, and pepper jack cheese, and served with lettuce, tomato, red onion and jalapeno peppers. I normally go for this type of over the top excess, but this burger really didn’t come together for me. All of the ingredients would’ve been fine on their own, or even in smaller combinations.  I don’t have any complaints about the quality or preparation of any one part of the sandwich. But making a sandwich is like composing music. You need to have a central theme or idea, and work with that, adding elements that complement your idea and avoiding those that work against it. Rather than being a symphony, the Dare Ya Burger ended up as a cacophony of flavors which at $8, I would be hesitant to recommend to anyone.

I feel bad that my first review of Roadhouse is a negative one. They have a number of other tasty burgers and sandwiches, and hopefully I’ll be posting a more positive review of theirs soon. However, a bad burger is a bad burger, and I’d say to skip the Dare Ya.