bfd. I remember saying this a lot back in the day. But it sure meant something different than the place I’m writing about here.
bfd is also the acronym for big front door. Owner, Steve “Sheep” Riley is a native of Detroit, spent time on the culinary scene in Prescott, AZ and moved here in 2000, with a full service, upscale restaurant background, but always wanted to open a sandwich shop so he could, “Feed the people everyday.”
In 2001, he and his current kitchen manager helped open the popular Little Italy based, San Diego restaurant, Indigo Grill which he said was a great experience.
But he and his wife, Laura, turned their attention to starting bfd about 3 and a half years ago and they haven’t looked back. And we’re certainly glad they did.
I first heard about bfd from one of my new foodie friends. We’re on a couple of the same food groups online and we gather to go eat out usually once a week somewhere new. One of those friends, Jack Monaco (legendary chef in SD and now a consultant and private chef) had been raving about this sandwich place for many months. We finally got a nice group together and hit the place up. I’ve since been a couple more times and I can see that will continue.
Let me just state that I’m not the biggest sandwich lover. I guess I always feel that bread takes up too much room in my stomach when I want to try so many different things and that most just don’t do anything for me that would knock my socks off. See those socks lying on the floor across the room? ‘Nuff said.
bfd had me at baby back rib sandwich. This was something I had never even thought of before. I also had no idea that they had a sandwich like this when I walked in the door, so a review wasn’t even something that was on my radar since at this point, I’m trying to keep the site BBQ centric. But anyone that smokes their meats gets my full attention.
Of course he removes the bones and it looked like maybe there were two ribs on the sammie. The ribs were so tender and had a house made BBQ sauce on them. Some cabbage for crunch, oven roasted onions and some oil and vinegar for some more flavor and it was delectable. Served on a torpedo roll that almost held up until the last bite. I couldn’t argue with the $11.75 price tag either for the quality and quantity of what I got.
Sheep smokes most of his meats there. Meatloaf, turkey, ribs, house cured and smoked pork loin and pulled pork. Totally legit. On this tiny smoker in the back, all the magic happens. And it all has just the right hint of smoke, nothing overloaded. He brought some samples out for me to try and the meatloaf was really delicious and fell apart in my mouth. I got to try the turkey on this first visit because I belong to a generous food group. We ordered different sandos and shared bites all around. The smoked turkey with smoked cheddar mousse made my taste buds dance and I couldn’t wait to come back to try that one.
A couple of weeks later I went back and ordered that turkey and cheddar mousse sando for dinner. I was a bit disappointed only because they were out of the whole grain bread I had originally tried it on, which in my opinion, is just made for this kind of a turkey sandwich. I agreed to the sourdough, which I normally love and it was ok, but not quite the same as the whole grain. With the addition of arugula, tomato, red onion, aioli and a sun dried tomato vinaigrette, this sando was poppin’ in my mouth. $10.50 and huge. Order it.
My boyfriend ordered their Duck in a box which was a special, so it’s not there all the time. Ok. Why not in a box. As long as it tastes good, you can serve it on top of my head for all I care. The duck was shredded and it was tender, full of flavor and served with carrots, parsnip and in a rich brown sauce with a cheddar scallion biscuit on top. It was a gourmet meal and was only $12.
My friend Jack is a big fan of their Loins of Fire sammie with chili roast pork loin, roast poblano, pickled onion & jalapeno, cilantro, lettuce, fresno chili sauce, garlic aioli on a torpedo for $11. That and the meatloaf sandwiches are next on my hit list.
Taking a tour of their menu reveals so many unusual components on his sandwiches that I have to wonder why no one else has thought of these combos. Sheep, the sando genius!
I’ve tried a few of their house baked cookies and love that macaroon! Crunchy and chewy, it hits all the right textures and coconut flavors for me. Nice little sweet treat after all those savories really ends a meal here on a high note.
A variety of salads are also on the menu. A selection of sodas, wine and craft beers from local sources also served.
It’s no bfd to eat there, so get your mouth wrapped around one of these out-of-this-world sandwiches soon!
Counter service only. One big table inside and outdoor seating too. Does catering.
Open daily 11-8
4135 Park Blvd.
San Diego, CA92103
Next to Sprouts