2299 Lee Rd
Cleveland, OH 44118
Bite: Not among the five best sandwiches in Cleveland.
by Beau Cadiyo
I’m reading The Game, by Neil Strauss. It’s about this normal – actually, fairly unattractive - guy who becomes a pick-up artist and sexes all sorts of different women. Frank Ramacciotti recommended it to me. I’m at the point now where he loves getting laid and pulling threesomes all the time but you can tell it’s starting to wear on him.
That’s the sort of mood I was in when we went to Brennan’s Colony: Ed and I even had an argument about who was going to review it. There comes a point in every professional sandwich reviewer’s career where one wants to hang up one’s pen, or computer, and just not eat a sandwich and pick it apart, judging every layer of filling and bread. Brennan’s Colony did little to get me out of that funk.
The first and last time I’d been here was when Ed stood me up for a night of drinking last fall. I’d had a few scotches at the bar by myself and watched a football game while two men, in town for their 25th high school reunion, reminisced next to me at the bar. During the daytime it looks older, more shabby, but also much more like a real pub than any other bar I’ve been in on this side of the pond. The wood is worn, but well-cared for. There are the obligatory Irish alcohol advertisements on the walls. The people are friendly, and flat-screen televisions beam from every angle.
I got there first and settled in a booth, which I immediately realized was too small to be really comfortable for us – it was barely two people wide, and if any of us had been bigger we wouldn’t have fit. The Mozzarella Styx (spelled like the river) arrived; they were delicious, but I found that the sauce was extremely acidic, almost as if someone had poured vinegar in it. My Buffalo Chicken Sandwich was, at first bite, good, with a spicy sauce, fresh tomato slices and a good bun. However, by the third bite I realized that the chicken was dry and tough, almost as if it had been cooked as another meal and then reheated with Buffalo sauce. It had to be torn to be eaten, ripped, the fibers of chicken muscle holding together and shredding rather than being severed neatly. My fries were served in a large wicker basket lined with tin foil because they were overcooked and soggy. Like the chicken, they were mediocre bordering on disappointing.
We’ve been looking for the five best sandwiches in Cleveland, and from what D. told us before eating, Brennan’s Buffalo Chicken Sandwich may have been one of them. I’m sad to report that it is not. It has the appearance of being tasty but, in the end, is unfulfilling. We’ve eaten a number of sandwiches now – all we need is one more to recommend. If you want to set us up with one, email me.