I was driving down South Shepherd last week when a poster in the window of Arby's caught my eye, one advertising a French Dip n' Swiss sandwich. Though I rarely eat at Arby's these days (just a quick stop in Wasilla for a Beef n' Cheddar when I'm traveling in the AK) my interest was immediately piqued. I love, love, love French Dip! My favorite version is probably the super-salty beef on weck (or kummelweck), which are ubiquitous in my stomping grounds in Upstate New York; in this version, the bun is often pre-dipped in jus, rather than served on the side.
I'll settle for a roast beef sandwich au jus any old way, so I returned the next week with crossed fingers and a hopeful heart, ready for a delicious French Dip n' Swiss experience.
Was it delicious? Yes. Was it French dip? Yes. (In that it was roast beef on bread with beef broth for dipping.) Was it Swiss? Um, obviously not -- you can see that yourself in the photo. The cheese was decidedly American in origin. The yellow cheese was a disappointment, I'll admit it. I really wanted Swiss on my French Dip n' Swiss, you know?
That said, the sandwich was really good -- I ate the whole thing, and that's not always the case when I review food for Fast Times. (I rely on my husband to split the caloric damage with me.)
The sandwich would be mediocre on its own, as the bread was slightly dry, but I found the jus to be quite flavorful. Rather than relying on a hit of saltiness, there was a very good beef flavor present that enhanced the flavor of the meat and gave the dry bread a boost of needed moisture. And even though the French Dip is quite large and filling, I wasn't stuffed silly. I also consider 430 calories to be an extremely reasonable number for a fast-food sandwich.
All things considered, I loved this sandwich and would definitely order it again but man, am I hoping for Swiss next time.
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