Today we were supposed to have lunch to welcome a new member to our office team but since my boss is out sick we are postponing it until Friday. As such, I didn’t pack a lunch and I need to go out on my own to grab something to eat. Wanting to do something fast, I figured I’d try Au Bon Pain today.
As with many of the other skyways eateries, their US Bank building location was packed today and I had to wait a little bit to order my food. I looked over their menu ahead of time and narrowed my choices down to their salads as their sandwich offerings were averaging about 700 calories with the lowest at 490. After weighing all the options I was pretty certain I wanted to the Chickpea and Tomato Cucumber which was under 300 calories.
So I headed over to Au Bon Pain and found that it shared a large cafeteria style area with a closed cafeteria-style store front. I guess being that it’s a little out of the way of the skyways (it’s on street level which I didn’t expect) and it’s not directly near the escalators the traffic to this portion is limited to those that either work in the building or search it out like I did. While their counterpart wasn’t in business, they seemed fairly active today with a line forming behind me soon after I arrived.
Knowing what I wanted I looked over their posted menu to see what their soups of the day were, etc. While doing that I noticed that the salad I wanted (Chickpea and Tomato) wasn’t on the list so I had to make a quick decision and one that I didn’t really want to do. I didn’t want any of their other salads as they didn’t appeal to me today and they weren’t exactly cheap. So I quickly said, “The Montana” which I remembered as being one of their lighter sandwiches at a whopping 560 calories which is 50 calories more than a McDonalds Big Mac (PDF warning)! Ugh.
My sandwich was up quickly but the man working the counter didn’t announce what was what. I saw a sandwich sitting on top of the work area but being that he never said it was order #363 or a “Montana” or anything, I just stood there looking stupid and waiting for someone to help me. I blame it on work dementia I guess… Finally a managerish woman came out of the back and picked up the sandwich, looked at it, and said, “Montana?”
I grabbed my sandwich with the full intention of dragging it back up to my desk but thought I might need a little sunshine so I walked around the corner and towards the outside wall. The tables outside were under an overhang and were actually less sunny than the tables inside next to the glass. I took a seat and snapped a couple of food photos and bit in. My sandwich is described as including roast beef, herb cream cheese, caramelized onions, romaine, tomato and horseradish on cheddar bread. You can’t tell from the picture but the onions weren’t caramelized (they were raw), I couldn’t taste the cream cheese, and the bread was a bit overdone. The rest of the sandwich was fine and the horseradish was enough to give a taste but not burn the nostrils and while I assume that’s fine for the general public, I expect a harsh chemical burn when I eat horseradish anything. The sandwich came to $6.93 when I was all said and done and while it was more expensive than something you could get at Subway, it wasn’t any better and was quite a bit smaller. I should have taken Kim’s advice and eaten there instead; she’s always right, why don’t I listen?
If you’re looking for something to eat when you’re swinging by 225 S 6th St in Minneapolis, I don’t recommend that you stop in at Au Bon Pain. It’s out of the way, it’s overpriced, and it’s really no better than Subway.
Au Bon Pain
225 South 6th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55402
See all the pictures from Au Bon Pain on Flickr here (camera).