I’ve been hearing about this sandwich shop in Ballard for some time now but have never had the opportunity to go because it was in, well, Ballard. Sandwiches are best eaten for lunch and rarely am I in Ballard during the lunch hour. In fact, rarely do I even have access to a car during lunch, much less want to drive to Ballard.

In the rare case that I’ve actually driven to work AND have more than 20 minutes to eat, I take full advantage and go somewhere really good like Melina’s Taco Shop in Queen Anne or Gordito’s in Crown Hill.

But today, the co-worker who has been propping up The Other Coast Cafe sent out an email asking for orders. Because I had no cash and a whole hour available for lunch, I went with him. I figured if it was that good, I’d want to know where exactly in Ballard it was.

Turns out it’s right on Ballard Ave. Huh.
I decided on the Mantooth, after a recommendation. The combination of Capacola, Smoked Gruyere and Cherry Peppers sounded good. Turns out they don’t take credit so I had to borrow cash anyway. 15 minutes (15! How long does it take to put cold cuts on bread?) later we had our sandwich and were out the door.

I have to say that I was very excited to eat my sandwich when I got to work, but unfortunately, it was only OK. All the ingredients were really cold and that really degrades the taste. It feels like you’re eating a sandwich you left in the fridge all day. I hate that in much the same way that I hate the premade salads you find in deli cases at the airport. Tomatoes, meats, and cheeses do not taste better cold. On top of that, the bread used was only so so.

The Other Coast Cafe claims “East Coast Sandwiches served with Northwest Attitude” (I’m not sure what Northwest attitude is. As far as I can tell, people in the Northwest don’t have an attitude, unless it involves which PrAna top at REI looks the best). When I think of sandwiches from the east coast I think of the sandwiches I’ve gotten in New York where the corned beef comes out hot, is 3 inches thick, covered in russian dressing, and served on toasted rye. It’s unfortunate that The Other Coast can’t live up to those expectations.