Food has become a lot more portable in recent years. It seems that just within the past year we suddenly have several food delivery companies to choose from within Polk County. We had heard good things about Bite Squad, and decided to give them a try recently.
The first step is to enter your address – this is required so Bite Squad can provide you a list of available restaurants. Delivery is only available when the restaurants are open, so some restaurants aren’t available all day. The restaurant list includes the delivery fee for each restaurant (for us, most were $3.99, but a few were more and a few were less) and a link to Yelp reviews for each business. Once you select your restaurant, you can choose items from the menu. Selecting an item takes you to a pop-up window where you can choose sides or toppings (if applicable), and enter special instructions.
We chose Firehouse Subs for our restaurant – it’s a sandwich chain that we had never been to before. There are currently 2 Firehouse Subs locations in Lakeland; our food came from the restaurant at Merchants Walk shopping center. We ordered a meatball sub and a “Club on a Sub.” One thing that frustrated us was that we didn’t see sizes for the sandwiches. Each variety was offered as small, medium, or large, but that didn’t tell us exactly how big the sandwiches would be. We ordered large for both sandwiches. In both cases, we could choose white bread or wheat – we got wheat for the meatball sub and white for the Club on a Sub. The special instructions field came in handy, because the Club on a Sub typically comes with lettuce and onions, and we asked for this to be left off.
Once you’ve completed your order, you can select a delivery date and time. We selected “ASAP,” which in our case ended up being faster than the list of available time slots. Once your order is complete, you enter payment information. Your final total will include the delivery fee, sales tax, and a suggested tip for the Bite Squad driver – the default is 20% of the cost of the food, but you have the option of changing this (or entering $0 and giving the driver a cash tip). We left the 20% default amount.
The estimated delivery time was updated throughout the process, but in this case it never varied by more than a few minutes. We were impressed with how quickly Firehouse Subs completed the order, and how quickly it was delivered. The entire process took a little over half an hour. Once the driver left the restaurant with our food, a map appeared on the web site to show his progress. When the driver arrived, a message popped up on the screen, and we received a text alert.
The driver was friendly and efficient. The food was transported in an insulated bag and was still hot when we received it.
The large subs ended up being about 12 inches. And they were both outstanding, easily the best chain subs we’ve had. The meatball sub had provolone cheese, marinara sauce, and Italian seasonings. Everything tasted fresh, the meatballs were substantial, the bread was fresh. It was “wheat” bread but certainly didn’t appear to be whole grain bread, so that would have been a nice option. But the sandwich really was excellent.
The Club on a Sub was equally delicious. The ingredients include smoked turkey breast, honey ham, pepper bacon, Monterey Jack cheese, with mayo, mustard, and tomato (as mentioned, it normally includes lettuce and onions, but we ordered ours without and it was prepared as requested). The toppings were generous, the bacon was well cooked, the bread tasted fresh. We liked the amount of condiments (mayo, mustard, etc.) applied, because they tasted good but there wasn’t so much that they were spilling off the sandwich.
Both sandwiches came with a pickle spear on the side. It’s worth noting that the Firehouse menu includes a veggie sub sandwich as well as a few salads.
Good show! We were very happy with the Bite Squad delivery service and the quality of food from Firehouse Subs. With taxes, delivery fee, and tip, our total came to about $30. Of course, it would be less expensive to go to the restaurant, but if you really want or need delivery, our experience with Bite Squad was very encouraging. Firehouse Subs is in Merchants Walk shopping center in Lakeland, and the Bite Squad web site lists many other restaurant options, depending on your specific location. Enjoy!