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Bub and Pop's - Mae and Irv Wagner's Philadelphia-Inspired Sandwiches on 18th and M Street Downtown

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http://www.bubandpops.com/Home_Page.php

I hadn't realized this spot opened in February. I had the chance to drop in for a quick bite last month and was pleased...though I don't want to go too often as the kettle chips are very tempting and quite good.

The day I stopped in I had a Turkey sub, and I loved it as it was shaved thinly, and roasted fresh. Wisely they have the chips on the counter for samples. Wise for them, unwise for me! I bought them and immediately put them in the kitchen when I returned to work so others would eat the majority. ;) It is a family run operation, and it shows. They are extremely friendly and will chat with you if they are slow and you have the time.

Nice to have a non-chain, family restaurant in the franchise-heavy golden triangle. Mr. S went on a different day and tried the brisket and said it was delicious. The menu has lots of appealing items, but almost all are off limits for me due to allergies.

I do hope others will go and report back on the rest of the menu as I think this type of place can easily be missed. (like all their home-made pickles and roast pork sammies) It's in an English Basement and difficult to see from the road. They're also aiming to catch the late-night crowd as they are open 'til 3am.

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The Pops Beef Brisket is my new favorite sandwich in the neighborhood, overtaking TakEatEasy's Chivito, G st. Food's Cuban, and DC Po'Boy Shop's Andouillle Po'Boy.

Now a bad bunch of competitors.

Now I have to go back and try everything else.

And the diet was going so well...

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The Pops Beef Brisket is my new favorite sandwich in the neighborhood, overtaking TakEatEasy's Chivito, G st. Food's Cuban, and DC Po'Boy Shop's Andouillle Po'Boy.

Do you get the Pop's Beef Brisket ($12) with the fried egg (+$1)? I tried it without the egg and actually prefer Taylor's Pattison Avenue for that kind of a sandwich (recognizing, of course, that the latter is pork). Pop's brisket is a fine sandwich, but it was missing an element to really wake it up, like the rabe in Taylor's sandwich. The apple horseradish cream helps, but the cheese dispapears into the meat and there wasn't enough of the cream for it to be the lone counterpoint in the sandwich. The brisket itself, while saturated with meat juice, also managed to still be a bit dry in spots and the bread is very ordinary. A fried egg certainly would have helped the dryness, but also might have just added richness to an already rich sandwich. I think The Real Obama, which pairs the brisket with giardiniera and provolone might be a better call, though I have yet to try it. I did try--ONE--of the kettle chips and would not recommend that anyone else do so, unless he or she plans to get a full order. The one I got was very salty, but delicious. Instead of the chips, I got a side of dill pickle chips ($4), which was nice but overpriced.

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Do you get the Pop's Beef Brisket ($12) with the fried egg (+$1)? I tried it without the egg and actually prefer Taylor's Pattison Avenue for that kind of a sandwich (recognizing, of course, that the latter is pork). Pop's brisket is a fine sandwich, but it was missing an element to really wake it up, like the rabe in Taylor's sandwich. The apple horseradish cream helps, but the cheese dispapears into the meat and there wasn't enough of the cream for it to be the lone counterpoint in the sandwich. The brisket itself, while saturated with meat juice, also managed to still be a bit dry in spots and the bread is very ordinary. A fried egg certainly would have helped the dryness, but also might have just added richness to an already rich sandwich. I think The Real Obama, which pairs the brisket with giardiniera and provolone might be a better call, though I have yet to try it. I did try--ONE--of the kettle chips and would not recommend that anyone else do so, unless he or she plans to get a full order. The one I got was very salty, but delicious. Instead of the chips, I got a side of dill pickle chips ($4), which was nice but overpriced.

I'm actually not a big fan of Taylor's...everything there tastes over-seasoned to me, so that could certainly explain our different reactions. I thought that both the cheese and the horseradish/apple/cream sauce added just enough to complement the brisket without overwhelming it. I didn't have the egg.

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Just got back from lunch. I really liked my roast pork sandwich, even if a bit pricey at $14 ($12 for a whole, $2 for broccoli rabe). I also wish that they would mix the ingredients together before stuffing the sandwich (pet peeve of mine), but I was able to rectify that messily. Overall, I would say that it is quite good, but there is room for improvement. I think that they were heavy handed with the salt on the chips. I also think the prices were not only high, but sometimes not well thought out. It's $2 extra for broccoli rabe, whether you get a half or a whole, which doesn't make sense to me. They were JAMMED pretty much from 12:30 to 1:00 PM, some of that was simply the crowd, but I think that a good chunk of that was not being too swift with their process yet.

Like I said, I like it. I prefer it over Taylor, although it is tough judge since I have only been to Bub and Pop's once. I would say that the chivito is a better sub, but other things that I have had at TakEatEasy haven't been as good. I guess we are going to DC Po'Boy tomorrow to begin judgment on that place as well.

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The Pops Beef Brisket is my new favorite sandwich in the neighborhood, overtaking TakEatEasy's Chivito, G st. Food's Cuban, and DC Po'Boy Shop's Andouillle Po'Boy.

