Griff’s provides a reliable sandwich

A fajita potato layered with chicken, sautèed onions and green peppers, sliced jalapenos, diced tomatoes and smothered in melted cheddar cheese is paired with a wheat ranchero wrap at Griff s Deli. The restaurant is located at 1640 Scottsville Rd. Alyssa Pointer/HERALD

John Greer

Griffs Deli is a quintessential college sandwich joint offering up a flavorful array of sandwiches, wraps and spuds. It’s a popular student destination and a common choice for college organization fundraisers and it’s easy to see why. Griffs straddles the line between trendy and classic with reasonable success.

Those looking for a typical deli probably won’t find it here. It is not so much a delicatessen as a fast-casual cafe a la Panera Bread. The modern, open interior emphasizes this appearance. Less understandable is the restaurant’s unexplainable affinity for the aviation aesthetic. Giant pictures of airplanes and pilots dominate the available wall-space. This might be unexpected, but it does make for a more unique atmosphere.  

The panini press found a safe haven at Griffs. The sandwiches and wraps all bore its appealing signature grill marks.  The grilled ranchero wrap — stuffed with sliced chicken, bacon and avocado — was no exception. Biting into the wrap’s crisp exterior yielded a satisfying crackle. The wrap found a really satisfying balance in the smokiness of the bacon and the fattiness of the avocado, and the vinegary shot of salsa coupled with pepper jack cheese supplied a lively burst of spice. 

The fajita spud was smothered with steak, caramelized onion, sautéed peppers and melted cheese. The steak was clearly not the choicest cut of meat, but it was flavorful and plentiful enough to assert its presence. A side of salsa supplied a peppery sharpness to each bite. However, even with the generously portioned medley of ingredients the ratio of topping to potato felt a little inadequate. 

Griffs lack of creativity or technical flair probably bars it from the conversation of most-delicious sandwich shop in town, but its consistency makes it a dependable choice.