McAlister’s Deli

7 Mar

Rating: 1 O’Douls Blackout

I live pretty close to McAlister’s Deli and haven’t ever had the urge to go. That’s why things like the Frank card are dangerous. They make you seek out new places in order to get your money’s worth. I figured that this place being packed a majority of the time was a good sign, and headed there for lunch. McAlister’s looks way bigger on the outside than any “deli” has a right to.

First off, fuck this place for calling itself a deli. As far as I’m concerned, delis are places that sell cold cuts and other products (including pasta salads and olives), mostly by weight. This chain store of subs and soups is not a deli. That didn’t bother me too much while I was there, but after the fact it annoyed the fuck out of me. I’ve always seen people walk into local delis and act shocked and offended there is no pizza or some other bizarro item. Does it say delicatessen AND pizzeria? I think a lot southerners don’t know what a deli is because of asshole places like this running around calling themselves  ‘deli.’ Oh, a coffee shop with bagels? DELI! Place with subs? DELI! Yes, most delis will serve you food items like subs, but that’s mainly because they already have all the ingredients. Point being, this place isn’t a fucking deli and delis don’t have to sell pizza, espresso, or whatever bullshit item you associate with your idea of Italian. The more you fucking know.

So you walk into this big building and order at the counter. Right on. I’m a fan of places that allow you to order, they bring you your food later on, and then your server disappears. I order the club, a tea, and the country potato soup. And a muthafuckin chocolate chip cookie because the best part of being an adult is ordering and eating diabetes-bombs whenever you want to. Sometimes I wave a handful of candy bars at kids in nearby lines at the grocery store. Haha, I work 40 hours a week and I can spend every last dime on candy and cookies! Enjoy your naptime and diapers, biiitch. I also make faces at kids behind their parents backs, but that’s beside the point. What was the point? I love cookies. My roommate ordered the reuben and potato salad. We took our number and sat outside. Outside seating is pretty cool too.

I tried the tea and to my surprise it wasn’t very sweet. But it wasn’t very strong, either. Kind of bland for tea. The chocolate cookie was chewy on the inside, crisp on the outside and full of chips. A little flat but worth the buck it cost. After a brief wait the food arrived. My club was basically two quarters of a normal club, which with the soup was  a decent deal at $6.49. The wheat bread was a little dry, the meat was ok but there was very little on the sandwich and it was too thickly sliced for my taste. The mayo was almost non-existent; I wish I had known to ask for extra. All in all it was a mediocre sandwich. The bacon was barely noticeable. The soup was basically a creamy potato soup with some bacon, cheese, and green onions on top. Nothing super, and once the toppings were gone (about 3 spoons in) it was just meh. Boring.

The roomie’s potato salad was tried first, and it was good. Your typical southern potato salad with relish. The reuben was good. Not like “WOW this is good!” but “They didn’t fuck up … it’s good.” His comment was that reubens aren’t tough to make, but a lot of places still fuck them up. So kudos to McAlister’s on on not fucking up.

My overall impression was one of mediocrity. My sandwich wasn’t bad, it was just dry and not that good. Granted, more mayo would have helped, but it wouldn’t have resolved the larger issue. It needed more turkey and ham (thinly sliced) and more bacon, at least. The soup was ok, but nothing I would crave again. Not even the tea was really good or bad.

Simply put, at the end of the day, I would probably never come back here. Not because it was bad, but because it just wasn’t really good. If I’m looking for cheap I’ve got Cook-Out right across the street, and PT’s close by. If I’m looking for subs I have A Taste of Italy, Long Island Eatery and Harris Teeter‘s deli, all less than half a mile away. And if I want to go a bit further, I have Jimmy Johns, Jersey Mikes, and others. Some of which are a better quality, and all of which are better overall. I just can’t understand the draw of this place. It even commits the mortal sin of not serving booze. It basically gave me soap opera-grade amnesia, in which I will have no side-effects other than trying desperately to forget the fuck out of eating here. It’s like a blackout without the drinking. Hence the rating of one O’Douls Blackout.
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