Now a bad bunch of competitors.

Now I have to go back and try everything else.

And the diet was going so well...

I walked by today and on the chalkboard sign it said "cheese steaks- today only" It was so tempting...but the diet won over. (this time) Also, they are now making their own Italian ice (Philadelphia Water Ice)

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I had a half beef brisket sandwich (with fried egg) and a bag of potato chips today. A half sandwich here is a lot of food. I had a long walk back to my office, in a bit of drizzle, but the bread held up reasonably well, and the sandwich was delicious. The chips were unevenly seasoned--those that were lightly seasoned were really great, those that were over-seasoned were too salty. In retrospect, I should have shaken up the bag. I'd be happy to return here.

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That's "wudder ice".

"wooder" according to this linguist. WaPo article in today's paper!

Aren't those pronounced the same? :lol::lol::lol:

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Philly Roast Pork should have the Rabe well-mixed with everything else imo. Pricing for the Rabe regardless of sammy size does seem a bit strange too.

Hmmm, me has to stop by here sometime (maybe late night post-drinking noshing when I'm not thinking about calories lol).

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Somehow, despite working like 2 blocks away and walking near this place (typically up or down 18th or 19th or on M on the other side of the street) for the last few months, I was not aware of its existence until today. I saw someone mention it on Prince of Petworth, then remembered seeing a thread on it here. Since I was indecisive about lunch today, I gave it a shot.

I had a small version of The Real Obama ($8 - Italian beef Chicago style, slow braised beef brisket, giardinera, and aged provolone) and some house-made kettle chips ($2).

The sandwich was plenty of food for me for lunch, but it's not huge. $8 strikes me as a bit steep for the size. All the flavor components of the sandwich were good (juicy brisket, crunch vegetables with a tiny bit of spice, and tangy cheese), but it was ridiculously messy. The beef was piled into the crease of the bread with the cheese and giardinera on top, so the bottom half of the bread was soaked and probably 1/3 of the sandwich just fell out and I had to eat it with a fork after. I maybe would've preferred a little more spice in the giardinera as well. So I guess the verdict on this one is flavor = good but execution = something to be desired.

The chips are a pretty large serving (as in I shouldn't have eaten the whole bag by myself in one sitting), but were fresh and flavorful. I'm a salt-o-holic, but I could see how they would be over-seasoned for some folks. The grease soaking through the bag could also be off-putting, but I thought they were quite good. If I had been sharing with someone else I probably would've also gotten the French onion dip available for $3.

The woman running the register ("Bub" I presume) was friendly and helpful. I knew what I wanted, but she was very good about explaining different options to others in line. And she also came out to check with everyone who was dining in to see if they were enjoying their meal.

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Somehow, despite working like 2 blocks away and walking near this place (typically up or down 18th or 19th or on M on the other side of the street) for the last few months, I was not aware of its existence until today. I saw someone mention it on Prince of Petworth, then remembered seeing a thread on it here. Since I was indecisive about lunch today, I gave it a shot.

I had a small version of The Real Obama ($8 - Italian beef Chicago style, slow braised beef brisket, giardinera, and aged provolone) and some house-made kettle chips ($2).

The sandwich was plenty of food for me for lunch, but it's not huge. $8 strikes me as a bit steep for the size. All the flavor components of the sandwich were good (juicy brisket, crunch vegetables with a tiny bit of spice, and tangy cheese), but it was ridiculously messy. The beef was piled into the crease of the bread with the cheese and giardinera on top, so the bottom half of the bread was soaked and probably 1/3 of the sandwich just fell out and I had to eat it with a fork after. I maybe would've preferred a little more spice in the giardinera as well. So I guess the verdict on this one is flavor = good but execution = something to be desired.

The chips are a pretty large serving (as in I shouldn't have eaten the whole bag by myself in one sitting), but were fresh and flavorful. I'm a salt-o-holic, but I could see how they would be over-seasoned for some folks. The grease soaking through the bag could also be off-putting, but I thought they were quite good. If I had been sharing with someone else I probably would've also gotten the French onion dip available for $3.

The woman running the register ("Bub" I presume) was friendly and helpful. I knew what I wanted, but she was very good about explaining different options to others in line. And she also came out to check with everyone who was dining in to see if they were enjoying their meal.

say hi next time! B)

It's easy to miss, especially since the construction on M St is right in front of them and hides an already hard to find spot. I stopped in today to get me some "wudder" ice--passion fruit. MMMMHHHHH. And yes, the woman at the front is quite nice; the entire operation is family and definitely a great place to support.

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say hi next time! B)

It's easy to miss, especially since the construction on M St is right in front of them and hides an already hard to find spot.

Yes, I had originally noted (erroneously) that it's in the old Maoz space, but an alert member pointed out to me that it's next door.

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say hi next time! B)

It's easy to miss, especially since the construction on M St is right in front of them and hides an already hard to find spot. I stopped in today to get me some "wudder" ice--passion fruit. MMMMHHHHH. And yes, the woman at the front is quite nice; the entire operation is family and definitely a great place to support.

