Denver's five best spots for sandwiches

Categories: Best of Denver

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It's hard to really screw up a sandwich, since it requires just enough skill to slap a couple of slices of meat and maybe a little cheese between two pieces of bread.

But by the same token, it's also hard to elevate the sandwich into something truly extraordinary. There are a few spots in Denver that manage, though, turning out masterful creations that put those mediocre ham-and-cheese-on-white-bread creations to shame.

Here are the five best.

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5. Masterpiece Delicatessen
When Masterpiece sprouted on the edge of Highland under the command of Justin Brunson and Steve Allee -- who'd both cheffed elsewhere before turning their attention to bread and meat -- it immediately netted a loyal following that continues to pack the patio and handful of indoor tables three years later. And for good reason: each sandwich, from the Reuben to the roast beef, really is a masterpiece, executed with an exacting touch and served on a bagel or bread. We're especially in love with the Taylor Pork Roll breakfast sandwich, which pits a thick slice of spicy, finely ground sausage with a gelatinous egg and slab of melted cheddar on an onion bagel. That sammie helped land Masterpiece the Best Breakfast Sandwich award in the Best of Denver 2011.

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Photo: Stephen Cummings
The Jerry's Classic Italian sandwich named for the owner of Spinelli's Market, Jerry Spinelli comes with capicola, salami, smoked ham, roasted red peppers, marinated onions, lettuce, tomatoes and Italian dressing on an Italian roll, which sells for $7.
4. Spinelli's Market
During peak hours, the line at the deli case at Spinelli's is nearly as formidable as the long list of sandwiches, a board that covers everything from the classic Reuben to the classic Italian to the California Classic, which layers turkey, bacon, avocado and other accoutrements on a spongey onion roll. Know what you want when you reach the front, because you're expected to order quickly at this Park Hill institution. But no matter what you order, it's bound to be stellar -- which is why Spinelli's was named Best Sandwich Shop in this year's Best of Denver.

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Photo: Stephen Cummings
The House Roast Turkey from Vert Kitchen includes house roasted turkey with balsamic figs, goat cheese, mixed greens, tomatoes and pine nuts on French bread, this is Vert's most popular sandwich, selling for $10. Owner Noah Stephens says it's the most popular menu item but all of their sandwiches are "organic and hand made the French way."
3. Vert Kitchen
Noah Stephens went to culinary school in Paris, and he takes a chef-like approach to the sandwiches served in the tiny Wash Park operation. Stephens fancied up the BLT with thick bacon, Bibb lettuce and a little fresh mozzarella. He combines turkey, figs and chevre on a crusty baguette. And he's created an excellent pulled pork sandwich, sweet with paprika and textured with a cabbage topping. The board is limited -- and seasonal -- but each offering proves that even a sandwich can be haute cuisine.

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32 comments
Rome541
Rome541

I cant believe that nobody said SUB STOP over in Aurora at 6th and Sable they have a huge selection and great sandwhiches for the price.  Must try

SteveDenver
SteveDenver

I'm sad, but not surprised, that the Bliss Cafe in OldE TownE Arvada closed, but their Bacon, Brie sandwich with paper thin Granny Smith apple and Wasabi Mayo remains one of my favorites, and I can make it at home. (To get the apple paper-thin, use a vegetable peeler for slicing.)

That said, across the street from Spinelli's is Adagio bakery. Someone please tell them that a sandwich on Brioche, barely the size of a baseball, is surprisingly small for $7. First visit, last sandwich… back to Spinelli's.

Finally, visit Ba Le sandwiches at Missippi & Federal and get their Sardine sandwich. Absolutely fantastic!

Sandwich Lover
Sandwich Lover

All great sandwich shops but Backcountry Provisions in LoDo should definitely be on there!Sa

Best Poster Named Bob
Best Poster Named Bob

How can the best sandwich shop in Denver (Spinelli's according to Westword BoD) not have the best sandwiches in Denver (Carbones, according to W BoD)?? 

It's really hard to take Westword's BoD seriously when they create categories just so they can get more ad revenue.  Best Pete's restaurant?  Really?  Next year is it going to be "Best Hamburger From a Restaurant That Has 'Cherry' in the name"??

DTOWN
DTOWN

Hickory Baked Hams FTW!  I love Carbone's as much as the next guy so I was always able to look past the fact that they handle your money with the same gloves that they wear while making your sandwich.  Last time I was in there, they handled the raw sausage, kept the same gloves on and made my sandwich.  I ate it, of course.  It was a bit concerning nonetheless.

C. Montgomery Burns
C. Montgomery Burns

Has anyone been to that "McDonalds" restaurant?  Their hamburger sandwich is quite excellent.

Scott
Scott

Gotta give honorable mention to Old Fashioned Italian Deli in Littleton. 

Crucialbee
Crucialbee

Gotta give it up for Cafe Options

Defluo
Defluo

Snarf's anyone??

TheSpicyCheese
TheSpicyCheese

I would also add Cook's Fresh Market to this list on 16th.  They have some great sandwiches.!

Brad S.
Brad S.

Udi's Cafes for the French Dip (or chicken dip even). There's just something about the bread... mmm mmm

Jamey fader
Jamey fader

all great picks lady .... and i would add the parisian at marczyk's fine foods as a guaranteed good time as well.  simplicity meets perfection. 

Tom W
Tom W

There really are not a lot of good sandwich options in Denver. I think Lucky's on 6th makes a good sandwich, so does Famous Philly Cheese Steaks near Stapleton. What Denver needs is Wawa - nothing great, but always a good sandwich.

GFTW
GFTW

I tried MD and thought it was overrated. The bread was hard and the macaroni salad was bland.

Surprised Frasca isn't on the list!

Joey B
Joey B

Finally a top 5 I am on board with.

Mantonat
Mantonat

Parisi has always been one of my favorites.

SteveDenver
SteveDenver

Buy some ads, get a category… isn't that the way it works? Best ad buyers in Denver!

yikes
yikes

good to know.  Not as much a concern as a healthy adult, but a BIG concern for my small children.

SteveDenver
SteveDenver

Yeah, I tried one of those once. Slightly sweet, very salty, and redolent of barnyard fecal odor.

Joey B
Joey B

Yeah the pastrami is craaaaaaaaaaack

joey
joey

if only there was a wawa in denver....hoagiefest.

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