Our Weekly Bread: Dinner Roll at Smiling Moose
The Sandwich: Dinner Roll
What's on it: Turkey and roast beef, melted white American cheese, grilled onions and creamy horseradish on a giant Kaiser roll with a side of au jus for dipping.
Where to get it: The Smiling Moose Deli (727 Colorado Boulevard, 333-3354)
How much: $6.69
A smiling moose is a tricky animal. First of all, it's a moose, and animals, as far as I know, don't really have facial expressions. And then there's the fact that it's smiling, which makes me wonder what it is smiling about. Mooses are already funny-looking, anyway.
The Smiling Moose Deli is also a tricky animal. From the outside, this thirteen-store chain (founded in Vail in 2003) looks like the typical, boring sandwich place. But on the inside, it offers a happy staff and some interesting selections, like the Mighty Mo, a cross between a hoagie and a cheeseburger; and the Hippie Chick, with ground chickpeas, tahini, avocado, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions and cilantro.
But then things get tricky again. Because the sandwich I chose, which sounded like it would be a winner, lacked any real punch. The turkey and roast beef were good, but the slices were all crowded to one side of a massive, Atkins-killing roll. The onions and horseradish should have added a kick, but were bland. The same was true of the au jus, which came in a massive cup that could have served as a small canteen.
Add to that the fact that the deli just raised its prices - prompting one regular to stomp out - and the Smiling Moose seemed to be dishing out frowns.
For previous sandwiches, read the Our Weekly Bread archive.
Get the Dining Newsletter
The week's top local food news and events, plus interviews with chefs and restaurant owners, dining tips, and a peek at our print review.