Atlantic Meat Market, located at 110 Wall Street in Norwalk, has been in business for more than 60 years. All of that will change on Saturday, August 27, 2011. Bob Prastine, the owner for more than 20 of those years will close the door once and for all to enjoy his retirement from making delicious sandwiches and selling quality meats.
The historic business is home to what many claim to be the best Italian combo in town, known in Atlantic’s inner circle as the “Italian Stallion.” I had a chance to try this fresh sliced sandwich, and it lives up to all of the hype. It made me wonder why it took me so long to pay this place a visit. Now I can understand how Atlantic Meat Market developed such a following within the community. Bob’s regulars fill the line for lunch orders on any given day until it reaches the door and beyond.
Great care goes into all of Bob’s sandwiches, and he takes the time to talk to his customers, knowing most of them by name. He even throws in a joke or two while he prepares his masterpieces. Patience is a virtue here, you know what you’re about to experience when you walk in.
The sandwiches are easily addictive, which is how I wound up there twice within a three day period. The first visit did not disappoint either, as I ordered a Buffalo Chicken sandwich and woofed it down within minutes.
Even while I may have been a ‘newbie’ at Atlantic Meat Market, I felt like I belonged there. I hope you get a chance to experience that feeling too. Pay them a visit before they close shop, and get two Italian Stallions. You’re going to want another one for later.
Where I differ from Rob is that I was somewhat of a regular at Atlantic Meat Market. I never knew Bob personally but I knew about his sandwiches, even when I was a kid.
My grandfather was a loyal customer, always bringing Bob’s sandwiches for lunch at the Eagles Club, right up the street. Occasionally, a half roast beef wedge would make its way back home with him, only to be devoured by me.
When I was older, and able to drive, I made my way over to the Meat Market to square hamburger patties, natural casing hot dogs, and the occasional steak. I’m a man after all. Men grill.
I paid Atlantic one last visit this past Thursday to have one more sandwich. And Rob is right about the Italian Stallion. The fresh sliced ham, pepperoni, and salami mixed with the fresh lettuce, tomatoes, thinly sliced onion, and green pepper make a nice combination of soft, salty, and crunchy. The dressing had a nice vinegary pop to it. And a tip, albeit too late, a touch of mayo on there goes a long way. The bacon and cheddar potato salad is easily one of the better ones I’ve ever had. Bob’s prices were reasonable too.
It will be a sad day when a great local business like this closes up. Atlantic Meat Market will be missed. And as I stood in line and listened to Bob’s customers order “one last Italian Stallion,” it was evident that the food and most of all, the man will be missed as well.
Good luck Bob! –The Food Dudes