Potbelly’s Secret Underground Menu Available on 44th
Ever since Andrea posted about her unsuccessful attempt at ordering from Potbelly’s secret “underground” menu downtown, I’ve been on a mission to get my hands on these elusive little sandwiches. My only previous experience with Potbelly was years ago at the Chicago airport (I remember them being quite tasty) and I certainly wasn’t hip or in-the-know enough at that point to ask for one of their secret sandwiches. All the underground sandwiches use the same ingredients from one of their signature menu items, but in a different arrangement. So unfortunately, there’s no secret hidden ingredients involved. No foie gras or face bacon, I’m afraid.
After doing some research online, I learned the names of some of the creations, so I was prepared when I walked into the 44th Street Location (between Lex and 3rd). I ordered “the Wrecking Ball” without flinching and to my surprise, the employee seemed to know what I was talking about. He had to check with a manager to find out exactly what was in it, but he made the sandwich no problem. For those curious, the Wrecking Ball is a combination of their Meatball sandwich (minus the marinara sauce) and their Wreck sandwich. I could have also ordered the Fire Ball (meatball sandwich topped with chili) or the Cheeseburger (meatball sandwich with ketchup, mustard, cheese, and pickles).
As they made my sandwich I asked them more about the availability of these secret sandwiches. I told them I heard the downtown store wouldn’t make them and the employee here assured me that they would eventually. Since all the Potbellys are brand new to New York, they’re still getting on the same page. It just so happens one of the managers at this location was transferred from Chicago, so the underground menu is something these employees learned about quickly.
I can attest that the Wrecking Ball is a delicious sandwich. The smoky, spicy meatballs were awesome and gave an extra meaty flavor and texture to the already overloaded Wreck sandwich (it contains salami, turkey, ham, roast beef, and swiss cheese). With so many ingredients, I was amazed that none overpowered the other. There were a lot of strong flavors working together. And if you’ve never had a Potbelly sandwich before, the toasty bread makes all the difference.
Since the Wrecking Ball was basically two sandwiches combined into one, I was concerned that they were going to charge me double. Fortunately, it was still a very fair $6. That’s a small price to pay for such a delicious sandwich, not to mention all the cool points you’ll earn for ordering off the secret menu.
Potbelly, 150 E 44th St (646) 289-4202