The Foodie pulled her pink sparkled leotard from her closet and clasped her streamer-bedecked baton. She painted her lips frosted pink and her eyelids midnight blue. Tumbling mat folded into her backpack, the Foodie strolled out of Howard Dorm ready for her circus adventure at Big Top Delicatessen on Maine Street.
After cart wheeling into the café, she stood up, "styled" (circus lingo), cried "Aha!" and settled in front of the menu board to decide on her meal. So many choices! Big Top specializes in sandwiches; no salads or platters here, just bread, meat, veggies, and cheese to choose from. The combinations of fillings, however, are diverse, so patrons will most likely find a tasty choice.
"Get me the ringmaster!" the Foodie demanded, with a flourish of the baton. The young lady behind the counter kindly acknowledged his unexpected absence and offered to take the Foodie's order instead. The Foodie consented and proceeded to order a Cheddar Melt on wheat bread without the mayonnaise.
The Foodie melted in rapture at first bite. Toasted bread sandwiched a pile of thinly sliced ham, a delicate layer of cheddar, discs of tomato and red onion, and shredded lettuce. The bittersweet onion, spicy mustard, and tart cheddar complimented each other, as do peanuts, crackerjacks and elephants under a tent.
Just as Bohemian Coffeehouse overshadows Starbucks, so does Big Top topple Subway. Unlike employees of the pseudo-New York chain, these true sandwich artists construct tidy packages that don't overflow. The Foodie could not only taste but also see every distinct layer of her sandwich.
Breakfast is served all day at Big Top, so late risers can head over there if they've missed weekend brunch at Thorne. Various egg and bagel sandwiches comprise the breakfast offerings. Steak, ham, cheese and veggies fill out the egg sandwiches while bagels may be filled with plain or flavored cream cheese, vegetable slices or lox. The Foodie especially appreciated the freshness of the vegetables in her breakfast bagel sandwich.
Big Top also offers locally made desserts, such as fudge squares, cookies, and brownies. The Foodie swooned over a chubby chocolate peanut butter cup; she was stunned by its authenticity in comparison to the mass-market brand.
Big Top is a comfortable place: Phish songs jam from ceiling speakers while the folks behind the counter playfully joke with customers. Although the Foodie still has more to discover about the Deli, she has so enjoyed her meals there that she will most likely roll her tumbling mat through its door again soon.