#24: Mama’s Special, Leo’s Latticini

49 down. 52 to go.

You know what’s awesome? Sandwiches. You know what sucks? The Mets. Yes, it’s true, but a great day can still be had combining the two.

It happened to be the most beautiful night of the year. The sun was shining bright, but the rain from the previous day wiped out all humidity so I could comfortably wear a t-shirt without sweating through it. It was the ideal night for a ball game.

What’s amazing is that on a perfect Friday night, Citifield is still less than 3/4 full…at most. Imagine what it’s like on a hot and humid weekday. Regardless, we used this to our advantage to buy cheap tickets, sit in better seats and wait in shorter beer lines.

Food was a nonissue. Before the game, we exited the 7 train two stops early to pick up sandwiches at Leo’s Latticini. They typically close at 5pm, but the extremely friendly woman on the phone, who I can only assume was “mama”, told me she’d leave the sandwiches at their bakery two doors down. We later found out that Leo’s has a stand at Citifield, but unless you’re short on time or extremely lazy, the adventure through scenic Queens to the actual third-generation store is totally worth the journey. Not only are the sandwiches $3 cheaper than at the game, but if you’re lucky, you’ll get to meet mama herself. Then you’ll be confident that the delicious sandwich you’re about to eat, “Mama’s Special”, was made with as much T.L.C. as a sandwich can get.

It was also made with peppery prosciuttini, delicate salami, a thick stack of the freshest mozzarella, olive oil soaked roasted peppers and mushrooms, a little salt, a little pepper, all on a fluffy hero. It was unbelievably good and easily one of the best Italian-combo’s I’ve ever had. If I were Mets manager Terry Collins, I would make all of my players eat one of these bad boys before each and every game. Hell, it certainly can’t hurt.

I was hoping to end this post on a positive note. I would love to say the Mets played a great game, crushing the Braves or even eking it out in the 9th. Alas, that was not the case. In typical Mets fashion, they blew a 3-1 lead in the 8th inning and lost 6-3.

Despite this loss, I can’t think of a better way to spend an evening than with a ball game, some great company, and of course an excellent sandwich.

Gary Carter, our thoughts are with you and your family.

Leo’s Latticini | 46-02 104th Street & 46th Avenue, Queens

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