What’s Up with Subway’s Unnatural Disdain for Ketchup?

Written By Scott Joseph On January 18, 2013

heinzIs the Subway chain owned by an ex waiter from Paris? How else to explain why a sandwich maker would have such an unnatural disdain for a condiment as common and ketchup? No, even that wouldn’t explain it, because even at a cafe on Boulevard St. Germain on the City of Light’s Left Bank the waiter would still bring ketchup upon request. He would sneer, possibly sniff and mutter something about American culinary inferiority, but he would eventually present the offensive substance.

But not Subway. The sandwich maker doesn’t even keep any on the premises. That became painfully aware recently when a customer requested some for his Philly cheesesteak. As reported by our friends in this story at WFTV, the customer ordered the sandwich at a Subway inside a Walmart on South Semoran Boulevard on the first of the year. He asked for American cheese, onions and ketchup. When told that he could have only two out three of those items, the customer reportedly got upset. The situation escalated and became threatening, nearly turning into a fist fight. The police were called.

The incident reminded me of the last time I visited a Subway, at least one that doesn’t hurtle passengers through tunnels in New York. I was on jury duty back when the courthouse was still in the Angebilt Building (this was a very long time ago, and yes, I’m that old). I arrived prior to the appointed time for jurors to amass, so I thought I would pop in to the Subway on the first floor of the building for a quick egg sandwich.

I love egg sandwiches, usually with cheese, maybe ham or sausage or bacon. Sometimes on a kaiser roll, sometimes on an English muffin. But always with ketchup.

I did not threaten physical violence when I was told by the sandwich maker that they did not have any ketchup (though I’m pretty sure I could have taken her). Instead, I ate my sandwich and vowed that it would be the last time I darkened Subway’s door.

Haven’t been back. I doubt the fellow who got physical at the Walmart Subway will either. Nor the worker in that incident — he was fired.

And all for a lousy packet of ketchup. Would it be so wrong to keep some on hand for the guests who request it? Subway could even teach their staffers to sneer and say something snotty with a French accent.

They obviously don’t have a clue about good guest relations anyway.

What do you think? Ketchup or no ketchup? Please leave a comment in the space below.

{jcomments on}

We hope you find our reviews and news articles useful and entertaining. It has always been our goal to assist you in making informed decisions when spending your dining dollars. If we’ve helped you in any way, please consider making a contribution to help us continue our journalism. Thank you.

Scott's Newsletter