Review: Potbelly Sandwich Shop

I’ve got a confession to make. I’ve already El Paso-ized this place. I’ve been calling it Potbelly’s for the last week or so. Potbelly Sandwich Shop is a franchise from Chicago that opened a new location at 1373 George Dieter (in the Las Palmas Marketplace area, next to Chico’s Tacos).

Ordering at Potbelly is like ordering at Quiznos and Subway, except they only offer one size of sandwich. All sandwiches cost a little over $4 and do not include a side. You first choose your sandwich, then bread (they offer white and multigrain), the sandwich runs through the toaster, and then you choose your toppings.You can also ask for a sandwich to be “thin cut,” which is 1/3 less bread. Toppings can include mayo, mustard, hot peppers, lettuce, onion, tomato, pickle, and oil & Italian seasoning.  The peppers are actually hot and come with crisp carrots that are also pickled.

Sides include the soups of the day ($3 for a cup, $4 for a bowl), Zapp’s Potato Chips, coleslaw, macaroni salad, and potato salad. Soups include broccoli cheddar (not vegetarian), chicken noodle, garden vegetable (vegan), southwestern chicken, and spicy southwest veggie (vegetarian), and chili. They also have several vegetarian salads, including one that has chickpeas and blue cheese.  Potbelly also serves, shakes, malts, smoothies, and cookies.

I of course ordered the Vegetarian on multigrain bread (the regular bread is vegan), but was disappointed by the lack of veggies. It has mushrooms, Swiss, Provolone, and American cheese, and that’s it. At least at Subway I can get bell peppers, olives, cucumbers, spinach, and at some locations, a veggie patty. I thought that the sandwich was a little small, but liked the bread a lot. The Italian seasoning made it tasty and the hot peppers gave a good amount of heat. I also tried Zapp’s Voodoo flavored chips. I liked the Cajun flavor, but they were a little salty. They tasted like jalapeno flavored chips with paprika. Best of all, they sell Orangina! Orangina is a slightly sparking orange flavored beverage that is so addicting. They stopped selling it at Sun Harvest, and now I can’t find it anywhere in town!

Unfortunately, my partner found a long hair in her sandwich. A staff member passing by, noticed this and quickly took the sandwich away and brought a new one. No one apologized and we were not compensated for the incident. I couldn’t believe we received such poor customer service on opening day. The restaurant wasn’t busy at all and the owners were present.

I’m not sure if I’ll return, except to pick up a bottle of Orangina. The vegetarian sandwich is small and unremarkable. Meat eaters might enjoy the Pizza Sandwich (pepperoni, marinara, Provolone, & mushrooms), A Wreck (salami, roast beef, turkey, ham, & Swiss), or the Italian (Capicola, Mortadella, Pepperoni, Salami, & Provolone).

By the way, I had a hard time resisting the urge to type “Potbelly’s” into this post.

Vegetarian Sandwich w/Zapp's Voodoo Chips

Potbelly Sandwich Shop on Urbanspoon



  1. Hmmm, Arthur and I always pass by and wonder how it is in there. Maybe I can ask for a sandwich, hold the hair =)
    The picture of the sandwich looks tasty. So they don’t have a combo deal?

    • Lol. Yes, it’s worth a try, but maybe you’ll like it better since you have more options. No, they don’t have combo deals.

    • I haven’t tried it, but I really want to. I heard that they discontinued their meatless meatwich. What do you eat there?

  2. that looks small and not filling!!! where are the good sub shops in el paso. I grew up in Jeresy where they had great subs. I plan on opening a sub shop within 5 years in el paso. I am no vegetarian but I do on plan having atleast 2 different Vegetarian sandwhiches on my menu. I hate subways vegetarian sandwhich becuase to me its like a regular sandwhich without meat, how original. One of my veggie sandwhiches will be a grilled eggplant and the second will be a Portabella with tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil.

    • Have you been to Chubby’s Bronx Deli? I haven’t, but I’ve heard it’s very good and it’s owned by a New Yorker. The subs are pricey, but huge. That’s true about Subway, although some Subways offer a veggie patty. Let me know when you open your sub shop because that sounds delicious! Good luck!

  3. Hey there, great review! I’m originally from Chicago and I LOVE Potbelly’s (we call it that too lol). I was ecstatic when I came back to El Paso and saw it had opened in my abscence. I have to say I’m very surprised at your experience with the hair and lousy customer service. Maybe it was just opening hiccups? I once I bought a drink from their selection and I did not like it at all. I tried to purchase a different one and the girl just gave it to me for free. I even got to keep the original drink. There always friendly to me there and I’ve gotten good customer service. Maybe you just had bad luck but they still should’ve apologized and comped you.

  4. Yep same here I’m from Chicago and OH MY MONKEYS WE LOVE POTBELLY’S!!!! lol i am vegetarian (well pescaterian) and too i find the veggie sandwich extremely laughable. Mushrooms and cheese…really ppl? However since they hand prep your sandwich you just tell them put more on it. Add cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, peppers, and pickles. They’ve also now come out with the Mediterannean that has hummus, feta cheese, roasted red peppers, cucumbers and artichoke hearts. The toasty fresh n lovely bread with the chicago classic giardineria peppers n a great bag of zappos crunchy chips….oh my i think im in a little piece of midwestern happy place! lets not even start with the shakes….*drool*…..

  5. There are also a number of additions that can go into a grilled cheese sandwich, like ham, tomato, herbs and spices, or sauces like ketchup or mustard. Some of these will go between the slices of bread before the grilling takes place, and some are sprinkled on the top or used as a dip. Many Canadians enjoy dipping their sandwiches in ketchup or applesauce, while people in the United States tend to prefer their sandwiches with tomato soup or French fries on the side.*

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