Tyler Kord is an accomplished chef who worked at Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Perry Street before opening Fort Greene, Brooklyn favorite No.7 and a trio of No. 7 Sub Shops in Greenpoint, The Ace Hotel and The Plaza Hotel. Apparently, sub sandwich fans come from all sorts of backgrounds. With the Super Bowl approaching this Sunday, we connected with Kord to talk about how the iconic submarine sandwich is quite simply the perfect foodstuff for the event.
Why are 6-foot party subs so connected with the Super Bowl?
They’re hand-held and are easy finger foods for watching the game. You don’t really want to sit at a football game with a knife and fork in your hand. That would be hard when you start screaming and pounding on things.
So why then are most subs so shitty at Super Bowl parties?
I don’t know. I don’t know that I have ever been to a Super Bowl party with a 6-foot sub, which is kind of ridiculous because I own a sandwich shop. I always end up working, though.
Well, you’re working because you’re making them for people who know how to order a Super Bowl sub.
Indeed, indeed. Why are they so shitty, though? People make shitty sandwiches in general — not everybody. A lot of great people make shitty sandwiches.
So let’s break down what makes a really good sub.
The important components of the sub are to have something as the focal point, be it roast beef or broccoli or meatballs. I always like to have a creamy component and something crunchy and something tart. I like to keep it balanced.
This part can be about why your subs are better than others…
I’m not saying that our subs are better than others.
I am saying this. Q from me, A from you. You’re too humble.
I’m just one dude who makes sandwiches.
Let’s talk about what’s on your menu for Super Bowl.
As always, we have the zucchini parm, which has always been my favorite. We have a roast beef sub that has pickled mushrooms, parsley and a weird kind of tomato mayonnaise. It’s weird but still something that most people can handle. On the more extreme end of the spectrum, we have The Godfather Part II. Some people think that The Godfather Part II movie is better than the original — not everybody — but it’s decidedly different and a little more disjointed, and I tried to represent that in sandwich form.
What about the Godfather Part I?
There was never a Godfather Part I here. I’m kind of basing it on the Godfather sandwich, which is a great sandwich. I just wanted to take it to the next level. It’s got salami, ham, Mexican chorizo, jalapeños and sweet potatoes to mellow it out. It also has Thai basil, to make it vaguely Italian.
What subs did you grow up eating?
I grew up in upstate New York, in Ithaca. We have a sandwich shop called Short Stop, which is a deli. It’s not famous, but it’s famous for Ithaca. I haven’t been back in a long time. I was such a picky eater when I was a kid that I would just get roast beef sandwiches with nothing on them.
Did you graduate to condiments by college?
Yeah, I would say in high school [laughs]. I dated a hippie and she got me into vegetables.
Who is going to win the game?
I think that football is going to win this game. It’s going to be a victory for football no matter who wins.
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