Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Melt Sandwich Shop: Could be Love

If you recall the ending to Top Gun (spoiler alert… if you live in a tree house in New Guinea), when Maverick tells Kelly McGillis he “doesn’t know” how their budding love is going, “…but it’s “lookin good so far”—that pretty much captures the state of things between me and Melt Sandwich Shop in White Plains. In layman’s terms? I know I’m falling in love, but I’m playing it cool… cause I’m Maverick.

Look at this beautiful sandwich:
You’ve got grilled tilapia inside homemade flatbread, topped with mango salsa, jalapenos, cilantro and red onions ($6). It’s actually even tastier than it looks.

But, as is the case with so many corner establishments that start out strong, only to crash and burn in my heart soon after, I only hope that Melt can sustain the genius I see in its flying.

No doubt they are making damn fine sandwiches (and pizza) at this small take-out shop (there are only about eight seats to eat in), but it feels relatively soon to be weighing in—Melt has only been open a little over a month, and time is needed to spot and address any kinks that are sure to make a blip on the radar. This isn’t meant to sound shady, like I’ve already spotted a whole bunch of blips—what I mean instead is, I’m actually a little afraid for the three to four kind souls currently handling production in this itty-bitty shop. Afraid. Because I just can’t fathom how their set-up will handle the crazy demand I predict in the very near future.

Why do I foresee a mad rush? For one, Melt has already gained regular, devoted followers. While I waited for my pulled pork grilled pizza ($8) last Friday, a fellow walked in, suspicious girlfriend in tow, and pointed to the menu listed behind the counter. He excitedly began to explain the concept: 1.) choose a bread (short, flat, or long), 2.) choose a meat from the daily selection of smokes and roasts, and 3.) choose a sandwich combination (like “french onion,” “bacon cheddar,” “philly,” Cuban,” or “spicy”). Dude behind the counter didn't need to say a word. This fellow was a Melt marketing machine. Another time, a different guy came in with his lady friend, announced “I’m back!” and alerted the folks behind the counter that their pizzas were “all the rage” on Chowhound. That same visit, an elderly woman approached the counter and quietly placed her order, “Corned beef, same as always.”

Same as “always”? But, but… this place opened a month ago!
Above you have the Cuban: pork loin, hickory smoked black forest ham, swiss cheese, pickles, spicy Dijon mustard on grilled, homemade flatbread ($7). And herin lies the other reason Melt is set to explode: the flatbread is so wonderfully charred and soft—almost gummy. Do yourself a favor and be sure to order your sandwich on flatbread. The short and long rolls aren’t homemade (although I hear Melt is working to change that), and while soft and fresh, they just don’t hold a candle to the flatbread. Here’s a look at my friend’s sandwich on a “short” roll: grilled chicken with white cheddar ($6):
Very good—the chicken was wonderfully grilled with absolutely no fat, the cheese pleasantly sharp. But the bread? Nothing special. Good, just nothing special.

And what about those “all the rage” pizzas?
This is the already-famous Pulled Pork pizza ($8). Yes. Yes, it is that good. Again, we’ve got that gummy grilled dough, a tangy, chipotle barbecue sauce, sweet red onions, fresh tomatoes, aged white cheddar, and tender, slow roasted shredded pork. Phenomenal. I almost want to tell you not to waste your time with the sandwiches, but I won't because both offerings really are top-notch. It’s whatever you’re in the mood for.

I’ve also experienced the Pomodoro pizza: sun-dried tomatoes, fresh basil, whole milk mozzarella, and pomodoro sauce. ($8)
Nice, but all I can think about is how I need another pulled pork pizza immediately.

And there you have it. I’ll post an update in a few weeks to see how the shop is doing. I hear delivery is on the near horizon.

Stay yummy, Melt. Don’t lose that loving feeling.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll go embarrass myself with Goose for a while.

Melt (website coming soon)
277 Mamaroneck Avenue
White Plains, NY 10605
(914) 358-1364


  1. OMG Maverick, everything looks so fresh and delicious!

  2. That's right, Ice...Man. It is fresh and delicious.

  3. Those are great shots Mav. You should be a photographer!