January 23, 2012

Since I began working in Midtown Manhattan I‘ve had a very hard time finding a quality sandwich shop. My co-workers recommended Subway, a recommendation I immediately dismissed. Ess-A-Bagel was a candidate, but I found that I didn’t like their meats or the fact that they only serve their sandwiches on bagels. And then I found Toasties. Although not the best sandwich shop I’ve ever been to, it’s not the worst (and there’s room for improvement).


On my first visit I decided on the Plata (grilled chicken, melted cheddar cheese, guacamole, pico de gallo and romaine lettuce).  I was excited about the pico and guac, sadly, these were the least taste-worthy aspects of the entire sandwich. If a small glob of guac hadn’t’ve hit my plate, I would’ve forgotten that it was there. As for the pico, I’d love to say something about it, but I couldn’t taste it at all. I was hoping it’d give the sandwich some kick, but there was no kick, there wasn’t even a love tap. The melted cheddar is a little overpowering and it quickly becomes the dominant flavor in the sandwich. Even with all of these flavors, the sandwich was quite bland because the grilled chicken is dry, and dry chicken is never good. If I ever order this again, I’d ask for extra guac and pico to see if they actually have a positive impact on the sandwich’s flavor, however, I can’t see myself giving it a second chance.

White Collar Philly

On my second visit I ordered the White Collar Philly (roast beef, melted mozzarella, grilled onions and roasted red peppers). This is yet another poorly made variation of a Philly Cheesesteak. Like chicken parm sandwiches, I cannot find a decent Philly Cheesesteak in Manhattan. The meat was the usual fried ground beef, but I never once tasted the onions or peppers. Come to think of it, I never even saw the onions.

Other places seem to have more meat than cheese on their Philly Cheesesteaks, but Toasties is different. They realize it’s a Philly cheesesteak not a Philly steakcheese, and there’s an abundance of cheese on the sandwich. This made the cheese the lone bright spot of this sandwich. This sandwich made me wonder if the Blue Collar Philly would be better, however, Toasties doesn’t make that so there’s no comparison to be made. Overall, it was a decent attempt at a Philly cheesesteak, but not one I’d be willing to order again.


My final sandwich was the Downtown (turkey and roast beef with Swiss, lettuce, tomato, onion, horseradish and mayo). I believe that roast beef and turkey go well together and should be joined on more sandwiches. Although this was my favorite of the three sandwiches, I couldn’t taste either of the dressings, (I couldn’t even see them on the sandwich) but the meats saved this sandwich. There was more turkey than roast beef, and I was okay with that even though I usually like an even amount of each. The turkey and the roast beef worked well together (well enough for me not to notice that there was a lack of dressing).


Toasties is a little different from other sandwich shops, what with the house music blaring. It’s a little disorienting when you initially walk in and have to figure out what to do to get what you want (there are different lines for salads, soups, and sandwiches). But the system is easily navigated once you get yourself situated. The sandwich prices are higher than I’d like to pay (my average sandwich costs $10.07), but it’s either this or Subway (thus far), so I’ll stick with this.

The sandwich menu is quite diverse, and it’s this diversity that will make me go back and try more sandwiches until I find the one that’s right for me.

The Toasties I reviewed is located at 599 Lexington Ave. ( and they can be found on Twitter @toasties52.