If you were to ask me some things I would change about the food culture in Albany, one of the first thoughts that would come to mind is the lack of a good egg sandwich. Heck, even a mediocre to adequate egg sandwich. Something with real eggs and not some sliced egg loaf or frozen pre-formed patties. Definitely something that doesn’t come out of a microwave.
The egg sandwich was a key part of breakfast in my younger days, and I know there are quite a few transplants from other regions of the State that would agree. So I have long despaired over its absence in the Capital District. Other local foodies have suggested some diners that have a great version, but that’s not quite what I’m seeking. The thing I’m really longing for is a to-go sandwich, wrapped in foil with ingredients that are best right off the griddle. Ideally the egg is a little bit runny in the middle, although I know many people who like an over-hard egg with crispy edges (and I see some merits there). It should have American cheese. It should be buttered up and crispy and unhealthy.
Perhaps you feel the same way, but have been forced to resign yourself to extremely low quality imitators. If that’s the case, I’d like to offer two places that I have found that mostly fit the bill, based on some trusted recommendations:
McCarroll’s at the Delmar Marketplace
McCarroll’s is tucked into the side of a grocery store right in the heart of Delmar’s four corners. The market itself has a cute small-town vibe (as small town as you might consider Delmar), with lots of families and locals frequenting the deli counter. On a weekend morning they were absolutely packed with patrons, almost all ordering an egg sandwich. This was my first hint that the recommendations about this place were spot on.
I ordered a classic bacon, egg, and cheese on a hard roll without any other condiments to get a feel for the sandwich.
Freshly cooked egg? Check – actually two of them for a nice filling to bread ratio. Slightly runny center? Not really – this was more of the over-hard egg style, but still delicious. Very close to having some runny yolk but not quite there. American cheese? Check. And the roll was buttered and crispy, although it was a little on the flimsy side for such a heavy sandwich. This sandwich gets extra points for some truly crisp and lovely bacon.
Also worth noting – the deli salads (things like a tuna mac salad, beet salad, and broccoli salad) looked excellent. I have a feeling that this place also knocks lunch sandwiches and sides out of the park.
Eggy’s Place is a little food truck that you will find in a Warehouse District parking lot in Albany. Is this a place that you would think of to come get breakfast before work? Probably not, but you should. Only open on weekdays for breakfast and lunch, I had always heard that this little truck with a colorful owner churns out a lot of high quality breakfast sandwiches.
Served up in only a few minutes, this sandwich was hot and delicious and on the salty side (just up to the brink of being over seasoned). Perhaps even more bacon than the first sandwich, which is the key to my heart. It was also served with two eggs cooked over hard, and the roll was beautifully crisped. But again, a little flimsy and messy.
Were either of these egg sandwiches the image of perfection that I was looking for? Not really. But they were the closest that I’ve found yet in the Capital District. The things that would put these over the edge for me is a heftier and denser roll that holds up better to the heaviness of the sandwich, and a little bit of runny yolk.
Any good places that I’m missing? Let me know in the comments below.