When patronizing sandwich shops or other similar establishments, I almost never order wraps. I’ve never quite understood the appeal of a wrap. It always seemed to be the mutant offspring of the sandwich and burrito, yet never actually living up to either’s lofty expectations. Sure, wraps can be versatile, portable and convenient, but don’t they strike you as a little too dainty? How often do you see some bulky, grimy, sweaty construction worker digging into a wrap on his lunch break? Never. Nonetheless, I wanted to break out of my regular sandwich routine on a recent visit to Jimmy’s Serious Sandwiches, so I determined I would face my fear and sample a couple of their wraps (which, honestly, have been taunting me for months now).
First, I ventured into pseudo-Thai territory with Jimmy’s, “Thai One On!” wrap. Here a thin veggie tortilla gets a fairly healthy handful of spiced and diced chicken breast, along with Thai basil, bok choy, lettuce, julienned carrots, and a light lime vinaigrette. I find it incredibly difficult not to enjoy something with basil, even more so with Thai basil. The bright, aromatic and almost peppery flavor of this beautiful leaf is among the most precious of spices known to the culinary world. The basil, in combination with the crispy bok choy, zesty lime dressing, and thinly cut raw carrot, created a mélange of earthy, bright flavor. Ultimately however, the chicken breast left a little to be desired. Not as blaringly awful as the processed chicken chunks one might expect from the likes of Subway or the like, but still lacking flavor and spice nonetheless. There was room for improvement, but the wrap receives a passing grade on account of its honorable use of vegetables.
I moved on to my second wrap, a classic combination of turkey, Swiss, and guacamole. I opted to add bacon (a decision that took around 0.0001 seconds for my brain to process), and the wrap was finished off with shredded lettuce and tomato. Here, the wrap generally suffered from S.S.S., otherwise known as “stingy stuffing syndrome,” which may be apparent from my accompanying photograph. The tortilla, unfortunately, overwhelmed its innards, wrapping in on itself more than should be accepted in such a situation. The turkey was actually rather flavorful and I enjoyed the fact that they heated it a bit before including it in the wrap. The bacon, while scant, was crispy and salty and a welcome addition amongst the other ingredients. The guacamole is not the sort you might expect from an authentic or high-end Mexican establishment, freshly blended and rich with oily avocado. No, this is definitely more akin to fast food guacamole, bland and uneventful. In the end, this wrap definitely failed to woo me…and at over $8 for this little guy, my wallet was rather perturbed as well.
I think it’s safe to say I’m still playing for team sandwich or team burrito. The wrap, while novel, has yet to make an overwhelmingly positive impression on me, but I can appreciate some of its capabilities. Jimmy’s has the blueprints in place for an excellent experience, but the execution is still a little faulty. Perhaps, Jimmy needs to get as serious about his wraps as he is with his sandwiches.
Jimmy’s Serious Sandwiches
5116 W. Markham