A Distracted Foodie Finds the St. Martinville Subway

St. Martinville, Louisiana

By Patricia B. Mitchell, 2006.

St. Martin de Tours Church

From the front window of the St. Martinville Subway, one can see the historic St. Martin de Tours Church.

Early in July, part of my family and I traveled from Virginia to Louisiana (and the Mississippi Gulf Coast area) to look at real estate. We have lived in New Orleans and Biloxi and love the area. Our small town in Virginia is beset by a serious environmental problem, so we have been considering the possibility of a new location.

Since we have always been enchanted with St. Martinville, when my husband found on-line a pretty house for sale there, we journeyed south to see it. (Also, a friend and native of St. Martinville said it was worth a look.) That's why we were in St. Martinville at this particular time. Normally we would definitely not choose to eat at a restaurant chain facility in the heart of Cajun country, but on this 4th of July holiday week, the town was practically deserted and many businesses were closed. So we found ourselves at the Subway restaurant at 112 South Main Street.

An aside: As you know, submarine-type sandwiches are called po'boys in Louisiana. Nevertheless, one wouldn't expect an international chain like Subway to adopt that terminology in their Louisiana locations, and they don't. (Anyway the crusty French- or Italian-style bread used for a proper Louisiana po'boy is quite different from the softer Subway loaves.)

As a culinary writer/historian I am usually strict with myself about filling out one of our restaurant profile sheets and being very aware of food. At this meal, however, I admit that my mind was more on our meeting with the realtor and our tour of the property we came to see, than the sandwiches.

I do recall that they were out of a few things (I guess because food deliveries were off schedule due to the holiday). Our daughter Sarah Evangeline (a namesake of the town's heroine, Evangeline) got a meatball sandwich because they were out of tuna. Son Jonathan was feeling a little under the weather so neither he nor we can remember what he nibbled at. Henry and I split a 12-inch turkey or ham.

Oh, one thing we always request at Subways: we like the bread cut apart between the top and bottom halves, and the meat, veggies, etc., stacked on the bottom half. Subways nowadays leave a “hinge” in the middle. They used to do a V-shape (sort of a boat), taking off the top and putting the meats, cheese, veggies, etc. in the depression. Then they switched to the not-separated halves, which I think do not hold as many ingredients. — Just a quirk of this foodie….

Back to the topic (sort of): The St. Martinville eatery is diagonally across from the historic St. Martin de Tours Church. The architecture (see photos) and culture of the town and area make it well worth a visit, and if you do end up eating at Subway, you can get a decent meal.