Discussions of Philly sandwich shops generally begin and end with the usual suspects.
Kindly add two unsung, chef-owned shops to the chatter now.
At Woodrow's Sandwich Shop, which since early 2016 has shared a South Street block with Serpico, Kevin Kramer turns out a dozen or so excellent creations, including a grilled cheese sandwich ($8) of Taleggio and American cheeses with sliced pear on crunchy Parmesan herb-crusted bread; and the Not Just for Breakfast sandwich ($7.50), with mustard cream cheese, sour cream and chive egg, and a choice of bacon, house-made sausage, or prosciutto on a pretzel croissant. Probably because of South Street's tourist traffic, Kramer offers a cheesesteak (with shaved rib eye, truffle Whiz, and caramelized onion) and a roast pork sandwich.
You won't find a cheesesteak on the menu at the snug Stockyard Sandwich Co., which opened in late 2016 on Spring Garden Street near Community College of Philadelphia. Mike Metzger and William Lindsay, rocking the locally sourced philosophy, offer only six sandwiches. But each is a work of art.
My favorite: the braised beef ($11). With housemade Whiz, sauteed mushrooms, and onions overflowing a roll from Carangi Bakery, it's like a portable beef Bourguignon.
You can get pork banh mi, but Stockyard generously uses the whole pig, giving you a variety of textures. Also worth the trip are the burger (a steal at $8) and the salmon burger ($11).
There's also a full breakfast menu, as it opens at 8 a.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. weekends. — Michael Klein
Woodrow's Sandwich Shop, 630 South St., 215-470-3559
Stockyard Sandwich Co., 1541 Spring Garden St., 215-977-9273.