Mac & Min’s is a little New Orleans-style sandwich shop on Madison in the West Loop. I kinda like it there. It’s pretty near my pad so I’ve been able to hit it up a few times. I can’t say that this particular experience was the best one I’ve had there, but I can say that normally, I think it’s pretty good.
The menu consists for a ga-geeelion varieties of po’ boys, plus a couple muffalettas, some salads (which I’m pretty sure is just a po’ boy on lettuce instead of bread), and a gumbo du jour and maybe another soup (usually red beans and rice). The thing I like about it is that you can go totally classic with the sandwiches, like a fried oyster po’ boy, dressed, or choose from a selection of those more non-traditional and composed, or you can build your own. There are even options like blackened, grilled, fried or voodoo (which is apparently a buffalo wing-type sauce) for all the seafood which includes shrimp, oysters and trout, plus there’s chicken, turkey, roast beef, corned beef and even fried green tomatoes or portobellos. Lot’s of options. Lots.
This time I gambled on a chalkboard special: Peruvian chicken, swiss cheese, chipotle chutney and cilantro. I hate to say it, but I lost. Damn. It sounded good when I asked the gentleman behind the counter what ‘Peruvian chicken’ was and he described it as rotisserie style. Unfortunately, when the sandwich arrived, rotisserie style, it was not. This was an herb rubbed chicken breast, oven roasted until dry. Ugh. Plus, the chutney was syrupy sweet and minimally squirted on the bread, leaving nothing to moisten the bird. The cilantro was lost in the herbs and spices on the meat but worst of all was the waist of calories on cheese that I couldn’t even taste. Yeah, I don’t know what to say. I ordered a side of creole mustard to try to add a little sumptin’-sumptin’, but that didn’t do it either. Next time, no chicken.
What was delicious, however, was the red beans and rice. Is there always sausage in red beans and rice? I haven’t had it enough to know but that’s one thing that I always wish a restaurant would disclose. How can a restaurant just not tell people that they’ve added a major flavor and calorie altering ingredient? Why be sneaky? It makes me nuts when I order Brussels sprouts and they arrive at the table having been sauteed with bacon. Really? What if I was vegetarian? I mean, these are major components to a dish, and components that I would take into consideration when making a decision. Anyway, it was there and I ate it. And I liked it. But don’t try it again! (That was my threat to Mac & Min’s. How’d I do?)
Our second po’ boy was REALLY tasty. It was roast beef with grilled onions and a spicy horseradish sauce, dressed (which means, lettuce, tomato, pickle, mayo, hot sauce). Man, oh man. It was juicy, meaty, spicy, tangy, YUMMY. The bread they use for the sandwiches is really good. It’s a baguette with a crunchy but kinda soft crust and a nice crumb made for soaking up all the delicious juices. This sandwich had plenty of those juices so it was a big success.