Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Quizno's Lobster & Seafood Salad Sub [Review]

quiznos.com
Quiznos has seen better days.

The chain, born in the early 80s in Denver, CO, revolutionized the submarine sandwich sector of franchised fast food through the novel notion that sandwiches taste better when toasted in a pizza oven. Unfortunately, this idea is nothing new (as any Italian cook worth his salt could tell you), and is also easily replicated. Take, for instance, the compact ovens used by Subway ever since the Quizno's emerged as its rival. While nowhere near as impressive as the rolling, assembly-line esque contraption used by Quizno's, the microwave-esque device nonetheless delivers all the same benefits. And when said fancy toaster oven is your primary justification for selling your product at premium rates, you tend to run into problems.



The Quizno's Lobster & Seafood Salad Club sandwich is not a completely new menu item. It may, however, be a good thing that I was not yet a reviewer for this website when the sandwich first launched a year ago along with the website http://www.loneliestlobster.com/. Seemingly a failed attempt at viral marketing, this campaign attempts to humanize four lobsters being returned by Quizno's to Cape Cod by making them reality webcam stars, topped off with a five minute documentary that strives to be the Homeward Bound of marine crustaceans. Although I'm as guilty as the next person to being momentarily enthralled by the hostages in the aquarium every time I go to Red Lobster, I seriously can't picture myself growing attached to the lil' red guys enough to hold, say, a daily webcam vigil of their whereabouts. And if I did fall in love with them, I sure wouldn't want to be eating their kinsfolk. After all, lobsters are very sensitive creatures:


This year's Lent-coinciding ad campaign strives to keep it simple, with a pirate voice, treasure map, and swooping camera pans:


Unfortunately for Quizno's, the devil is once again in the details. Specifically, the fine print reading "51% Lobster."

To research for this article, I journeyed to one of the dwindling number of Quizno's left in the city of Pittsburgh. Located between two major universities, this restaurant was unoccipied by anyone when I arrived save for the employees. The resident sandwich artisans pounced upon newcomers in much the same way a starving lion flails for fresh prey. This, all while singing in beautiful harmony with the Top 40 radio station they were blasting inside!

                              

The sandwich was ordered, plain on artisan wheat bread, and I eagerly filled my cup with fresh-squeezed pink lemonade, a tart treat which is a very underrated aspect of the Quizno's experience. The sandwich came served on the restaurant's signature Q-shaped trays, and I got to work.

                   

The sandwich was served with three tiny wedges of lemon resting on top to add some zing. This was a welcome flavor, but I wondered if the garnishes would be as obvious when the sandwiches were wrapped and bagged for to-go customers. The thought of getting an unexpected mouthful of lemon rind in the middle of this sandwich seemed catastrophic.



The bread was a little burned, but I actually appreciated the warmth and texture of the crustier parts. Artisan bread indeed.



My companion picked up immediately on the fact that the lobster we had been served wasn't 100% genuine, a fact that I only found out a few days later. This isn't altogether that surprising, seeing as the sandwich would likely have been pushed up into the Red Lobster price range if it was. My confusion rested solely on the matter of WHAT exactly the remaining 49% was. An educated guess would say it was whitefish or something of the sort...but if that's the case, why make it so difficult for your customers to know?



My only additional comment would be that it was a tad dry, as the 51% lobster seafood salad wasn't quite wet enough to counterbalance the lettuce. Perhaps a salad dressing would benefit it? It's hard to tell.


A large-sized order was completely filling for both my companion and I.

In the end, I give the sandwich 2.5 stars. While I have my reservations, the sandwich did a good job of approximating one of the famed Maine lobster roll for the mass market. It cost around $10 along with a small drink (did I mention I love their pink lemonade?), a number which only pales when compared to the multitudes of fish fries being held in town around it and the deep-battered Lenten delicacy being sold there for considerably less.

                 

It could be worse, though. Much worse.

Quizno's Lobster & Seafood Sub: 2.5/5

~Dan

Quizno's Lobster & Seafood Sub (Small):

















*Information Not Provided

**At the time of publishing, we had not heard back from Quizno's regarding a full ingredient breakdown of the Lobster & Seafood Salad.  

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

It is called the Lobster and SEAFOOD sub for a reason. Quiznos never said anything about it being 100%. The lemons should go on the side. ;-) There is also real butter put on before the toast. I like adding some cucumbers, onion, and lite mayo to mine. Subways microwave oven also DOES NOT even come close to our toasted sandwiches, sorry. The specs for toasting are: black tips, browned corners.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but the filling on my sandwich only had half the amount shown in the picture by the reviewer. Further, I did not taste much lobster, if at all. It's a rip off. Here in Hawaii the sandwich looks like a tuna sandwich and looks nothing like the advertisement.

