Saturday, January 7, 2017

The Whole Damn 2016 Year End List

Not surprisingly, I ate fewer breakfast sandwiches in 2016 than in 2015 (31 compared to 49). It's not easy keeping up that level of intake, especially when trying to get to new locations after having nearly exhausted those in my immediate vicinity. You think being a sandwich blogger is all glitz and glitter and beautiful people serving you bacon on a gilded cushion? It is not. To be fair it isn't very hard either. How do you rate the level of sacrifice involved with driving to Middleton on a Saturday morning? That's how hard this is. It isn't trench warfare.

The biggest news of 2016 was that breakfast sandwich perfection was found. A Chorizo-Egg Torta proved to me that a perfect rating could be had. I wasn't sure if it could happen or what it would look like, I only hoped that I would recognize it when it revealed itself. I did, and it was beautiful. I shed a single tear and the salinity of that sob droplet blended perfectly with the chorizo and egg and formed a rainbow in my mouth.

Several months later I had the opposite experience at Denny's. The Moons Over My Hammy sandwich tasted like it had enough salt to melt the polar ice cap and at $8.59 (including hash browns) is one of the biggest ripoffs in the sandwich-sphere. I still haven't completely given up on the idea of filing a class action lawsuit on behalf of those who have had to endure this abomination.

Looking at the numbers it would appear that 2016 was more about quality than quantity. The average rating for a sandwich was 4.02 compared to 3.59 in 2015. The average cost was a bit higher as well, $6.95 vs. $6.65 although the inclusion of sides throws that number off. I spent a total of $166.84 on sandwiches not including tax, coffee, etc. That's down $125.89 from 2015.

A couple of other trends jump off the page. Most of the fast food or chain restaurants are clumped together at the 3.5 rating, which seems high in retrospect, but that's where they rated. Also, what's with all the "Public Houses"? There are three of them here but not a single "Diner". Diners aren't really known for breakfast sandwiches although perhaps I need to explore that more.

In general I think my ratings were a bit more generous in 2016. I've touched on this subject before and it's not worth getting into again, but I think it's accurate.

So, here is the whole list of 2016, excluding homemade sandwiches which I no longer rate but still include in the total of sandwiches consumed. As always, the ratings are just a number. To get a better understanding of the sandwich you need to read the review but to get to the true heart and soul of the sandwich you need to eat it.

5.00 - Xoco
4.99 - Sardine
4.91 - Bloom Bake Shop
4.75 - Johnson Public House
4.70 - Kingston Cafe
4.69 - Off Broadway
4.40 - Players Sports Bar
4.35 - Ted's Market
4.29 - Crostini
4.19 - Holstein Kitchen
4.00 - Lazy Jane's
3.99 - Plaka
3.95 - Waypoint Public House
3.90 - Wilson's
3.89 - C's Restaurant
3.80 - Barriques (Atwood)
3.80 - Yola's
3.70 - Roast Public House
3.69 - Collectivo Coffee
3.50 - Chick-fil-A
3.50 - McDonald's
3.50 - Panera
3.40 - Taco Bell
2.99 - Hotel Continental Breakfast
1.56 - Denny's

What of 2017, then? I'm almost completely out of new places to visit in the Madison area. I'll still try to find those and will likely double back on a few that I have already been to. I'd like to have more guest reviewers. Maybe some chef can recreate and explain to me the perfect puffy egg cloud I had shortly before Christmas. Maybe I'll just go to Bradbury's every weekend interspersed with occasional trips to Sardine. Maybe some of you sandwich enthusiasts have fantastic ideas that I haven't considered and you'll pass them along.


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