The sometimes valid, sometimes tedious debate about the validity of San Francisco bagels threatens to erupt anew now that Adam Mesnick’s Deli Board spinoff The Board is up and running at 1077 Mission St. Open weekdays from 9:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m., The Board has a frequently changing menu of breakfast sandwiches, cheesesteaks, and more.
Early morning means bacon-egg-and-cheese breakwiches with the option of one of Mesnick’s three proprietary hot sauces — the Haba Reaper is hotter than the Haba Impaler, FYI — along with avocado and Board sauce. You can get it all on a good old English muffin, and Mesnick expects muffin business to be brisk, but the bagels themselves have been sourced from a wholesaler in New York whose exact identity Mesnick won’t reveal.
Lunch means a Board cheesesteak ($12) consisting of “a little onion,” white American cheese, cherry peppers, Board sauce, and an Amoroso roll, Philadelphia’s bready pride and joy. If you have a hunger for nitrates, consider the #1 (Genoa salami, capicola, mortadella, provolone, cherry peppers, “shredduce,” salt-and-pepper onion, and an Italian dressing, $12). But if you want something marginally more nutritious, there’s a falafel full of pico and hot peppers mixed into the hummus plus muenster cheese melted all over it and pillowy slices of pita from the nearby kosher Israeli Frena (132 Sixth St.). A native of Cleveland, Mesnick’s heart is with the delis of his Ohio youth, and nobody in San Francisco makes pita like Frena.
There’s also a grilled hot dog with “habakraut,” onion, and brown mustard ($7), as well as waffle fries with a rotating sauce, and there are both veggie and meaty salads — the latter being similar to the #1 sandwich but in a bowl full of lettuce, tomato, and cucumber. But this is something of an experimental offshoot of Mesnick’s nine-year-old Deli Board, so he’s open to playing and tinkering.
Lots of items and their components might jostle the memories of fans of his former spots 1058 Hoagie and Rye Project. The notably lower price point indicates a slightly different approach than Deli Board’s more labor-intensive, artisanal sandwiches, although the former Fénix space is looking pretty spiffy and inviting with its, um, cheeky signs.
The Board, 1077 Mission St., 415-678-7151 or theboardsf.com