Subway vs. Quiznos vs. Jersey Mikes

OK – now I realize this is not quite as touchy a subject as burritos. People love their burritos. And rightfully so. What other meal contains the essentials from every major food group?? (probably lots..hmm). Nevertheless, the debate over who makes a better sub is almost as hotly contested as the debate about burritos.

I am going to take a stab at choosing a winner here.  It will be difficult.

1) When it comes to burritos I am very much an expert. Not really the case with subs. Everyone likes subs. Everyone eats a fair amount of them. Hence, I am no more uniquely qualified than anyone else to pass judgment on the issue. I merely have an opinion. So declaring an outright winner will be tough.

2) Lots of different factors come into play when talking about subs. What do you want on the sub? What kind of bread do you want? Do you want it hot or cold? Do you want lettuce on it (God forbid)? How about banana peppers? All good questions….

These two things will make it tough. But just because something is hard does not mean you should not do it. So here we go….

As with the burritos, I am going to quickly narrow this down to two main competitors…

Subway – Subway gets a bad wrap. It’ cheap. They have like 27 different kinds of bread. They are quick. They have the $5 footlongs. All of these are great things. But when the question is asked “who makes the better sub?”, Subway falls well short. Their bread is always kinda smashed up. The meats look like they just came out of a play dough can. the cheese is kinda funky. They always freakin assume you want lettuce on your sub. Which I don’t. But as soon as the sub gets pushed over to in front of the “toppings” guy, he grabs a hand full of lettuce and goes for the sub and I have to say “AHHH NO LETTUCE!!”. But inevitably, because the dude just stuck his hand in the lettuce holder, a few little strands get onto the sub and dang near ruin the whole thing. When it comes to subs, Subway just is not as good as the competition.

Quiznos – Now Quiznos is really good. They have good bread. They have good meat. It is not freshly sliced, but still pretty good. They have good dressing. For example, if you get the Italian sub you actually get some Italian dressing on it. It’s part of the sub. You do not have to ask for it. Since the Italian sub is my sub of choice at most sub joints, this is huge! The other thing about Quiznos all their subs are toasted. When they put your sandwich on that little conveyor belt you know it’s going to come out on the other side nicely browned and steamy. Love it. One final note, Quiznos has the Sammies. These little bundles of goodness are like pitas but with sub ingredients. The Sonoma Turkey, the Italiano, the Tuscan Chicken. Most of them are pretty good. I think the main downside with Quiznos is the meat. It’s not that fresh. Now the fact that they toast the sub sort of hides this fact so that you do not really notice it. Nonetheless, it can be a little packaged tasting. The other negative to Quiznos is that it is a little pricey compared to other sub joints. (Plus, what the heck is “Quiznos??” Is the word “quizno” a noun? Is it a name? Does some dude named Quizno own the place and it’s his place? I think not. There is no apostrophe before the “s” indicating that “Quiznos” is possessive. SO WHAT THE HECK!?!?!?”

Jersey Mike’s – Jersey Mike’s is also really good. The bread is super good. Never smashed. You can get your sub “Mike’s Way” which makes things really easy. (It’s basically like giving it the works.) You can get your sub hot or cold which is awesome. The best thing about Jersey Mike’s though is clearly the meat!! When you order your sandwich, they reach in the fridge and pull out this massive hunk of meat and go straight for the slicer. All of the meat is freshly sliced right in front of you. So you know you are getting top of the line stuff. Its great. Downside to Jersey Mike’s is that its more expensive than Subway and, depending on what you get, maybe more expensive than Quizno’s. Like if you get two bags of jalepino chips instead of just one, well, you are going to have shell out some cash. But come on, those jalepino chips are so dang good.

Ok so how to decide a winner. This seems obvious to me. The question at hand is simple: who makes a better sub? “But Pat, what matters when making this decision?” I am glad you asked. A sub, in my mind, is basically two things: bread and meat. The rest is just extra. Clearly Subway is out. Smashed bread and meat that they pull out of Lunchable packages. Quiznos comes close. Their bread rocks but the meat is just not as good as Jersey Mike’s! Hence, Jersey Mikes has to be  the winner. This is the only competitor that has mastered both ingredients of the sub. Their meat is fresh and their bread is great.

So yeah, not as controversial as the burrito competition. But this is still a discussion that we should be having. Those of you who feel like this shouldn’t be at the forefront of societal discussion really need to open up and let your feelings out. We need to heal.

Tell me why I am wrong and let me know what you think….

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11 thoughts on “Subway vs. Quiznos vs. Jersey Mikes

  1. Once again I must vote for the one of the western lands… Quizno’s was born in Denver and is still kickin it. Though I do respect the Jared.

  2. What about Firehouse? Also toasted and much better than Quizno’s. I feel like Quizno’s is always dirty…the counter is always pretty messy, and you can’t see the ingredients like you can at Subway, which always makes me wonder what’s going on back there.

  3. I have to say that Subway was the one that started my addiction to buffalo chicken subs, but then they took their subs away. So I switched to Jersey Mikes for those subs (only with banana peppers), which they always have, even though they sometimes don’t list it on the menu. I concur wholeheartedly. Thank you, Mike from Jersey, for keeping the buffalo chicken sub alive. And for not toasting the snot out of subs like subway does (I suppose to hide their mushy bread).

  4. Don’t you have to put in the value of what you are buying in this discussion? The five dollar footlong in this economy is a great deal no matter where you go.

  5. I concur with Jersey Mike’s. They actually give you a substantial helping of meat, too! I hate when places skimp on the meat! Firehouse is good, too.

    Now… I’m curious about your take on Burritos. That sounds like a discussion for another time. Hmm.

  6. Jersey Mikes rules the roast beef category and hot subs category. The roast the beef in house and one slice has more flavor than an entire (shop full of) subway sub(s).

    However, in every other category – Jimmy Johns wins. Fresh bread, great ingredients – all their subs are either $4.50 or $5.50 (not just the three on special), and service, I’ve never been somewhere so quick. (and they deliver to my office – for free).

    Jimmy Johns it is folks. Once again, Pat is wrong (Chipolte Grill = McDonalds)

  7. First of all Pat, you have no right doing a post on subs if you don’t even eat lettuce or tomato. Nevertheless, I agree with you in almost all respects. Subway is just plain terrible. It’s all bread and hardly any meat or toppings. Yeah they’re cheap cause you’re basically paying for bread.

    Jimmy Johns is awful as well, it’s basically a lettuce sandwich that happens to have a tiny bit of turkey.

    Jersey Mike’s is definitely the best, with Quiznos being a great alternate flavor. I have to point out though that “Mike’s Way” is not the works – it’s just lettuce, tomato, onion, oil, vinegar and spices. I get a #7 Mike’s Way minus the onions and sometimes the oil & vinegar. So good..

  8. This should be a no-brainer. Which ethnic group introduced subs (aka heroes, hoagies) to America? Italians, of course! And which state in the United States is known for Italians (besides New York and Rhode Island)? New Jersey (land of Sinatra and the Sopranos.) So Jersey Mike’s, which naturally started in New Jersey, has the best subs, particularly the best Italian cold cut subs.

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