Dear PhinneyWood readers, as 2019 winds down and turns to 2020, we are taking the time to highlight some of our incredible neighborhood businesses that make PhinneyWood what it is. We will return to regular news and events Monday, January 6.
Who better to make you a sandwich than someone who is a sandwich geek? Ryan O’Toole – whose original website was nowmakemeasandwich.com and goes out frequently to eat these bread innovations just because he “loves sandwiches” – has brought his passion to our neighborhood in the form of Valhalla Sandwiches.
Occupying a space that will soon be adjacent to the new Alice Ball Park, Valhalla started as a food truck in 2013 before transitioning to brick and mortar almost three years ago. Ryan has a long history in food service, and when conceptualizing his food truck didn’t want to make traditional sandwiches. He convened a group of “lifer” restaurant professionals and they “made whatever we thought might be cool.” That ethos led to such menu staples as the “Thanksgetting”, with sliced turkey, bacon, cranberry sauce, stuffing, gravy and rosemary aioli on telera flatbread.
Asked what sets Valhalla apart from other sandwich shops, Ryan was quick to answer with “customer service and ingredients.” I can corroborate the former, as every time I have been in the shop I am always greeted immediately, warmly, and intentionally. As for the latter, Ryan says that they put a lot of care into selecting their ingredients, and make as much as possible from scratch – including their chorizo and roasting some of their meats. Most importantly, they make and grill every sandwich to order, which is essential in creating a great product.
Ryan grew up in Michigan and now lives in the Phinney-Greenwood neighborhood. He loves living and working in the same community: “if there’s a new American Dream, this is it.”
8202 Greenwood Ave N