A Sandwich a Day: The Artisan Cellar's Artisan Cellar Sandwich

A Sandwich a Day

Reviews of Chicago sandwiches.


[Photograph: Roger Kamholz]

You can tell the folks at the Artisan Cellar are proud of this sandwich—they named it after their shop, for one thing. And rightly so, this hearty stack of imported Italian meats and tangy spreads, tucked between fresh and crispy pressed bread, should be a role model for lesser panini to look up to.

Let's dissect the Artisan Cellar ($7.50), shall we? The pair of meats—hot capicola and mortadella—are a direct riff on a classic Italian sub. Much like its thoughtful wine selection and Illy espresso, the cozy Merchandise Mart shop only sources choice ingredients for its deli case, and the duo of cured pork products in this panino are no exception: together they provide a solid backbone of heat and spice. Fresh herb fromage, Roma tomatoes, and garlic aioli complement the meats, lending brightness and creamy texture. Granted, it's hard to go wrong when selecting a sandwich at Artisan Cellar, but don't be surprised to hear "good choice" when ordering its eponymous panino.

Artisan Cellar

222 Merchandise Mart Plaza #116, Chicago, IL 60654 (map)