West Village Sandwiches: Faicco’s Italian Hero & Crosby Connection’s Crosby Special

Date May 16, 2008

There are few things more satisfying than excellent sandwiches. On nearly opposite ends of the West Village you’ll find the model Italian hero ($10) at Faicco’s Pork Store and a suped up, nearly perfect meatball hero ($6) at Crosby Connection inside the Parisi Bakery.

Faicco’s Pork Store, on Bleecker between 6th & 7th Ave, is an Italian Specialties shop which really shines in the butcher department. They make awesome pork and chicken sausages that you’ll find in restaurants all over Manhattan.

I was here for a hero though and when the helpful counter man recommended the Italian Special, how could I turn him down?

The Italian Special is worth every bit of its $10 price tag, here’s what it contains:

  • Prosciutto
  • Ham Cappy
  • Choice of Hot or Sweet Soppresseta (I recommend the hot)
  • Fresh Mozzarella
  • Choice of Roasted Red Peppers or Sun Dried Tomato
  • Lettuce, Tomato, Oil and Vinegar, Salt and Pepper

This hero screams perfection. As my cousin Doug, who I embarked on this sandwich tour with remarked, “it was fucking unbelievable.” And it really was. It was a sandwich symphony, perfectly structured with total harmony among all ingredients, flavors and textures.

Some of Faicco’s other offerings were extremely tempting leaving me with a very tough decision when I return. Behold the house made roast beef ($11.99/lb) and roast pork ($9.99/lb).

Now set your eyes on these lovely chicken cutlets ($8.99/lb). …

… and trays of from far left to right fried ravioli, fresh mozzarella sitcks, prosciutto balls ($1), rice balls ($0.75), and potato croquettes ($0.75). Faicco’s is one of those great, authentic family establishments which every neighborhood should have.

The Crosby Connection is all about the sandwiches.

Formerly operating out of a closet-sized space on Bleecker and Crosby, they recently relocated to the present location further east down Bleecker Street, between Houston St. and Elizabeth St. inside the Parisi Bakery.

The sandwich of the day was the Crosby Special ($6):

  • Meatballs
  • Ricotta
  • Tomato/basil sauce
  • Fresh Mozzarella

While great in concept, this sandwich suffered in execution. All the ingredients were tasty and fresh, the meatballs were juicy and tender, the bread was crisp on the outside, fluffy on the inside and had a nice Italian flavor, and the sauce was sweet and delicious.

There were two main problems:

  1. Lack of heat. This sandwich is advertised as hot but the heat embodied in the warm meatballs and the slightly warm sauce is not nearly enough firepower to melt the strips of fresh mozz and the underlying bed of creamy ricotta.
  2. No textural harmony. This is a direct result of the lack of heat. What Crosby Connection needs is a broiler to pass this sandwich under. A microwave wouldn’t do any of the ingredients justice. Every ingredient was delicious on its own and they would all blend together to create a flavoral symphony like Faicco’s if they just had enough heat to become one cheesy, meaty mass of deliciousness.

The Crosby Connection offers many other sandwiches that wouldn’t suffer from lack of heat. Next time I think I’m going to have to try the Italian Stallion and see how it stacks up with Faicco’s.

Faicco’s Pork Store

260 Bleecker Street b/t 6th & 7th Ave. (at left)
New York, NY 10014

Crosby Connection

290 Elizabeth St. b/t Bleecker St. & Houston St.
New York, NY 10012

5 Responses to “West Village Sandwiches: Faicco’s Italian Hero & Crosby Connection’s Crosby Special”

  1. Lil NYC Food Guy said:

    Gotta toss that meatball parm in the oven or broiler when you get to work/home. If they don’t step up and do it gotta take it upon yourself. No one wants some unmelted fresh mozz on a hot sandwich. That looks awesome its unfortunate it wasn’t.

  2. The Dirty Nord said:

    Food Guy – You gotta check out Alidoro on Sullivan street. They have excellent sandwiches as well. Closed on Sundays though. Fiacco’s is the greatest deli in NYC.

  3. The NYC Food Guy said:

    Dirty Nord,

    I’ve heard a lot of good things about Alidoro but I’ve also heard that its jammed at lunch (lines out the door) and the sandwiches are a bit overpriced for their size. What do you think about those arguments?

    Faicco’s is insane. the best part is that it’s not even a deli, it’s a deli and a butcher shop. That makes me happy.

    Have you tried other sandwiches at Faicco’s?

  4. Take the Crosby Connection to 'Wichland | Simply Sandwiches said:

    […] sight, but totally unattainable. I’d read about how amazing it was on various sites (for example) and I kept trying to get one, but was stymied at every attempt. After a few moves, they settled […]

  5. princesslove said:

    theyre rice balls are amazing

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