Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Firehouse Subs, Now Open in San Diego, CA

By: guest blogger Narin Johns

Gourmet Pigs was invited to attend Firehouse Subs in Point Loma, San Diego to meet with founder Robin Sorensen and taste some of their featured subs. Robin brings a lot of passion to Firehouse Subs when he describes everything from the humble beginnings of the business to the quality ingredients he personally tastes and sources. Named "Firehouse Subs" because both Robin and his brother - co-founder Chris, started their careers as firefighters and have integrated their experience into the decor, sub names, and even the condiments.

We were treated to some of the most popular items on the menu. The first was the Hook & Ladder Sub.
This was my personal fave -  topped with smoked turkey breast, Virginia honey ham, and melted Monterey Jack served "fully involved" (another firehouse term) meaning loaded with mayo, mustard, lettuce, tomato, onion and a dill pickle on the side. In the first bite, I noticed the bread was fresh baked, slightly crispy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. I was really impressed by the smokiness in the turkey and sweetness of the honey ham - sliced fresh in the store every day, and the melding of flavors with their delicious deli mustard and mayo. Firehouse prides itself in preparing subs using unique steaming method that really brings out the taste - unlike other "hot" subs I've tasted.

Next was The New York Steamer Sub stacked generously with sliced corned beef brisket and pastrami, provolone. mustard, mayo and Italian dressing.

The corned beef and pastrami were again the star flavors and the melted cheese and creamy mayo added even more richness. The deli mustard added a little spice and complemented the saltiness in the pastrami. Of course, no New York sandwich would be complete without a dill pickle on the side.

We also tried the Smokehouse Beef & Cheddar Brisket.

The Brisket itself is smoked for over 10 hours to intensify the flavor. I wish I had tasted more of that smokiness but my sub was slathered in barbeque sauce and mayo. In all fairness the sauce was Sweet Baby Rays- which is a personal favorite and a premium brand, but I could have done with a third of that sauce portion.

As part of their new Healthy and Flavorful menu - which boasts several menu items under 500 calories, we were then treated to the Italian with Grilled Chicken Salad.

It was a pretty standard quick service salad to me however, I was impressed that there was as much meat on this salad as a medium sub, which is more than you expect for a lighter menu item. I also thought there were some other interesting flavor subs on this menu worth trying out including the Sriracha Beef and Turkey&Cranberry.

We ended with a fresh baked lemon cookie and Robin's heartfelt description of their charity - the Firehouse Subs Public Safety foundation - which provides support to natural disasters such as Katrina and life saving equipment to schools, hospitals firehouses, and police stations. It's a big part of the business as franchisees are all involved and can choose who they want to help locally which I thought was really cool for the local communities.

All in all, I thought Firehouse Subs showcased quality in their ingredients which really made a difference in the flavors resembling a local sandwich shop versus a large national franchise. Worth a try if you are craving a sub.

Firehouse Subs
3625 Midway Dr
San Diego, CA 92110
(619) 925-3473
Firehouse Subs on Urbanspoon


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