Ann Clair’s Big Sandwich

Guest post written by Bronx Hipster’s Ruth Papazian

Family-owned Ann Clair’s Salumeria has been the home of “The Big Sandwich” in the East Bronx neighborhood of Morris Park for more than 40 years.

It takes roughly 15 minutes and seven pounds of meat to make a six-foot long hero sandwich. On any given day, Ann Clair’s makes five or 10 Big Sandwiches for family celebrations or corporate affairs, but will turn out 150 to 180 of them on Super Bowl Sunday—almost as many as on New Year’s Eve. To meet the demand, Ann Clair’s will hire an extra 14 sandwich-makers.

They’ve has earned local renown for their heroes, and is also on the radar screens of foodies far and wide—sandwich-lovers, in particular.

Henry King opened Ann Clair’s on April 1, 1972. The Italian deli is located on the corner of Morris Park and Williamsbridge Road, at the very heart of the East Bronx neighborhood Morris Park. Henry named the business after his sister, Ann, and his wife, Clair. His children, Jimmy and Sharon, now run it.

In this video Louis Reyes shows how the Italian Combo Big Sandwich is made. First he hollows out the top and bottom of the loaf of bread to make room for the shredded lettuce, tomato slices and roasted sweet peppers—and the seven pounds of meat and cheese that he layers on. Ham, Genoa salami, pepperoni, cappicola, prosciutto, mortadella and sliced provolone cheese. This party hero is $15.75 per foot, plus tax. For $3.00 a foot more you can get enough potato salad, cole slaw, macaroni salad, olive salad and pickles to feed a crowd.

Any of Ann Clair’s specialty sandwiches can be made into a Big Sandwich, including my favorite, “The Godmother”—ham, cappicola, sweet suppressata, provolone, fried eggplant and roasted sweet peppers. A super-sized version of these sandwiches will run you $17.50 a foot.

Ann Clair Photoset

Although the staff at Ann Clair’s makes sandwiches all day long—including a variety of breakfast sandwiches—the deli also sells tubs of vodka sauce and marinara sauce, as well as heat-and-eat meat balls, eggpant rollettini and chicken parmigianna to enjoy at home.

Photography/Video taken with Google Glass by Ruth Papazian © 2014