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22 Superb Sandwich Shops in NYC

From old-school, meat-stuffed heroes to flavorful and affordable banh mi

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In New York, a sandwich is an argument waiting to happen. While Americans all over can name their favorites, in Manhattan alone, the variety of delis, pita shacks, torta-slinging Mexican cafes, and newfangled American lunch stands is enough to keep any enthusiast of the bread-based meal busy for years.

But each genre has its stars. These are the sandwich-devoted venues both old-school and new to check off the bucket list. And no, burgers still don’t count.

Note: This list is arranged geographically, north to south.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Casa Della Mozzarella

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The old-school shop in Bronx’s Little Italy gets all the credit it deserves for its housemade cheeses, sold alongside other Italian prepared foods and packaged goods. Have the staff fold its exceptional cream-filled burrata and prosciutto into a ciabatta with olives and peppers.

Sal, Kris & Charlie's Deli

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As if to outdo its many deli competitors, this Astoria shop introduced the Bomb, which quickly became cultishly beloved. The footlong beast is awe-inspiring even before consumption, filled with a veritable rainbow of meats and cheeses packed on a crusty sub roll with vegetables: pepperoni, ham, salami, turkey, mortadella, American, Swiss, and provolone. Finishing it deserves some kind of award. Cash only.

Sal, Kris & Charlie's Deli
Tonya J./Yelp

Salumeria Biellese Delicatessen

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Since 1925, this salumeria has been dishing out traditional sausages and cured meats inspired by the Piedmont region of Italy. Its deli menu includes cold cuts, as well as hot heroes like the comforting meatball parm. Cash only.

Salumeria Biellese
Veronica S./Yelp

Shorty's

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Shorty’s claims to serve New York’s “most authentic” Philly-style cheesesteaks, and Philadelphians tend to agree. The mini-chain actually gets its bread shipped from the City of Brotherly Love and then bakes it onsite, making the melty, oozing sandwich truly the closest thing to catching a train for the specialty. There are additional locations in Hell’s Kitchen, the Financial District, and the Upper East Side.

Shorty's
Shorty’s

Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop

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Open since 1929, this Flatiron diner seems to have changed little over time. The narrow luncheonette is stained in grease, and the servers are enjoyably sassy. The deli-style sandwiches are consistently superb, especially the Reuben, which is plenty of food for two.

Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop Photo via Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop/Facebook

One thing New York is not short on is places to grab falafel. Taïm, which translates to tasty in Hebrew, stands out in the West Village not just for its signature chickpea-filled pita, but for the freshness and intense flavors of all its vegetarian dishes, including cauliflower shawarma. Chef Einat Admony and her husband Stefan Nafziger launched the original Nolita outpost in 2005 and are also behind Bar Bolonat. There are additional locations in Midtown East, with ones upcoming in the Financial District and Flatiron.

Taim cauliflower sandwich Courtesy of Einat Admony

Eastern District

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Part grocery with growlers of beers on draft and a remarkable selection of cheeses, Greenpoint’s Eastern District also gets its dairy and meats into some tasty sandwiches. Wash down hot soppressata on a baguette with a local brew.

Eastern District
Steven M./Yelp

La Panineria Italiana

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This Greenwich Village panini bar focuses on the pressed sandwich made simply with refined ingredients imported from Italy, though it has other options like pasta salads and pastries plus wine and beer.

La Panineria
La Panineria/Yelp

Faicco's

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A West Village institution, Faicco’s serves its fragrant sausages and other meats to faithful customers, but it also assembles enviable sandwiches, including a mouth-watering Italian special that’s more animal than anything else, with a dense layering of prosciutto, ham, and soppressata.

Faicco's
Nate B./Yelp

Alidoro

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Alidoro brings Italian delicacies to its over 40 sandwiches, from salami and soppressata to capicola and mortadella, all served on crusty white or whole wheat bread. Prepare for long lunchtime lines of die-hard fans. There are additional locations in Noho and Midtown.

Sunny & Annie's Deli

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Rarely does a bodega sandwich linger in the mind, but this corner store blows away expectations with its crafty renditions. The popular Vietnamese-inspired Pho Real combines beef, cilantro, bean sprouts, basil, and Sriracha in a sub. It doesn’t hurt that the place is open 24 hours.

