In the span of one week, I’ve been to Victory Sandwich Bar three times – Saturday night with a friend, Wednesday night with a group of friends, and then Friday night with another friend. I think it’s safe to say that Victory is one of my favorite go-to spots.
And why wouldn’t it be? The restaurant space is fairly large with plenty of room for both small and large parties, there are more tables outside on their patio for those chilly 76°F winter nights, there’s almost always an open table with all those seating options, the offerings at the bar are right on par with the rest of Inman Park and Decatur (we’ll get into that later), their small sandwiches are creative and delicious and range from $4 – $5 (aka fantastic and reasonably priced bar food), they host an annual luau with a whole hog roast, guest chefs, and a tiki bar (I haven’t been to one of their luaus yet, but I plan to change that soon), AND they have a ping pong table. A PING PONG TABLE, FOLKS! What’s not to like??
The purveyor of good drinks and small sandwiches first opened in Inman Park. But when the original location had to close in July of 2013 to make way for a mixed-use development project (tell me where you’ve heard that before), they opened a second “temporary” location in Decatur while working to find a new space in Inman Park to re-open. The Decatur location quickly emerged as a popular addition to the Decatur Square bars and restaurants and remained open even after they re-opened the Inman Park location in 2015. Sometimes mixed-use development projects lead to really good things, like double Victory!
While Victory may be more of a bar than a restaurant, the food is no slouch. The sandwiches are the focus of the menu, but they also offer small snacks (cheddar popcorn, pimento cheese, hummus, and pickles), salads (house and caesar), and sides (ramen, root beer baked beans, potato salad, and harvest soup).
Victory has a sandwich for everyone:
- Vegetarian? Might I suggest the Okie Dokie (brie, confit tomato, artichoke, arugula, and pesto)?
- Carnivore with a hankering for some meat? How about the Porky’s Revenge (smoked pork, Texas bbq, and b&b pickles)?
- Anthropomorphic shelled reptile that’s under 20 years old, but want to pay respect to the Italian renaissance artist that your anthropomorphic rodent sensei named you after? Sounds like you want the Cowabunga Dude (pepperoni, salami, mozzarella, pomodoro, and pepperoncini).
Like I said, something for everyone.
You really can’t go wrong with any of the sandwiches on menu at Victory. I’ve tried nearly all of them, and they’re all great, but my personal favorites are the Victory At Sea (white anchovies, frisee, and lemon mayo), the Castro (smoked pork, ham, pickle, fontina cheese, and yellow mustard), and the Okie Dokie (mentioned and pictured above).
Plus, if you think their sandwiches are too small (which, okay, I get that. I usually order two sandwiches myself), depending on which location you’re at, and if you can hold out until after 10 pm, you can order one of their larger sandwiches: The Vic-Fil-A (Decatur) (fried chicken filet, hot sauce, lettuce, tomato, and pickles) or the Vic Mac (Inman Park) (I haven’t had the Vic Mac yet, but I assume it is their take on the Big Mac. But the Vic-Fil-A didn’t turn out to be exactly like a Chick-Fil-A sandwich, sooo….?).
Earlier I said that we’d talk about the drinks at Victory later – well, it’s later, so let’s talk about drinks!
Much like the sandwiches at Victory, there’s no wrong choice when it comes to Victory’s drink menu. So much so, in fact, that the main reason that Victory is one of my go-to spots is because there are multiple drinks on their menu that I specifically and exclusively go to Victory for. It’s a blessing and a curse because whenever I do go to Victory, I want to have them all!
The first of these drinks is also probably the one drink that Victory is most well known for, the Jack & Coke Slushie. Whenever I tell someone about Victory, this is always the first drink that I mention. It elicits a powerful curiosity that usually culminates in you having your first taste of a Jack & Coke Slushie at Victory (success!). It’s worth the hype.
The next drink is one of Victory’s takes on a classic cocktail, the Dark N’ Stormy. The drink itself is typical in that is uses Gosling’s Black Seal Rum, ginger beer, and lime juice, but what really sets it apart, in my opinion, is the raw brown sugar rim on the drink. It works so well with every component of the drink, and provides a touch of sweetness to a typically spicy and sharp drink.
The last of my favorites is my favorite favorite, the drink that I opt for more than the Jack & Coke Slushie and the Dark N’ Stormy combined, the Victory Libre. The Victory Libre is their take on a Cuba Libre, which is a Rum & Coke that’s made with Mexican Coke (which uses cane sugar as a sweetener). However, instead of serving up this drink in a glass like usual, the bartender pours the rum directly into the bottle of Mexican Coke. Yall, this is genius. Everyone knows that Mexican Coke tastes better than regular Coke and that Coke from a glass bottle tastes better than Coke from any other form of packaging, so just pour some rum in there with a squirt of lime juice and call it a day! Sometimes it’s the little things, and drinking a Rum & Coke, excuse me, a Victory Libre out of a bottle is one of those things.
Victory is a great place to start an evening out on the town. It’s also a great stop during your night out, as well as a great way to end the night. It’s even great for lunch! It’s cool, it’s hip. One could even call it a hipster bar, and they definitely wouldn’t be wrong. But, apparently hipsters make awesome drinks and sandwiches, so don’t let the label deter you.
Hipsters hate mainstream labels anyways.