My husband and I have a Saturday ritual. We enjoy finding that perfect sandwich spot to enjoy lunch, catch up with the happenings of the week, or even read the paper. We recently moved to Raleigh, North Carolina about 3 months ago and started our search for the perfect sandwich spot.
This isn’t as easy as it looks. The trick is that it not only has to have great sandwiches but also needs to have a certain atmosphere. What can I say, we are picky. The first spot we found was the Bear Rock CafÃ?Â©. The chicken salad was great the first few times I ate there but then I noticed it wasn’t quite consistent. On one occasion the chicken salad tasted a bit sour and I wasn’t sure if this was too much relish or old mayonnaise. I did not get sick so I’ll assume it was too much relish. Other than that one time it has been pretty good but not quite the right fit for atmosphere. Don’t get me wrong. It is very clean and inviting but this is a chain restaurant giving it a commercial feel. Great for some but not the atmosphere we are searching for.
Our next stop was CafÃ?Â© Carolina and Bakery at Cameron Village. Hands down they have the best chicken salad in this town that I’ve tasted so far. They add fresh dill to the chicken salad mix which gives it a very fresh taste. The bread was also fresh, light and soft. My husband has gotten the turkey sandwich which he also has stated was outstanding. They definitely use high quality ingredients and it shows in the final product. Once again, food was great, and it had a clean environment but the atmosphere was still a bit on the commercial side. For most people this atmosphere would work out just fine and I would recommend people to go there to get a great tasting sandwich. However, it is still not the place for our Saturday afternoon routine. We are on the hunt for the somewhat urban spot that has just the right feel and taste!
Third times a charm- I think we’ve found it. The third spot we found is the Village Deli also located at Cameron Village. Atmosphere- we found. This little local spot has a great vibe with light alternative music in the background, outdoor seating, urban- but clean. One could only hope that the food would be good too. And yes, it is a winner. The turkey sandwich with the vidalia onion dressing is fantastic and different than the same old turkey sandwich with mayonnaise. The dressing is sweet and goes perfectly with turkey on a ciabatto roll. My husband has fallen for the chicken philly cheese sandwich which is a new twist on the traditional philly cheese steak sandwich. This is a great hot sandwich with lots of melted cheese over hot chicken and bell peppers served on a warm roll. I even ventured out to get a salad not expecting much but ended up being pleasantly surprised. Fresh sliced pears, walnuts and feta cheese over mixed greens and their dressings are top notch. They sell their dressings, including the vidalia onion dressing, right there at the restaurant for those who want to create their own master pieces at home. I have to say we have found our spot.