When people talk about Detroit, they mention the ubiquitous coney dog. However, there are many other types of great food in the Motor City. Recently, my friend the good Doctor and I set out to find some of Detroit’s great sandwiches at delis and sandwich shops around town. Here’s five that we think you should try. If you’ve got other ideas, let us know in the comments and we’ll do our homework!
Food Exchange– “The Big Baby”
The Food Exchange is an east side sandwich shop on Harper near Van Dyke. The “Big Baby,” their flagship item, is a serious sandwich. Start with a huge hamburger, pile on some corned beef, top with lettuce, onion, tomato, pickle and cheese. You are good to go. This sandwich will fill up two people or make it two meals. They also have “Big Baby Fries” which were going to be an impossibility after eating half of this, baby.
Ernie’s Market – “The Special”
Ernie’s Market in Oak Park is a special place. Ernie has been making sandwiches since he was a kid, and he might just be one of the most positive, friendly people you will ever meet. Go in to Ernie’s Market, tell Ernie it’s your first time in the joint, and order “The Special.” It’s a little bit of everything, and a whole lotta’ love. Quality deli ingredients, and fresh toppings on this sandwich will make your mouth water. As he’d say, “Yeah baby!”
Nathan’s Deli – “#11, Rueben on Grilled Rye”
A classic Detroit lunch spot on Jefferson, right outside the core of Downtown, Nathan’s is a sandwich joint worth checking out. Nathan’s isn’t fancy, but they serve it up right. The #11 is a subtle twist on a Detroit favorite, the Reuben. The grilled bread adds and extra layer of crunch and melts the cheese. I’m getting hungry again just writing about it.
Gateway Deli – “The Potato Pancake Sandwich”
Gateway Deli, tucked underneath Fort Washington Plaza, is a great Jewish-style Deli in Downtown. One of their signature sandwiches is the Potato Pancake sandwich, which puts savory corned beef between two house made potato pancakes instead of bread. Comes with special sauce.
Mudgie’s – “The Barrett”
A Corktown deli and eatery that serves high quality sandwiches made with great ingredients. “The Barret” is their take on the Rueben, with high quality Sy Ginsberg corned beef and uses creamy coleslaw instead of sauerkraut. I got mine with tomatoes. If you haven’t been to Mudgie’s then you have got to go. I always go back to try something new, as they’re constantly coming up with new soups and have great specials.