We ordered a couple of "small plates" to start- all of which are more dinner-focused. A good brussels spouts dish ($6) rarely gets passed over- Ants Pants sautes their version, providing some nice crispy browned edges. The addition of shallots and a sprinkle of Pecorino rounds out a classic, ever-satisfying vegetable dish. Our waiter warned us the portion was small, but we were all still able to eat a few cheesy, steamy Brussels.
Mom, A and I all ordered different dishes which ended up being relatively similar. First up, the "maple bacon" ($11), a fancy bacon and egg sandwich served on a crusty baguette. Over-medium eggs ensured a decent yolky coating for the other components: arugula, avocado, and the special touch- some crunchy pickled red onion. A lightly dressed side salad of romaine and spinach, carrot shavings, and cherry tomatoes was an always-appreciated option (you can have fries instead) but a little boring- more acidity, please! Also.. I failed to get any of the "maple" in the "maple bacon."
I opted for the pancetta BLT, which carried over the arugula and avocado from the maple bacon. Numerous layers of salty, crispy pancetta are sandwiched between thick slices of a somewhat dry foccacia. Unfortunately, the pancetta completely overwhelmed the more subtle tomato and avocado, two things I really enjoy on a sandwich. Overall, not too enjoyable.
A chose a third rendition of the same sandwich- the "bacon stack" ($11), oddly listed on a different section of the menu under the appropriately vague heading "Other things...". The bacon stack is an open faced sourdough sandwich topped with bacon, arugula, tomato, a sprinkling of Pecorino Romano and more "sunny" eggs- more or less a combination of the previous two sandwiches? This might be nitpicking, but a single bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich would probably suffice.
My boyfriend won the battle with A's husband for dibs on the meatball sub ($12) (no overlapping orders when you dine with us!). Served on a long challah roll, the veal-pork-beef meatballs were lightly coated in sauce and finely shredded sharp Provolone. While the meatballs had an interesting, slightly sweet flavor, the sandwich as a whole was very dry- it definitely needed more sauce and perhaps a layer of sliced cheese beneath the meat instead of a dusting on top.
Our meal started out well, but I was pretty disappointed by most of the sandwiches. I know Ants Pants has a loyal brunch following, so we may have to return to see what the fuss is about- and have a chance to try any advertised special-of-the-day that piques our interest.
2212 South Street