The Vibe: This lunch-friendly spot in the heart of Birkdale Village has a must-see collection of music memorabilia, the staff of Lake Norman Magazine agreed during a recent visit. Oil paintings of Elvis, Bono, Johnny Cash and others were painted by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students; .45 vinyl records were donated by a regular customer; and family members of owner Justin DeSantis contributed album sleeves from such classic artists as Steve Wonder, Eric Frampton, Rod Stewart and James Taylor to decorate a wall. “Some of the musical instruments on the walls were mine from when I played saxophone and guitar when I was younger,” DeSantis adds.
Menu best bets: Mama Cass Special, $5.99 (ordered as a wrap): “Plenty of ham, bacon, shredded Swiss cheese, and banana peppers gave this wrap a little kick. Large enough that I took half of the wrap with me.” –Account Executive Chris Rohr
Hot Spicy Chicken Sandwich, $5.99. “Lots of fresh sliced chicken with cheese, barbecue sauce and just a few jalapenos for heat.” –Account Executive Jane Rodewald Southwest Fiesta (in a tomato basil wrap), $6.49. “Awesome! Lots of meat, very spicy. Enough to take home half.” –Account Executive Kim Cross
The “Rueban Studdard,” $7.99. “I had rooted for the sandwich’s namesake, Ruben Studdard, the second-season winner of ‘American Idol.’ With plenty of corned beef, melted Swiss cheese, and just the right amount of sauerkraut, the sandwich is tasty and plentiful. I swapped out the Russian Dressing for spicy mustard.”–Associate Editor Celeste Smith
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Free Spirit salad, $7.99. “Chicken on lettuce with walnuts, mandarin oranges, fresh apples, sunflower seeds and plenty of cheese was a great combination served in a huge bowl. Or, you can order from the a la carte salad bar.” –Editor Leigh Dyer
Mandarin Chicken salad, $7.50. “Fresh and delicious. Loved the dressing. Would definitely order it again.” –Targeted Publications Manager Anne Devereaux
Want to go?What: JD Rockers Subs & SaladsAddress: 16925-C Birkdale Commons Parkway, HuntersvilleHours: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. weekdays; 11 a.m.-10 pm. Fri.-Sat.; 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sun.Info: 704-987-9431; www.jdrockers.com.