Numbers Replace “Neighborhood” Sandwiches
by Allan Appel | Sep 10, 2012 12:10 pm
Posted to: Food, Neighborhoods
Say goodbye to The Newhallville, The Dwight, and even the nearby Wooster Square. But Dixwell—also known as pulled pork, red onion, coleslaw, cheddar cheese on a ciabatta—survives. For now.
Those neighborhood-themed sandwiches have largely disappeared from the new menu plaque above the deli counter at the Elm City Market at State and Chapel streets.
Ten months ago the downtown market opened and unveiled 16 sandwiches named after 16 parts of town.
The new menu keeps all the same sandwiches. But all the geographical monikers have been removed except for the three most popular. The Dixwell is also now known as #16. The Green (balsamic grilled portobello mushrooms, arugula, goat cheese, roasted red peppers on focaccia), now can be ordered by calling out #7. And #8 (sliced chicken, pesto, mozzarella, tomato, mixed greens on a ciabatta) still clings to its name, The Downtowner.
Place names such as the city’s parks still adhere to the burritos and to the kid menu. Your child can call out to Terry Williams: “Please give me a PB&J.” Or: “A Lighthouse Point Park, please.” (Williams, who has been with Elm City Market since it opened last November, was recently promoted to deli supervisor.)
The store didn’t originally match the neighborhoods to the 16 sandwiches for any particular reason. “It’s not based on ingredients,” said Assistant Store Manager Bob Shea. Rather, the staff “just wanted to recognize a neighborhood and name a sandwich after them.”
Since then staff noticed that some customers occasionally got confused when they ordered.
Once someone asked Williams for a “Newhavenville” when reading and requesting the former menu’s Newhallville sandwich.
Someone asked him once why pulled pork is the Dixwell (now also the #16). “I made a joke: ‘It’s above my pay grade.’ I made the sandwich and if they liked it, I told them to tell everyone in Dixwell to come in” and order one.
Customer Bill Freitag stopped by the counter Friday and tilted his head up to study the new menu. Then he ordered #11: spicy roasted turkey, roasted red peppers, tomato, pepper jack cheese, chipotle basil mayo on crusty bread.
“You can call it Monte Carlo or Hamden. That’s okay with me. But that’s not going to make a difference to me. I just want to get something to eat and get back to what I’m doing,” said Freitag, a Merrill Lynch employee who arrived in New Haven two weeks ago.
The deli’s kitchen manager, Josh Kosloski, said he has noticed a bump in business over the last week. Whether that has to do with new order-by-the-numbers menu or the beginning of school, he couldn’t say.
Tags: Elm City Market
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