Anonymous said...

In ours, the lobster is in chunks the size of almost on inch. It is also the number one ingredient, along with white fish, shrimp, and crab.

Anonymous said...

The Lobster and Seafood Sandwich is a great seller. I run a Quiznos in South Carolina and we run out of the product every single week. The Lobster is mixed with mayo and should make the sandwich very moist. I get a ton of compliments on the sandwich. People love it! I even have customers that drive 45 minutes to my store, just for the lobster. I would also not recommend the lobster on anything but the artisan white bread. All the other breads do it no justice. Our sandwich looks exactly like the advertisement as well. Its all about what store you go to.

Anonymous said...

I think its silly that people would think that your paying extra to just get your sub toasted. Your paying extra for good quality meat with no hormones. Grade A+ products. You get what you pay for. I do not mind paying $8 for a good sub. Its better than paying $5 for a sorry sub at subway. And subway employees are always rude. Bad customer service.

The Truth said...

Does Quizno's dispatch a crowd of minions to go type comments defending its horrid sandwich? Not that I'm defending Subway's sandwiches but noticed that the review used Subway's oven as an example of how Quizno's would have a questionable time using that as a justification for the higher pricing (which still leaves justification for quality ingredients instead). So who ever is ripping on Subway to defend Quizno's, you're acting like the losing politician.

Fat Lady in a Thin World said...

I just want to know what the ingredients are...

ReVeLaTeD said...

FYI - to the poster that said "you're not paying extra for a toasted sandwich"...little known fact: California DOES charge extra for toasting whatever. Ask Subway or Quiznos about it - they call it a Toast Tax. SO if you toast your $5 Footlong, it'll end up going over $5.

Anonymous said...

13 Grams of Saturated Fat? They take a health food: fish and lobster, and ruin it with fat. Deal breaker and an artery clogger.

Anonymous said...

I would imagine the 13 grams of saturated fat are in the real butter and the bread. Looking at the nutrition facts at: http://www.quiznos.com/Libraries/PDFs/NutritionalInfo.sflb.ashx
The actual salad (not the sub), for a large size, has 0 saturated fat. The ranch dressing for the salad (which I do w/o) adds 8. It is only 130 calories for the large salad minus the ranch dressing, which tastes spectacular w/o it. I do not believe Quiznos has a Toast Tax, even in California. The quality ingredients at Quiznos is not comparable to Subway because Quiznos has real all-natural cheeses (No processed Americans), real all-natural all-white oven-roasted turkey breast, all-natural white meat chicken, Real prime rib, black angus steak. The quality of our ingredients completely surpasses theirs and THAT is why our prices may be higher. But, let me give you a challenge. Go buy a large steak sandwich from Subway and compare IT and the price to one of Quiznos' steak sandwiches. You will see that our price may be lower than Subways, and the taste and quality ingredients will surpass them also.

Anonymous said...

And just so you know, your nutritional information is wrong. You have the info listed mixed between the small salad (not sandwich) and the sub. http://www.quiznos.com/Libraries/PDFs/NutritionalInfo.sflb.ashx

(And like I said, if you leave off the butter or the ranch, it is very, very low. Look at the Base total.)

Anonymous said...

That sandwich looks like someone ate a a Filet o Fish from McDonalds, a lobster tail from Ruby Tuesday, and a flank steak from Ryans Steakhouse, got really drunk, and projectile vomited all over burned Quizno's bread. And then you found some lemon wedges in a homeless persons pants and finished off the sandwich.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this in depth analysis of the lobster sub. Add I didn't want to go to Quiznos, (ironically the same one you visited) and try it, and be disappointed.

Momto3 said...

And when said fancy toaster oven is your primary justification for selling your product at premium rates, you tend to run into problems.
I find this comment to be misleading, as you state said fancy toaster is your primary justification for selling your product at premium rates;
What is Subways justification for selling their product at the same price point.
Why is it that Quiznos is perceived to be more expensive?

Dianne dy said...

I’ve already heard of the news regarding the failed attempt at viral marketing. But the good news is there are some search engine optimization books that you can rely on to make your marketing successful!

Damian Bathory said...

Quiznos may have had better days, but it doesn't change the quality of their food. Those sandwiches are healthy enough to be considered one of the best workout supplements that don't come in pill form.

Edward Jonston said...

