Ofcourse the Foodie-Blogger blogs about it and let me tell you , it is not kind !
So lets rewind a little bit , it is autumn here in Canberra , some days are cold , others windy and yet others rainy and cold. Earlier this week ,on one such wet and cold autumn day , I had a craving for a hot bowl of soup and a toastie.Perfect comfort food on days like that.The only problem was I didn’t have bread at work …or tomatoes or cheese ….So off I go, to find myself a sandwich bar that would make me the humble Cheese and Tomato Toasted Sandwich.
I walk over to the nearest shopping centre food court and choose House Of Vitality. It is a salad , juice and sandwich bar , I have bought something here before but don’t quite recall what it was like. Oh well ! There really is no scope of going wrong with a Cheese and Tomato Toasted Sandwich . I mean all you have to do is butter some bread , throw on a slice of cheese, a few slices of tomatoes , crack in some pepper and chuck into the sandwich press or under a grill if you prefer.
So anyway , I ask the lady at the counter who by the way looks overeager to serve me , ” Could I please have a Cheese and Tomato Toasted Sandwich ”
She motions me over to the sandwich display shelf and looks at me expectantly , I figure she expects me to choose from the existing array of pre-prepared sandwiches which look extremely unappetizing.I say , in my nicest voice I might add , ” No , no , could you please make me a fresh sandwich ?” .
The enthusiasm from earlier on has been replaced with deep irritation as she exclaims , ” This is fresh , all fresh !!!”
Exasperated , she now pulls out a chunky bread roll from under the shelf to prepare my sandwich. Equally frustrated but trying to remain calm I blurt , ” No , no I meant Can I please have a toasted cheese and tomato sandwich on wholemeal bread ?”
“Oh, oh okay ! ” She seems to get it , I think ?
Sandwich bar lady is now clearly fuming though I still don’t understand her problem. She somehow manages to put together a sandwich for me and tells me I owe her $6. I am flabbergasted ! $6 for a Cheese and Tomato Toastie ? Was she serious ? Quickly realising given the lead up and the bar lady’s ” I will strangle you if you ask me another question ” demeanor , I should just hand over the $6 and bolt ! Sometimes walking away from a situation of potential conflict is a wise thing.After paying , I walk back to work to eat my $6 toastie ( yes I really must mention the $6 as often as possible , it seems to help take the edge off a bit , thankyou for understanding), half moping knowing full well I had been ripped off. Hey , I don’t have issues about spending money on food but when you spend $6 on a cheese and tomato toastie , it hurts.Believe me , it does – especially when you are a pretty fabulous cook yourself….. And humble too.
Anyway , back to my sandwich , I unwrap it at my desk, ready and ravenous …now before we go any further , this is typically what a toasted cheese and tomato sandwich SHOULD look like :
Cheese oozing out , tomatoes lightly softened , right ? everyone agree ? Good !
This is what my $6 sandwich DID look like , brace yourselves , it is not pleasant.
Are you feeling sorry for me yet ?
This is what I paid $6 for ? THIS ? This hastily put together , unappealing , UNTOASTED , toasted sandwich ! And if that wasn’t enough salt rubbed on my wounds, the lady had decided to throw in slices of chicken . When in heaven’s name in the entire painful ,5 minute exchange did I ever ask for chicken ? When ? I bet this is the Sandwich Bar lady’s revenge on me for asking so many questions.
Yes , ofcourse I know I can stop acting all precious,toast the sandwich myself and pull out the chicken but that is not the point . The point is that I paid $6 to someone to make me something an 8 year old can pull off .This is a full fledged business we are speaking of , not some new starter cafe which should be given a second chance.Surely , they can do better.
I shared the story with my friend and colleague , IY who said , ” Oh , that House of Vitality , I never buy from there anymore , its no good. It should be called The House of Mortality”
Ha ! IY is great value , what a laugh I had with that name , to some extent redeemed from my toasted sandwich debacle.
Will I be making my own Cheese and Tomato toasties from now on? Hell yes ! Will I ever go back to The House of Mortality ?
Never Again .
Have you ever paid more than $3 for a toasted cheese and tomato sandwich ? If so , I’d like to hear from you.