Pepper Tree Sandwich Shop-Palm Bay-2.75-Stars
"Science is about knowing. Engineering is about doing."
As the old epigram goes when it comes to real estate it's about three things, 1. location, 2. location, and 3. location. Peppertree Sandwich Shoppe is conveniently located near the largest employer around (Harris), and next to a swill bucket of a place previously reviewed, Jim Jay's BBQ. In order to be better than their neighbor, all they really have to do is serve something edible. However, as this place has been here forever and a day, I assumed they must be doing something right, other than the prices. They are certainly low one assumes to incite the tight-fisted engineers from Harris to continue to frequent the joint.
Entering during the lunch rush, the place was packed with (based on the bumptious conversations I heard snippets of) Harris employees. I placed an order for one Tuna Club (toasted), one Roast Beef and Turkey sub with a side of stuffed grape leaves, along with a freshly brewed unsweetened tea to wash it all down. Watching the cook work his legerdemain magic on my order I noticed that the turkey was Boar's Head while the roast beef was not. But, I am getting ahead of myself.
The Tuna Club was made with obviously fresh tuna salad as it popped with complex flavors on the palate. The bread was toasted to perfection, the bacon grilled as adroitly in other words, it was quality on every level (rim-shot), the Roast Beef and Turkey sub was on some very fresh bread, but fell short of the gold standard found at Don's Hoagies. The roast beef, as previously mentioned was not deli quality but rather crappy, mealy, chopped, pressed, processed and sliced roast beef roll and it tasted about as good as it sounds. It would have been a bit better if the consistency was more meat-like than it was. All in all, it was average.
Originated in Aleppo, Syria hundreds of years ago, stuffed grape leaves are still best when done in that tradition (Syrian or Arabic). However, if done correctly Greek-style stuffed grape leaves, or Dolmades can be extremely flavorful. Sadly, this was not. This was a flavorless piece of cold yuck. The stuffing just lacked any and all flavoring, I can only assume they were not made fresh and maybe were of the canned variety? Regardless, they need to be replaced. I don't think the owner here inimically placed the tasteless grape leaves on the menu, I think it was an honest mistake. This place has been in business far too long for the owner to be trying any shenanigans on their customer base. They probably just figure, what do Electrical Engineers know from good grape leaves? The unsweetened tea was just as expected as it was freshly brewed and nothing beats freshly brewed tea (debate sweetened vs. unsweetened at your leisure).
Grabbing my sandwiches to go, I took one last look around the clientele and couldn't help but smile a little smile. They were lost in their conversations and didn't seem to be paying all that much attention to the food they were hurriedly scarfing down. As such, Peppertree Sandwich Shoppe can keep their prices low by serving average quality fare.
The Big Boy says, "For freshly brewed tea, average quality sandwiches and decent subs, this is the place for you. If you are an Electrical Engineer, all the better!" #bigboydiningout #iamthebigboy