In addition to generously sauced, slightly greasy sandwiches, Davis Square sandwich joint Deli-icious doles out an ample supply of New England–themed warm fuzzies. They've lined the walls with hundreds of photographs and newspaper clippings of Boston sports triumphs, invoking — like so many mom-and-pop-style establishments — the feeling that, by eating here, you are doing more than just sating your hunger.
The menu is expansive and confusing, but the staff is quite friendly and willing to dish out advice on house favorites. Most popular is the Honeycomb Hideout melt ($6.69), a hedonistic concoction of honey-barbecue chicken strips, cheddar cheese, bacon, lettuce, and tomatoes, all smothered in ranch dressing and mashed between grilled white bread. For a slightly more, uh, upscale option, go for the Chicken Pesto panini ($6.95), which delivers fresh mozzarella, bacon, tomatoes, and perfectly grilled chicken breast between two pieces of pressed focaccia smeared with pesto mayo and balsamic vinaigrette. Turkey lovers should consider the Smoky Mountain High ($6.95), which slaps mesquite-smoked turkey, pepper-jack cheese, chipotle sauce, and — you guessed it — bacon on a well-toasted, sesame-seed-encrusted kaiser roll. The relatively cheap sandwich price also includes your pick of side orders, the best of which are crunchy sweet-potato fries and a house-made potato salad with fresh dill. The "loaded" waffle fries ($1.79 extra) come slathered in melted cheese, bacon, and scallions, and are not for folks with delicate arteries.
Some sandwiches here miss the mark. The Davis Square melt ($6.49) pays pretty lackluster tribute to its namesake with an unfortunate combination of slimy roast beef and tasteless pastrami. Cow stock continues to plummet with the Flame Thrower wrap ($6.69), a roast beef abomination that has no flames and way too much mayonnaise.
On Wednesdays, which is Wrap Day at Deli-icious, the Flame Thrower (and all wraps) will only set you back $5, but I'd suggest taking advantage of the much more promising Tuesday Panini or Thursday Melt specials.
By now, the recipe formula should be apparent: meat A, sauce B, cheese, bacon, grilled bread — the alchemists in the kitchen at Deli-icious are by no means reinventing, or even modifying, the wheel. What they have managed to do is put a fast-food spin on mom-made lunches, a culinary mash-up we've secretly craved since the fourth grade. Toward the back of the kitchen, which is visible from the dining area, two Elvis posters hang next to a small black sign that reads, "Takin' Care of Business." It's hard to imagine a better motto for this establishment, which provides simple satisfaction and gets you on your way.
Deli-icious, located at 20 College Avenue in Somerville, is open Monday–Friday, 11 am–10 pm, and Saturday–Sunday, 10 am–10 pm. Call 617.629.4444.