Bogie's Hoagies has been quietly sitting in a nondescript strip of stores on Lafayette Ave in Hawthorne for some years now. I've driven past the place countless times, never thinking the sub shop behind the door could be anything other than mediocre. I have recently come to learn that this couldn't be further from the reality. I sure do love being wrong.
Bogie's Hoagies, to break it down for you, is simply the best sub shop for miles, and certainly one of the best sub shops that I've ever visited. There's so much that they are doing right that it's a bit mind-boggling.
The place is essentially a sandwich shop, but it's run like a restaurant. The owner, who has owned and run full-service restaurants in the past, has been present every time I visit. He wears crisp, clean Chef's whites, and seems to be very much engaged in the operation.
What you won't have to ask for is extra lettuce. I'm constantly asking for extra lettuce at sandwich shops. Primarily because I like lettuce, but more because most places don't put enough on their sandwiches. A great Jersey shore-style sub needs a bunch of lettuce, thinly sliced onions, and a good dousing of oil and vinegar. Bogie's gets it right.
In addition to the correct and non-skimpy amount of lettuce, you'll also be seeing an appropriate amount of meat and cheese on your sandwich. The balance of these sandwiches is perfect (especially if you ask for gutted bread). You won't walk away hungry, or broke for that matter. The subs here are something like six bucks. Amazingly inexpensive for the quality you're receiving.
For that six bucks or so, you'll also get a respectable amount of chicken cutlet. Rather than treat chicken like it's white truffles, Bogie's loads your sandwich up with thick, tender pieces of panko-crusted chicken. Panko, at a sub shop. That's right.
The meatball parm hero on one visit was expertly crafted, with tender meatballs lined up down the length of the roll, and cheese neatly melted throughout.
If you're in the mood for a burger, they have a blend of short rib, brisket, and chuck. I haven't had it, but did see a juicy, m/r specimen while I was waiting for my sandwich. It looked pretty damned good. You want fries with that? I'm pretty sure they're fresh cut, not frozen.
I don't know who controls the music, but someone's iPod is always playing, and it's playing stuff that's right in my wheelhouse. I've been hearing stuff like XTC, old R.E.M., and Band of Horses during my visits.
I remain impressed with every aspect of this operation. Give it a shot and tell me I'm right.
Bogie's Hoagies : 421 Lafayette Ave : Hawthorne, NJ : 973.423.2221