Despite being a Tremont mainstay for a decade, the small sandwich shop La Bodega (869 Jefferson Ave., 216-621-7075, labodega-tremont.com) is often overlooked. That's a shame, because while this snug storefront space only seats a handful of customers, the café is cozy and inviting, and the counter service is always prompt. If you do give it a try, don't expect to find a "bodega' in the true sense of the word — this one's all about the food.
Despite the café's petite size, the menu is surprisingly extensive — and I’ve yet to order something I didn't like. Still, I do find myself going back time and again to the Greek sub.
Most sandwich shops offer a turkey sub, but La Bodega’s Greek-style version ($9.75) is massive and delicious, starring shaved turkey, artichoke hearts, olives, feta, tomato and onion. It all gets loaded into a hearty Orlando bun, doused with savory Greek dressing and sprinkled with a fragrant Mediterranean herb blend. Cut in half, the sub easily can make two meals, but nobody will blame you if you plow through the whole thing in one ravenous fit of hunger.
La Bodega also offers a variety of vegetarian offerings, a fresh crop of crisp salads, and an extensive selection of sandwiches and wraps. Some worth noting are the curried chicken salad wrap; roast beef with havarti and horseradish mayo; ham with brie, pineapple and honey mustard; and a smoked salmon with bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion and mayo.
At La Bodega, diners can pair those salads and sandwiches with any number of homemade soups and side dishes, such as macaroni salad, coleslaw and potato salad. A well-stocked drink cooler is loaded with interesting beverages, including Boylan sodas, which use cane sugar in place of high fructose corn syrup. Desserts range from cookies to homemade Rice Krispy treats with peanut butter.