I wish I could indulge in seafood and some of their tasty fried meals but I am currently recovering from an swelling knee and my chiropractor perth told me to layoff the crab, lobster, shrimp and oily foods.

Xander Lawson said...

Just the fact that it has lobster is more than good enough for me. I haven't had a taste of it since our catering sydney event last Halloween.

Anonymous said...

I had the lobsta sub.

Demanda said...

I can't believe anyone would waste good money on pretty much any Quiznos sub. Sure they taste good but so does Mr Sub. It's cheaper and you get more options for toppings.

All the WAH WAH WAH going on about this review is pathetic. And a sad reflection on what matters to our society today.

Anonymous said...

I am the world's worst at drinking the kool-laid. I saw the quiznos commercial for the lobster sandwich and just had to try it! I sat here and read the reviews while my wife went to pick it up. Glad I tried It and glad I never have to eat it again. Absolutely awful!! I'm not quite sure what I was eating but it definitely was NOT lobster.it was pretty much a cold mess on burnt bread and my stomach is making noises I've never heard before! Looks like I'll be glued to the toilet for a while. Thanks alot Quizno's you suck!!!!!

Anonymous said...

What is in that other 49%, I have to know.

Anonymous said...

If you eat shit like that, you deserve anything that comes out your ass

Anonymous said...

What is the other 49%?

Anonymous said...

We just shared an 11" Lobster Salad sub on buttered/toasted Italian White! Delicious! Tasted like MORE!

Anonymous said...

The TV pic shows far more lobster salad than you actually get. It was not overflowing, bursting from the side! Two scoops on an 11" sub roll spreads out to be very sparse. Need 3 scoops for this amount of bread!

Anonymous said...

I just had a regular sized Lobster & Seafood sandwich on buttered/toasted wheat at the Quizno's across from Glendale Community College (Glendale, CA) and it was delicious. I have no complaints. Think how many people didn't even get to eat lunch today, worldwide (lots). Given the fat content, I would not make a steady diet of these sandwiches, but this is one guy who thinks they make an interesting and tasty lunch, now and then.

Lee said...

This was a memorable gastrointestinal experiment gone awry. I will never enter a QUIZNOS ever again. FALSE ADVERTISING, TERRIBLE TASTE! If there's a class-action lawsuit, I want IN! Saw the ad. Went to website to see menu. Coworker went to DULLES TOWNCENTER QUIZNOS (in Virginia) to order four Lobster Seafood Subs for me and my coworkers. They told him after the first two subs that they were out of lobster seafood....but then "found" some more. These posts lead me to believe: 1) perhaps different QUIZNOS are receiving different product from their suppliers, 2) every pro QUIZNOS post is coming from an employee or investor, 3) my tastebuds and my coworkers tastebuds all got together and somehow planned to start suffering their very own group-mid-life-crisis, or 4) QUIZNOS does not taste its own food. Item NEEDS TO BE REMOVED from the public marketplace. IMMEDIATELY!!

Dwayne Duncan said...

That 5% of sugar in the nutritional facts should have to be 5% of artificial sweetener. As far as I know, there are so many health benefits that you can have by using an artificial sweetener.

Anonymous said...

I had one of these sandwiches and I loved it! It was moist, tasty and had lots of huge chunks of lobster and of course other seafood.
In reviewing the Maclobster, of course from MacDonalds...all you can taste is the huge amount of iceberg lettuce. After I rummaged through it to take out the lettuce, what was left was not even half the bun of tiny bits of lobster.
So my experience with Quiznos was a pleasant one.
The best thing would be to buy your own lobster and make it yourself!

Zachary Alex Stern said...

"the sandwich did a good job of approximating one of the famed Maine lobster roll for the mass market."

Ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

I worked at quiznos for too long, and I hated it. Corporate is stupid and have no idea how to run a business. If it isn't changing the names of subs five times to confuse the customer, its overly focused on changing the procedure of dressing the sandwich. Then they focused on redesigning the menu instead of focusing on establishing a solid menu customers could consistently refer back to no matter how long it had been since their last visit. But hey that is how you keep everything fresh,a struggling company doesn't need strategic marketing or advertisement. And yeah, I can agree they have no taste buds when it comes to introducing "new" subs. And some "new" subs are actually old subs which were forgotten about but given new names, and maybe, just maybe one slight ingredient change which causes the sub to taste too bland or too spicy. Also when it comes to HR in a franchise, it pretty much doesn't exist. And overall for all the work the job entails it is not worth the pay. If I come off as a hater that is because I worked the job, witnessed it, and had horrible experiences with it. So yeah, I hate quiznos.