The newest addition to our NoHo culinary smorgasbord is Firehouse Subs on Lankershim, 5077 to be exact.
Firehouse Subs is nestled between Ostego and Hesby St in the uber gorgeous Studio 77 building. The owners Edward and Nerses are thrilled to be part of the NoHo community and feel right at home already. And after tasting the food, I’m very happy they chose us!
Now there’s something about subs and sandwiches that roots us all deep in our collective histories. Taking us back to our childhoods and weekend trips to the beach, adventures with our friends or packed school lunches made by loving parents. I think it’s the bread personally, that warm, earthy, primordial, yeasty smell. But it has to be good bread, and I mean really, really good. The bread at Firehouse Subs is outstanding!
Light and fluffy but not insubstantial with just enough body to hold the contents but not enough to get in the way of the flavors of the fillings…perfection.
From the moment you set foot in the colorful and welcoming restaurant, you’ll start smiling. Of course, the theme is a firehouse, which will always bring us happy thoughts and there’s plenty of fireman paraphernalia scattered around…the kids will love that! The subs are also firehouse themed - the Hook and Ladder, the Engineer and the New York Steamer, to name a few. The whole atmosphere is warm and friendly, the music playing not too loud, the TV on sports, but silent and not oversized so you don’t feel like you're in a sports bar, heaven forbid. It just feels like you wandered into an actual firehouse, and everyone was happy to see you…oh and there’s food.
The sandwiches are huge, thankfully! The ingredients incredibly fresh and the meats so moist and delicious you’ll think you were back in New York at some tremendous Italian deli.
There’s pastrami, roast beef and brisket smoked for 16 hours and smothered in just the right amount of Sweet Baby Rays BBQ sauce. There is salami and ham, turkey and tuna and momma’s homemade chicken salad. All scrumptious and all plentiful.
The sauces are spicy but subtle, full of flavor but never overpowering. They seem to put just the right amount on so it complements the already delicious fillings. There are plenty of veggies too and some delicious vegetarian subs already on the menu, although you can make your own sub and I can highly recommend the lightly melted cheese…on just about anything.
The presentation is impeccable, they take a lot of pride in the entire experience. The subs are handed reverently to you resting on crisp paper in colored baskets with a large sliced pickle on the side. The tables are roomy and the chairs are thankfully sturdy…built for a hungry fireman I think!
They also have some lovely chopped salads and a menu offering subs at under 500 calories, as well as a great kids combo selection. There are the prerequisite fountain drinks and fresh brewed iced tea to wash everything down with and even some deserts, cookies and brownies, both delicious.
Of course, I had to try several of their subs. It was not the hardest job I have ever had I must admit, and my waistline may never forgive me. They were all just fantastic, crispy veggies, warm fragrant bread, thinly sliced cold meats and lovely sauces. But my absolute favorite has to be the meatball sub. They actually hollow out the bread a little to accommodate these quite fantastic spheres of deliciousness. Then they pour on a perfect amount of freshly made marinara and top it all off with provolone cheese, all melted and ridiculously good. I’m sadly addicted.
I kept seeing on the menu the phrase “fully involved.” I assumed that the meat, cheese, sauce and veg must all be in a committed relationship, for which I felt eternally grateful as I tucked in. However, it was explained to me that it meant “everything on it.” Which is probably the same thing.
As I happily munched, David Bowie’s “Hero’s” began to play and the kismet of it all was sublime.
Firehouse Subs is a happy place. Full of unapologetically stuffed subs bursting with meat and humming with flavor. It’s the kind of place that remembers what you always order, and calls you by name when you walk in the door. The kind of place you become a regular at without even noticing, where you look forward to visiting and almost want to keep to yourself because it feels that good. Only don’t be selfish, tell all your friends, I certainly have. I now feel the sudden urge to jump in my car and park in the fantastic parking spaces the restaurant has in the Studio 77 parking off of Ostego and order my Meatball Sub, or maybe I’ll have the Italian or the Turkey Ranch - the pepper ranch dressing is so good. Or maybe the Steak and Cheese, or the Beef Cheddar Brisket…so many to choose from!
No matter what I decide I know it will be wonderful and I’ll sit with a smile on my face sipping my ice tea and feeling happy.
It's also rather important that I tell you about Firehouse Subs amazing contribution to charity.
A portion of everything you buy in 2017 at all US Firehouse Subs locations goes to the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation, to be used to provide lifesaving equipment to first responders.
Since the Foundation started, it has granted over $24 million to provide equipment, training and support to hometown heroes. Pretty amazing I think and well worth factoring in when you decide where you will eat when you are hungry.
Firehouse Subs doesn’t just believe in making good subs, they believe in making a better and safer world for us all…one sub at a time!