The foundation of any delicatessen or sandwich shop is this month's Sandwich of the Month: The Italian. It has many names: grinder, spuckie, zep (zeppelin), Po' Boy or Poor Boy, hoagie, wedge. But around these parts, it's an Italian sub.
Typically, a 6- or 12-inch Italian or French roll split lengthwise, sometimes cut in half, sometimes opened into a V-shape; ingredients include a varying combination of salami, mortadella, ham, thin-sliced pepperoni, capicola, prosciutto and provolone cheese served with lettuce, tomato, onions and peppers with a mix of vinegar and pickled peppers. When Tom Blair decided to open a downtown deli with New York style, the first sandwich on the menu had to be the Italian. Blair and family opened 7 Deli, 711 N Hudson Ave., on Aug. 31, just west of the Oklahoma City Federal Building in the space long occupied by Allen's Cafe and owner Hayden Allen. This isn't the Blairs' first sandwich endeavor, having opened and sold a successful store in Enid and in Quail Springs Mall. But the downtown space needed a lot of work. "We spent a lot more money on the remodel than we intended," he said. But the result is a fresh-looking space with tributes to Bobby Murcer, Mickey Mantle, Babe Ruth, Roger Staubach and assorted Sooner sports legends on the brick walls.