Sunny & Annie's Deli
Huy H./Yelp

Frankel's Delicatessen & Appetizing

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Upper West Side-raised brothers Zach and Alex Frankel opened Frankel’s to bring Jewish fare to Greenpoint, particularly smoked fish and meats. Get the pastrami with egg and cheese at breakfast, or opt for The Number One bagel with pastrami salmon and dill cucumber.

A pastrami and egg sandwich
Frankel's
Frankel’s

Russ & Daughters

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The tiny Lower East Side shop, dating back to 1914, is still run by the same family and packed every weekend with devotees chatting as they wait in long lines for bagels stuffed with cream cheese and seafood specialties. The number of smoked salmons is dizzying, but also seek out the fish roe and indulgent belly lox. There’s a nearby sit-down cafe and an outpost in the Jewish Museum as well.

Russ & Daughters
Russ & Daughters/Instagram

Parisi Bakery

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A stroll through Little Italy isn’t quite the same without a stop into Parisi Bakery, a bakery established in 1903 that also turns out its own inimitable heros. The admirably uncompromising Dennis melds fried chicken cutlet, prosciutto, mozzarella, tomato, balsamic vinegar, and herbs into one joyful mess. Cash only.

A green storefront with the title Parisi Bakery and people standing out front. Robert Sietsema

Tiny’s Giant Sandwich Shop

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This small Lower East Side counter serves some genuinely hulking sandwiches. The broad menu of mostly American riffs goes from breakfast melts to lunch fare with worthy vegetarian choices. But meat-eaters should pick the tangy Spicy Rizzak, with turkey, bacon, cheddar, tomato, onion, and chipotle mayo on a toasted sesame semolina hero.

Tinys Giant Sandwich Shop
William C./Yelp

Foster Sundry

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While it may technically be a butcher shop, to Bushwick locals Foster Sundry is a destination for the sandwiches it stuffs with rich carnivorous delights. The kitchen slings various biscuits with eggs and ham all day, and its other options get thoughtful toppings, like the Vietnamese-inspired house roast beef with nuoc mam mayo, herbs, and pickled vegetables on a toasted hoagie.

Bread & Spread

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This Dumbo counter serves only what’s in its name, using local ingredients. In addition to breakfast-only offerings, the regular sandwich menu is concise and reliable. Get the popular and meaty porchetta, made with kurobuta pork belly, pickled red onion, arugula, red pepper spread, and aged provolone on ciabatta.

Defonte's Sandwich Shop

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Since 1922, this local Italian sandwich shop has served heaping portions of cured pork on heros to workers and passersby in Red Hook. The signature sub is the colossal Nicky Special, layered with a trio of ham, salami, and capocollo, plus fried slices of eggplant, provolone, and hot peppers mixed with oregano and pickled vegetables. Cash only.

Defonte's Sandwich Shop
Wendy F./Yelp

Court Street Grocers

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The ambitious menu of this Carroll Gardens lunch staple from Eric Finkelstein and Matt Ross, who have since expanded it beyond Brooklyn, varies from popular egg-based breakfast sandwiches to classic heroes, American classics, and vegetarian-friendly options including a broccoli reuben. There are additional locations in Red Hook and Greenwich Village, and soon, a Williamsburg outpost will open in the old Saltie space.

Court Street Grocers
Trevor L./Yelp

Ends Meat

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This whole-animal salumeria in Sunset Park puts its strung-cured meats into some flavor-bomb sandwiches with unusual mixes of toppings. In one highlight, pork pate and bacon make friends with mortadella, kimchi, cilantro, red onions, and mayo.

Ends Meat
Brenda C./Yelp

Don Pepe Tortas y Jugos

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This Sunset Park Mexican spot juices an epic number of fruits and vegetables, but it also makes some mean tortas, or rolls stuffed with an equally diverse number of ingredients, from chorizo to breaded chicken, thrown on a griddle.

Don Pepe Tortas y Jugos
Felicia S./Yelp

Ba Xuyên

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While bánh mì may have become fashionable in all kinds of restaurants, this no-frills Vietnamese restaurant in Sunset Park delivers the sandwich in fine form with a number of variations but no unnecessarily fussy spins. Get one with pate and cold cuts, grilled pork, or meatballs. The pale-green, creamy avocado shake is a favorite accompaniment. Cash only.

Ba Xuyên
Liana L./Yelp

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Casa Della Mozzarella

The old-school shop in Bronx’s Little Italy gets all the credit it deserves for its housemade cheeses, sold alongside other Italian prepared foods and packaged goods. Have the staff fold its exceptional cream-filled burrata and prosciutto into a ciabatta with olives and peppers.