Yes, I had originally noted (erroneously) that it's in the old Maoz space, but an alert member pointed out to me that it's next door.

Yeah, I had assumed it was where Maoz was when thinking of that block, but it's slightly closer to 18th. They did have a black sign out front though listing some of their offerings and specials, plus a couple of tables and chairs (if that helps you spot it). It's just after Ozio's when coming from 18th.

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This plan for Bub's Sunday Table sounds ambitious - particularly the price. (Click for Washingtonian article). It's going to be a monthly 11 course pop-up dinner on Sundays, and the estimated price for most dinners with pairings is $200/person. Washingtonian says Chef/co-owner Taub plans to release more info by the end of the week.

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This plan for Bub's Sunday Table sounds ambitious - particularly the price. (Click for Washingtonian article). It's going to be a monthly 11 course pop-up dinner on Sundays, and the estimated price for most dinners with pairings is $200/person. Washingtonian says Chef/co-owner Taub plans to release more info by the end of the week.

:blink:

"Prices will also vary with the menus, but Taub estimates that most dinners (with pairings) will run $200 a head, comparable to tastings at Komi and CityZen."

Alert to all members: our monthly dues are going up next month to $35,000. I'll be checking from Musha Cay sometime next week to say hello - in the meantime, eat well, drink well, and cheers!

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I went here for lunch today, this was my third time at Bub and Pop's. After thinking about it some, I also think that it will be my last time there.

Today wasn't particularly bad, nothing terrible happened, I just don't think that it is good enough to return to. I think that their prices are high for what you get, everything is oversalted, the menu reads much better than it tastes and all of the sandwiches are a mess (messiness doesn't equal flavor to me). Again, it is not bad, and they seem to be nice people trying to create a great sandwich shop, but it just isn't close enough to its' competition at this point.

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I haven't been here yet, and I don't think I'll be able to afford it after I pay the $35,000 to keep my membership on this site, but I grew up in southeastern PA....there should be four absolutely perfect sandwiches in a place that represents itself as delivering Philly's best sandwiches.

Italian Hoagie - fellow Lancastrian Mark Ibold describes these well in the current issue of Lucky Peach. Check http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://i418.photobucket.com/albums/pp269/chrisoc_2008/n42294432998_1132166_23571.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.roadfood.com/Forums/What-Makes-the-Philadelphia-Italian-Hoagie-Different-m634807.aspx&h=453&w=604&sz=46&tbnid=oOCzjcP6EQzAmM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=120&zoom=1&usg=__uL2TftHRQ2BBZWukmSWMRCF6IfI=&docid=RTUYZxLB2qCUMM&sa=X&ei=Uby5Ud3wHILF0QG464CADQ&ved=0CEIQ9QEwAw&dur=751

Italian Pork - as mentioned above with the broccoli rabe mixed in, and with the juices flowing down your arms and dripping off your elbows. http://www.johnsroastpork.com/

The Schmitter - http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2011/06/16/cbps-most-popular-sandwich-the-schmitter/

Cheesesteak - the best version I have had to date was in Delaware. In Philly, it's Chubby's, Tony Luke's, Chink's or John's Roast Pork (where the cheesesteak is number two to the roast pork).

I cannot tell from the effusive posts in this thread if these four delights are well represented in Bub and Pop's -- bread is often the crucial differentiator -- but if they are, then I'm going there immediately after I buy a gift certificate for my cardiologist's services....

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Kibbee Nayee, they are not. This place does not resemble the sandwich joints I grew up enjoying in Delaware/PA. Very nice people and the sandwiches aren't bad, but temper your expectations.

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Had the Pops Beef Brisket sandwich (small size) today in the first of what will hopefully be many trips to this literally hidden gem (I almost walked right by it - signage could be much better). It was hands down a great sandwich - good bread that mostly held together, very juicy brisket, with a nice touch of horseradish cream sauce that was elevated by the small cubes of apple added. It reminded me of a really good french dip sandwich which is one of my favorites (pre-dipped without the side of jus though). I had 2 of the homemade chips by the register and they were good - even better with the onion dip. I thought the small sandwich was perfectly sized. It was better than stuffing myself on the whole Sundevich sandwich earlier this week (smaller amount helps with my lack of will power). I almost lost the willpower battle though and went back for another small after my meetings downtown. I kept thinking how this meeting is interesting, but that sandwich was great. The place seemed to be doing pretty good business around noon with a mix of eat in and carry out. I sat near the line and listened how people were bringing friends and telling them this place has the best [insert a different menu item] sandwich - so I guess I'll have to try to branch out, but it'll be tough that brisket was good.

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After eating here 3 Tuesdays in a row, I would proclaim the Pork, Provolone and Broccoli Rabe with Hazelnut Gremolata the best sandwich in DC (for me).

I'm sure there are reasons to nitpick. Some might want the ingredients mixed (not me); some might care that they charge for rabe (not me). For my money, they are friendly people and the food is delicious and thoughtful with lots of smart touches without being "cheffy" (like I would say G and SundeVich are).

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The gremolata is throwing me off just a little, but I'd give it a try, for sure.

Aged provolone?

 

yes in regards to aged.

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