Thursday, September 1, 2011

5 Questions With... Soda Pop's

Dave Puopolo of Soda Pop's just gets it. The New England expat sought the sandwiches he grew up with: big, hot, and fucking tasty. So after realizing LA possessed a major dearth in this department, he took it upon himself to change that by opening Soda Pop's. Pop's does everything right. The sandwiches are hefty and fresh. The potato chips are HOMEMADE. The sodas are funky-colored. And, above all, the Chicken Pesto sandwich is  so good I'd maybe name my first child after it. 

To find out more about Soda Pop's, I heaved 5 Questions at Dave...

1. How did Soda Pop's come about (both the concept and the name)?  
People always ask me this questions.  Its funny how things have a way of taking there own direction. I moved to California from Boston excited about the food scene in LA. It only took a week to realize that there was a serious lacking in good sandwich shops. The concept is simple. Each Sandwich represents some familiarity with a little Soda Pops twist.  We don't try to make something so gourmet that it gets lost in translation.  People can relate to my menu.  I've tried to offer enough items that everyone can find something they like. As far as the name, I wanted something fun, catchy, and franchise-able. Plus my nickname is Pops so it kinda fit.

2. U.E. considers your chicken Pesto Sandwich currently the best chicken sandwich in LA right now.  What do you think makes this sandwich so special?  
The Chicken Pesto is one of my best sellers. The reason behind that is the execution of the sandwich. We take extra steps that most people don't.  For example we get fresh chicken and marinate it over night, we melt the Danish havarti, we grill the bread with in house garlic oil and we also dress the greens for every sandwich. It's this attention to detail that gives you that final product.

3. You make all of your potato chips in house.  Take u.e. through the daily process...
All of our chips are made Daily. We offer 3 different flavors a day, and a bag is included with every sandwich ordered. It's funny when we first opened there were very few places doing this. Now I am seeing more establishments frying their own chips. The process is actually somewhat tricky to get them spot on right. It takes a certain type of potato, soaking at certain temperatures, and the right combination of oils.  We now have over 20 different flavors in our rotation. There are bacon cheddar to Korean BBQ. Most patrons now have their own personal favorite. I enjoy the red wine vinegar myself.

4. What other La Sandwiches do you like?  
You know there aren't too many places I go to eat a sandwich. That's kinda why I opened Soda Pops. It's also tough when you work most lunches. One craving I cant get around is the Banh Mi at Red Medicine. I know there are many versions of this sandwich in LA, but Red Medicine has got it dialed in. Their execution from bread to the house made sriracha is perfect.  It also helps that you can get one of these masterpieces till 2 on the weekends. One of those with a Kronenbourg and I am in heaven.

5. What would you say to someone who says "a sandwich is a sandwich" and fancy sodas are for "fancy people?"
If someone says something like that then they are just closed minded. Don't get me wrong, I love the simplicity in a salami and cheese sandwich. There is just so many different directions you can take a sandwich though.  Whether the type of meat(or no meat), the bread, veggies, or the spread, the  choices are infinite.  \"Fancy sodas are for fancy people", well, I guess fancy people just have good taste then. The sodas I get are fun.  Were not trying to be pretentious, were just giving fun options for people to try.

Soda Pop's
349 N. La Cienega Blvd; LA

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