Sal, Kris & Charlie's Deli

Sal, Kris & Charlie's Deli
Tonya J./Yelp

As if to outdo its many deli competitors, this Astoria shop introduced the Bomb, which quickly became cultishly beloved. The footlong beast is awe-inspiring even before consumption, filled with a veritable rainbow of meats and cheeses packed on a crusty sub roll with vegetables: pepperoni, ham, salami, turkey, mortadella, American, Swiss, and provolone. Finishing it deserves some kind of award. Cash only.

Sal, Kris & Charlie's Deli
Tonya J./Yelp

Salumeria Biellese Delicatessen

Salumeria Biellese
Veronica S./Yelp

Since 1925, this salumeria has been dishing out traditional sausages and cured meats inspired by the Piedmont region of Italy. Its deli menu includes cold cuts, as well as hot heroes like the comforting meatball parm. Cash only.

Salumeria Biellese
Veronica S./Yelp

Shorty's

Shorty's
Shorty’s

Shorty’s claims to serve New York’s “most authentic” Philly-style cheesesteaks, and Philadelphians tend to agree. The mini-chain actually gets its bread shipped from the City of Brotherly Love and then bakes it onsite, making the melty, oozing sandwich truly the closest thing to catching a train for the specialty. There are additional locations in Hell’s Kitchen, the Financial District, and the Upper East Side.

Shorty's
Shorty’s

Eisenberg's Sandwich Shop

Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop Photo via Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop/Facebook

Open since 1929, this Flatiron diner seems to have changed little over time. The narrow luncheonette is stained in grease, and the servers are enjoyably sassy. The deli-style sandwiches are consistently superb, especially the Reuben, which is plenty of food for two.

Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop Photo via Eisenberg’s Sandwich Shop/Facebook

Taïm

Taim cauliflower sandwich Courtesy of Einat Admony

One thing New York is not short on is places to grab falafel. Taïm, which translates to tasty in Hebrew, stands out in the West Village not just for its signature chickpea-filled pita, but for the freshness and intense flavors of all its vegetarian dishes, including cauliflower shawarma. Chef Einat Admony and her husband Stefan Nafziger launched the original Nolita outpost in 2005 and are also behind Bar Bolonat. There are additional locations in Midtown East, with ones upcoming in the Financial District and Flatiron.

Taim cauliflower sandwich Courtesy of Einat Admony

Eastern District

Eastern District
Steven M./Yelp

Part grocery with growlers of beers on draft and a remarkable selection of cheeses, Greenpoint’s Eastern District also gets its dairy and meats into some tasty sandwiches. Wash down hot soppressata on a baguette with a local brew.

Eastern District
Steven M./Yelp

La Panineria Italiana

La Panineria
La Panineria/Yelp

This Greenwich Village panini bar focuses on the pressed sandwich made simply with refined ingredients imported from Italy, though it has other options like pasta salads and pastries plus wine and beer.

La Panineria
La Panineria/Yelp

Faicco's

Faicco's
Nate B./Yelp

A West Village institution, Faicco’s serves its fragrant sausages and other meats to faithful customers, but it also assembles enviable sandwiches, including a mouth-watering Italian special that’s more animal than anything else, with a dense layering of prosciutto, ham, and soppressata.

Faicco's
Nate B./Yelp

Alidoro

Alidoro brings Italian delicacies to its over 40 sandwiches, from salami and soppressata to capicola and mortadella, all served on crusty white or whole wheat bread. Prepare for long lunchtime lines of die-hard fans. There are additional locations in Noho and Midtown.

Sunny & Annie's Deli

Sunny & Annie's Deli
Huy H./Yelp

Rarely does a bodega sandwich linger in the mind, but this corner store blows away expectations with its crafty renditions. The popular Vietnamese-inspired Pho Real combines beef, cilantro, bean sprouts, basil, and Sriracha in a sub. It doesn’t hurt that the place is open 24 hours.

Sunny & Annie's Deli
Huy H./Yelp

Frankel's Delicatessen & Appetizing

A pastrami and egg sandwich
Frankel's
Frankel’s

Upper West Side-raised brothers Zach and Alex Frankel opened Frankel’s to bring Jewish fare to Greenpoint, particularly smoked fish and meats. Get the pastrami with egg and cheese at breakfast, or opt for The Number One bagel with pastrami salmon and dill cucumber.