Dave Bagan's mom used to pack him two Italian hoagies and a pack of TastyKakes for lunch daily.
Now he is returning the favor for New Yorkers at Dave's Hoagies, which opened in the Financial District in late April.
Bagan's submarine-style sandwiches ally themselves with Philadelphia's proud tradition of strapping hoagies--with two exceptions.
The Italian ($11) laps sharp Provolone with a traditional trifecta of sopressata, coppa and Genoa salami. Romaine hearts, sliced tomatoes, shaved red onions, roasted red peppers, artichokes, hot cherry peppers and Parmesan all somehow squeeze their way on top.
For freshness, though, Bagan forsakes the City of Brotherly Love, instead using rolls from Nolita's Parisi Bakery.
The second shift: All the sandwiches at Dave's wear an emulsified "hoagie sauce" of olive oil, balsamic, mayonnaise and granulated garlic, in place of liquid oil and vinegar. The sauce is tasty, but doesn't boast the special soppiness of the original method. So ask for supplemental dressing if you're willing to brave your workaday wear.
One brawny half and a bag of Deep River Potato Chips ($1.50) is a light lunch, and two halves will see you to dinner.