Friday, April 3, 2009

Homegrown Sustainable Sandwich Shop

Why does a sandwich always taste better when someone else makes it for you? I mean, I know what goes into the kind of sandwich I like so theoretically I could whip up the same thing at home. But yet… no. I’ve been on a mini sandwich (as opposed to mini-sandwich, a la slider) kick lately, with a trip to HoneyHole on Capitol Hill and now Homegrown, a new addition to Fremont.

I like the concept of Homegrown. I mean, what sort of earth-friendly, shop-local scrooge would I have to be not to like what they term “sandwich environmentalism”? It's their goal not only to use sustainable ingredients for everything on the menu but also to make sandwich creation sustainable. You see that most obviously in the 100% recyclable and compostable materials they serve on and in, a relatively new trend in food service that seems to be happening more and more. On a local scale with Molly Moon’s ice cream dishes and Coke cups on the UW campus, or on a massive scale as foodservice giant Sysco works to make available a range of biodegradable, compostable, and earth-friendly disposable products.

The space is high-ceilinged without a lot of design frills, the room dominated by enormous chalkboards displaying the menu. The stripped-down d├ęcor is just fine with me as it gives the food a chance to shine.

And shine it does… I had the hot flank steak sandwich, with grilled portobello mushrooms, caramelized onions, blue cheese, chimichurri, and mixed greens. Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a sucker for a steak sandwich, flank or otherwise. My favorite is still the Hilltop Ale House version but in all fairness it’s an apples and oranges comparison. Guess you’ll just have to try them both. Homegrown offers cold sandwiches, soups, and salads as well but on a rainy, blustery day in Seattle I couldn’t look beyond the hot sandwich menu and other options like blackened cod with creole honey mustard, South Carolina slaw, and caramelized onions, or the chicken thigh with bacon, lavender pear butter, goat cheese, and mixed greens.

The sandwiches also come with a taste of one of the side options, all of which are also available in larger sizes for takeaway purposes: South Carolina slaw, apple fennel slaw, and Moroccan carrot slaw. Speaking of takeaway… I bet that they do a booming business on orders-out, so never fear if you only have time to carry and go. But while you’re there consider taking with you a couple of the other things they currently have on display, all offerings from terrific Pacific Northwest companies including Stumptown Coffee, Mighty-O Donuts, and Theo Chocolate.

Homegrown Sandwiches on Urbanspoon

[Photo courtesy of Betsey S.]

4 comments:

  1. I'm all for sustainable, earth friendly business but I dropped $22 and left hungry. If you charge Carnegie Deli prices put a little more product between the slices. I had a small sandwich, similar to what you'd get for lunch from your mom as a kid; a snall cup of watery chili and literally a shot glass sized side of designer slaw. Plus an 'all natural' root beer. I need food that will sustain me and still continue my quest for a good Seattle sandwich! :)

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  2. I totally agree, Tim. Homegrown is definitely of the boutique sandwich variety. If we're talking other sandwiches... I have to imagine that Paseo in Fremont ranks high on your list of filling *and* delicious, yes?

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  3. Ah- I've just checked back and thanks for the counter to my counter. (Does this make this a lunch counter? :) Yes indeed IMHO when it comes to sandwiches- portion is certainly the 'it' factor alongside the quality. Price vs. portion is one of the most overlooked value propositions in the restaurant world. I must visit this Paseo- I have heard of it but never visited. I look forward to the smackdown! :)

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  4. hello, I think you're a terrific writer about this topics and food, and yeah dude, I think you see that most obviously in the 100% recyclable materials they serve on and in, all is relatively.

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