I’ve blogged a few times in the past about how much I love grinder’s. I’ve also gone over the whole spiel about my Mancino’s memories. For those of you joining me at SWM-Dining, here’s the short story.
Growing up, a new pizza joint moved in to Bourbonnais, Illinois near where I grew up. My family, not being very adventurous, almost always ate at fast food and chains…actually, this is something they still do. Anyway, a shop called Mancino’s Pizza & Grinders opened up. We ate there often. All four of us were fans of these new toasted sandwiches. When I moved to Peoria, there was a store called Bellacino’s…..that served the same menu. Again, I ate there a few times and loved every minute of it. When we moved to Lansing, we found more stores with the Mancino’s name on them.
Now, I’m going to be honest. I’ve never been able to figure out if all them are connected or, if they are, how. They all have the same name, the same food, and the same menu, but I cannot find one stinking website that lists all three cities. Hell, all three stores have a different name.
Now, enter a fourth store under the Mancino’s name.
I was back in East Lansing for work again and I headed out for lunch. The students still aren’t back, so the place I’ve been trying to hit up for lunch still wasn’t open. I started driving down Grand River with no particular destination in mind. When I got near Frandor, I remembered there was a Samuel Mancino’s nearby.
Samuel Mancino’s Italian Eatery is on Clippert Street in a strip mall that faces Sellers Avenue. Now, again, I have no idea if this Mancino’s is related to the other two in town. Heck, the menus all just say “Mancino’s Pizza & Subs” while the sign out front is the Samuel Mancino’s that seems to be more of an organized franchise.
The shop is small with a few dine-in tables and an order counter. Since I was eating lunch at about 2:30, I was the only person in the store. I made my way to the counter to find the familiar menu with my favorite type of sandwich. I ordered the 8″ pizza grinder. I don’t know why, but this has always been my favorite Mancino’s sandwich.
The bread is really what makes the sandwich in my opinion. I’ve never really put much thought in to what kind of bread it actually is, but it’s yummy. The sandwich is filled with pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, and pepperoni then baked open face in a conveyor oven.
The woman working didn’t ask me if I wanted my sandwich to go or if I planned on dining in. I figured I’d just let her decide. If she brought it to me wrapped up, I would take it to go. If not, I would eat there. Simple plan, huh?
The sandwich was brought to me wrapped in foil and a paper bag, so I grabbed it to go. The cost was a little over five bucks and that included only the sandwich. No drinks. No chips or side. I’ve always thought the sandwiches were sort of expensive, but worth it in my opinion.
When I got back to the job site, I ripped open the paper and got to my sandwich. My first impression was that it was a little dark. That was confirmed when I bit into it. The edges were a little burnt. It wasn’t too bad and once I got into the sandwich, I stopped noticing it.
The sandwich was very substantial. It really seemed pretty flat. Still, it was really good and what I craved after I realized I was getting close to a Mancino’s