Restaurant Review: Hungry Bear has great sandwiches

Hungry+Bear+Restaurant

Hungry Bear Restaurant

By Ryan Downs

Staff Writer

 

Tucked away in a corner of Escondido near Centre City Parkway is the Hungry Bear Restaurant, a personality-rich and unique sub-shop whose notoriety has apparently managed to reach San Marcos.

Hungry Bear is open most of the day and is usually crowded, a fair example of its popularity. As a result, it’s not uncommon for the restaurant to become packed, and the line can go out the door during lunchtime. However, Hungry Bear makes good use of its space, and has plenty of seats and tables. As a result, strangers will often sit down with one another, contributing to an overall friendly atmosphere.

The Hungry Bear offers a wide array of various different sub sandwiches with various meats including steak, chicken and teriyaki. A regular size sub will generally cost about $7.99, where a more specialized sub of a similar size will usually cost a dollar more. Larger subs can cost as much as $13.

Hungry Bear is significantly pricier than Subway and is a bit slower but it also offers a more complete and filling sandwich. The staff, at least upon my visit, was very friendly and had an overall positive attitude that no doubt contributed to the calm and patient tone of the customers in line. The space can become rather cramped, especially while waiting for an order, but the staff makes sure that the customers, who can snack on chips and a drink for just $2 more, are not kept for too long. In my case, I received my sandwich order before too much time had passed.

Given its rather secretive location, (there are no other restaurants close by) it was surprising to see how many people had flocked to the restaurant. At 2 p.m. there was still a crowd, despite the fact that most people’s lunch break had already ended. The enthusiasm of the customers, and the consistent size of the line, should justify the popularity of what initially looked like a hidden eatery.

For those interested in a tastier and more filling sandwich than the usual fare, the Hungry Bear is open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturdays and 11 a.m. through 5 p.m. on Sundays. The Hungry Bear is located at 302 El Norte Parkway in Escondido.

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