This year's Best Sandwich winners reflect broader consumer trends as chefs find a new twist on traditional menu favorites. See all the winners >>
Winner: Evergreen Club
Restaurant: Café Evergreen, Nokomis, Fla.
Food cost: $2.75
Ingredients: Wheatberry bread, grilled cheesy quinoa cakes, house-made pickled beets, two thick slices of tomato, shaved carrot and local organic microgreens topped with a healthy portion of house-made “creamy” (not cream) pesto ranch.
What makes it special: “It seemed like everyone had some kind of chicken or turkey club, but no one had a vegetarian club that tasted great,” chef Nate McCarron said, adding that this sandwich proves that it’s possible to eat happy and healthy any time. “One bite diminishes any suspicion that healthy food lacks desirability or taste.”
What others are saying: Called “a healthy surfer’s paradise of goodness” by vegan restaurant review site happycow.net user FlowerGoddess420, Café Evergreen has become a hub for local vegans thanks to its selection of plant-based menu items. As for those quinoa cakes, “the patties made of grilled quinoa and Manchego cheese are … more addictive than one might imagine, with the healthy grain as a base,” according to Sarasota Herald-Tribune entertainment reporter Jimmy Geurts.