DINING: Nothing alarming at sub shop

Firehouse Subs

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Dining - A&E

As much as I admire the work of firefighters, I’m not certain that rescue photos are the best choice for decoration in a dining establishment.

That is, however, one of few criticisms after my first visit to Firehouse Subs, a Jacksonville, Fla.-born national chain making a push into the Indy market. Founded by firefighting brothers with a family history in this dangerous service, Firehouse Subs mostly succeeds in its effort to introduce hook-and-ladder spirit and real-life-action-hero portions to a crowded sandwich market. I sampled the goods at the Pyramid Place location (3516 W. 86th St., 334-1471) but there’s another in Avon and, if management is to be believed, many more on the way.

Dining Meatballs are bathed in melted cheese on a signature sandwich at Firehouse Subs. (IBJ Photo/ Perry Reichanadter)

The emphasis here is on steamed sandwiches (without microwaving) and the highlight of my visit was the Firehouse Meatball (like all the hot specialty subs, $5.49 for an 8-inch medium, $7.89 for a 12-inch large). I don’t often order meatball sandwiches at fast-food eateries—even those I trust with hamburgers. But I may change that rule thanks to this combo of hearty, flavorful meat, sweet Marinara sauce, Italian seasoning, cheese that’s duly melted, and a sub role that’s up to the job. I sided it with a cup of Firehouse Chili ($3.49), which was miraculously still steaming even after I devoured half of my sandwich. One of the Firehouse gimmicks is a wide array of hot sauces available for supplementing (including its own, available for takeout in hydrant-shaped plastic, $5.99). This chili didn’t need the accenting.

You’d expect a place with a name like this to give some gimmicky monikers to its goods. The Engine Company stacked smoked turkey breast and roast beef under a blanket of melted Monterey jack cheese. The Engineer Sub replaces the roast beef and Jack with Swiss and sautéed mushrooms. And the Hook & Ladder Sub features turkey breast, honey ham and Monterey Jack. Getting a sandwich “Fully involved” means adding mayo, mustard, lettuce, tomato and onion and siding it with a dill pickle spear. Our order didn’t quite make it out to the table as initially ordered, but the friendly staff was quick to put together a redo.

Chain sandwich shops usually don’t show a lot of variety in the beverage department, but here there’s the non-carbonated choice of Firehouse’s original Cherry Lime-Aid. A little thing, perhaps, but one that helps Firehouse step out from the rest. And this is the only place where $2 buys you a five-gallon pickle bucket. Proceeds benefit the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation, which helps emergency services.•

–Lou Harry


Third in our month-long series of “elemental” restaurant reviews.


Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
thisissue1-092914.jpg 092914

Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Here are a few candidates for this new group, "ripped from the headlines." First up, that bizzaro State Senator Brent Waltz; secondly, the unethical Todd Huston, and his contractual arrangements scheme; Finally, but not least of all, the dishonorable Eric Turner. What sayeth you Greg Zoeller?

  2. Good day. I can't hide this great testimony that take place in my life I will love everyone to know it and be partaker that is why I always place it on answer, I am Mrs,Natalie Cuttaia by name, I live in Texas, United State Of America, I want to thank (Mr.Bruce Brandon) for his kindness upon my family life. I never knew that there is still nice lender like this on internet and earth here. Just some Months Back, I was in search for a loan of $100,000,00 as I was running out of money for feeding and rent. I was scammed $6,800 Dollars and I decided not to involve my self in such business again but a Friend of my introduced me to a loan firm due to my appearance and doings. And I told him that I am not interested of any loan deal anymore but he told me that there is still a nice lender who he will recommend me to, and I made a trial and I am most grateful lucky am I today, I was given a loan amount of $100,000.00usd, by this great Company (Bruce Brandon Loan Company) managed by (Mr.Bruce Brandon) If you are in need of a genuine or legit loan or financial assistance and you can be reliable and trusted of capable of paying back at the due time of the funds I will advice you to, contact him via: ( bruce.brandon071@gmail.com ) And you will be free from scams in the internet. All thanks to Mr.Bruce Brandon You are the one who remove me and my family out of poverty. The reason why i am doing this is that, i promise Mr.Bruce Brandon that if i truly got my loan, i will advertize his company and bring customers to his company. Contact him via ( bruce.brandon071@gmail.com )for the Loan you have been looking for..

  3. Hello, We are firm Organization formed to help people in needs of helps,such as financial help. So if you are going through financial difficulty or you are in any financial mess,and you need funds to start up your own business,or you need loan to settle your debt or pay off your bills,start a nice business, or you are finding it hard to obtain capital loan from local banks,contact us today via email mrsroseberrywilkinsfunds.usa@gmail.com So do not let these opportunity pass you by because Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever more. Please these is for serious minded and God fearing People. Your Name: Loan Amount: Loan Duration: Valid Cell Phone Number: Thanks for your understanding to your contact as we Await Regards Management Email:mrsroseberrywilkinsfunds.usa@gmail.com

  4. The question is, where could they build a new stadium? It seems in the past year, all the prime spots have been spoken for with potential projects. Maybe in the industrial wasteland area a block past Lucas Oil? I think it needs to be close to the core, if a new stadium is built.

  5. Aldi is generally a great shopping experience. Still, I'm sure YOU wouldn't want to shop there, which I consider a positive.