Last week during a very busy day at work I went in and got the French dip from the deli in my office, King Deli and Espresso, and ate it at my desk. Going into this experience I had very low expectations; the deli is half-deli, half-convenience-store and serves pretty basic things but the people there all seem really nice and I enjoy watching the workers prepare food. It has a really nice, family-oriented vibe to it and just seems simple and unpretentious, even wholesome. I have a sense of "prepared with love" when I go to this place and that's a nice feeling.
I started working in this building about a month ago and since then, I've enjoyed their chicken teriyaki and spicy chicken teriyaki. I also had their "Pizzini" sandwich, a panini with pizza-like fillings, and that was pretty good as well. The portion sizes provided are all rather generous, too. I had assumed that the French dip would be bland and lackluster without any unique or distinguishing features but I was wrong.
After ordering and selecting a side salad as my accompaniment, I went back upstairs to my desk to eat. I unboxed the dip and it looked way better and fancier than I had anticipated. It had nice provalone on it, the size was good, and you could see a pretty heavy dousing of black pepper, which is not common and was indeed a nice feature to behold. The bread was of type classic French. There was not a ton of roast beef on it (it could have used more in fact) but overall I was pretty pleased with the presentation. The bread was toasted as well, probably by their panini machine but it was not flat. The bread wound up being quite absorbent and in the end, my last two bites were without jus. The jus came in a small styrofoam cup and was hot and good. There was a nice deli pickle spear that I immediately ate.
As I like to do for starters, I ate the sandwich alone without jus so I could know what that with which I was working. I was happy. Not overwhelmed but happy. The cheese and buttered bread made it a a good taste. I gave the sandwich a jus-plunge and took a bite: it was even better, so I was really happy with that which I would enjoy. I made my way through the dip and finished it all, pleased.
The provolone had its expected mild but good flavor and contributed a bit of depth to the sandwich, which I enjoyed. While ordering, I was given the option of a potato salad but opted for a side green salad. The salad was very simple (iceberg lettuce with ranch) yet overall was pretty good, cold and made a nice complement to the hot sandwich.
Overall, I rate this French dip sandwich and meal a 4 of 5. Yes, it's a pretty high score for a rather basic unit under $10 but the provalone and pepper made it stand out. To boot, this sandwich is in my building and easily acceptable so I get my dip-fix if necessary. I'm really happy that I bit the bullet, ordered, ate and reviewed this dip.
My apologies for not having any pictures here but you'll have to take my word that this is a good, solid, satisfying French dip that is enhanced by a nice, peppery taste with some nice cheese and portion size for under $10.