Lunch for One: Salumè

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[Photo: Kathy YL Chan]

It doesn't look like much, but this panino is absolutely delicious—and perhaps the best prosciutto-based sandwich I've had this year. Salumè opened in Soho just over a month ago and the reviews are fairly consistent: delicious, but pricey. And that is the truth. I stopped in earlier this week for the San Daniele. Unlike the typical panini we are accustomed to, in which meat and bread are pressed together, at Salumè the bread, a small Italian roll, is toasted and then filled with select ingredients.

Here my San Daniele was brushed with housemade mayonnaise, followed with Parmesan, thinly-sliced fennel, and then San Daniele prosciutto. See though-thin, and fragrant, and drool-inducing. Drizzles of truffle oil to finish. Such a simple sandwich relies on ingredient quality for success; and it delivered. The only hard part to stomach is the price. The sandwich alone, a small creation about 4 inches long, was $13.50. Most people do take-out, but if you eat in (and you should, the space is airy and light, a respite from the craziness of Soho ), add tax and tip and then lunch comes out to over $17 for the sandwich alone. Taste-wise you'll be utterly satisfied, but portion-wise is another matter.

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Understandable. If you can't settle with the notion of paying that much for panini, make sure to drop by for a late breakfast where the same quality meats are used in breakfast brioche sandwiches, a near-bargain at $3 for two mini-sandwiches. The little rounds of golden brioche, fluffy and rich, are split, generously buttered, and drizzled with olive oil. A crack of pepper and your choice of filling. Options include Mortadella, Salame di Felino, Emmenthal Cheese, Parma Prosciutto, or Cotto Prosciutto. Two sandwiches equal a light and savory morning meal—all for less than the cost of latte!

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On the sweeter end, Salumè offers wonderful house-baked Cornetti in the mornings, also $3 for two. The cornetti is a less buttery, more tender take on the croissant. Fewer folds, with a browned, crunchy exterior, sugar sprinkled.

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Can't decide between the brioche sandwiches or cornetti? Drop by on your way to work, get both, and they'll pack it up to-go in a lunchbox. Quite a deal for $6!


330 West Broadway, New York NY 10013 (map) 212-226-8111