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Filed under Features, Showcase

Hoagie Wars: East End vs. Macs Market

Two of Eagle Eye's top men set out on a quest to find out which Tyrone hoagie is better.

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East End (Left), Mac's Market (Right)

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Every great American town has its own take on the classic American sandwich.  Philadelphia has the cheesesteak, towns along the coast of Maine have their lobster roll, New Orleans has the po’boy, Primantis in Pittsburgh adds slaw and fries to the classic deli sandwich…and the list goes on.

In Tyrone, it’s the hoagie that reigns supreme.  Not just any old Subway-style hoagie, but a Tyrone hoagie, with three types of meat and provolone cheese on a soft seeded roll, piled high with raw onions and spices.

But who has the biggest and baddest hoagie in town? 

Mac’s Market or East End?

The Eagle Eye recently set out on a quest to put an end to this great debate.

First, we took the question to our social media audience.  As it turns out, the people of Tyrone’s Twittersphere are fairly evenly divided on this question. Our Eagle Eye Twitter poll brought in 132 votes. Mac’s had the edge with 55%, or 73 votes. East End had 45%, or 59 votes.

Twitter Poll

So in our unscientific poll, Macs was the winner by a relatively modest 10%.

Since this didn’t provide us with a definitive answer, we decided to take matters into our own hands. A quick trip down Columbia Avenue and we brought two of Tyrone’s best hoagies back to the Eagle Eye taste-testing room (by the way, thanks to our adviser Mr. Cammarata for purchasing the hoagies).  There we did a scientific study to come up with the final answer to the great Tyrone hoagie debate.

PRICE

Being the working class town that it is, both classic Tyrone hoagies are affordable, but East End is the most affordable.  There you will pay just $3.98 for a famous hoagie.  It’s also important to say that East End is a cash only establishment.

At Mac’s Market, the classic hoagie is an even $5. However, the hoagie at Macs is several inches longer than East End. 

If the price is the number one motivating factor in your hoagie choice, we have to give a slight edge to East End.  But if size is what matters most, go for Macs.

WAIT TIME

At Mac’s Market, our wait time was about six minutes.  At East End, we waited for roughly two minutes.  While both establishments were relatively prompt, Macs has a larger menu and is generally more crowded with people not only purchasing sandwiches and pizza but also meat and deli items.  So if you’re just looking for the quick bite to eat, East End is usually the way to go.

East End

East End Pizza interior

TASTE

Let be honest, this is what it’s all about. For our review, we broke down each element of the hoagie and reviewed them separately:

BREAD 

The bread on the East End hoagie was somewhat stiff and cold, whereas the sandwich we ordered from Macs was a bit on the soggy side, perhaps due to a more generous amount of dressing.  Advantage: Neither.

MEAT

Salami, bologna, and ham were present in both sandwiches.  On the East End hoagie, there was more depth to the meat, possibly even more of it. Yet it seemed like the quality was lower with a slightly more rubbery texture.  At Macs, there appeared to be less meat whenever you looked at the sandwich from the cross-section. However, you could taste the meat more prominently and it tore apart easier than it’s counterpart. Advantage: Macs.

CHEESE

East End and Macs Market both had provolone cheese, neither of which had a prominent taste. Honestly, both could probably do better on the cheese. Advantage: Neither.

ONIONS, LETTUCE, AND SPICES 

At East End the onions were cut much smaller than Macs with a prominent blend of spices on top. Unfortunately, the onions themselves were a bit strong.  The onions on Mac’s hoagie were larger, sweeter and fresher, but the layer of spices on top didn’t seem to have as much flavor as East End.  There was just the right amount of lettuce on a Macs hoagie and it defintiely added some additional crunch and flavor. Advantage: Macs.

TOMATOES

East End featured a good quantity of tomato that brought all the flavors together.  On the Macs hoagie, the tomatoes were not as good and you could barely tell that they were there.  Advantage: East End.

Mac Market

Macs Market interior

DRESSING

An excessive amount of oil dripped off the back of the East End sandwich.  There was a little less oil on the Macs hoagie but much of the dressing seemed to have soaked into the bread resulting in it being a bit soggy. Advantage: Neither.

THE FINAL SCORE

It was surprisingly close.  For all the passion that Tyrone has for their favorite hoagies, these two sandwiches were very similar in taste and quality.  East End exceeded our expectations, but in our personal opinion, it was not quite up to par with their rivals over at Mac’s Market.

Final score:

East End  – 6/10

Macs Market – 7.5/10

Mac’s Market is our winner!  Feel free to agree or disagree and give us your opinions in the comments.

students eating hoagies

The official taste test

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20 Comments

20 Responses to “Hoagie Wars: East End vs. Macs Market”

  1. Tom Miller on January 12th, 2018 1:49 pm

    Mac’s is better by far

    [Reply]

    Sandra J Terry Reply:

    I grew up on East End hoagies. Over the years my dad turned many people onto E.E. Something changed with the hoagies not tasting as good. I tried Macs hoagies and have been hooked ever since. Mother enjoys Macs as well. It Macs for our family.

    [Reply]

    Lorrie price Reply:

    Macs is the best by far. My husband and I have date night there a lot.

    [Reply]

  2. Andrea on January 12th, 2018 4:19 pm

    I grew up on East End hoagies and absolutely loved them but when Mac’s started making them, my family tried them mainly because they have better hours. We all prefer Macs now. I think they have more meat, or at least did at first, and it’s definitely better quality. I’ve never had an issue with a soggy roll but I’m sure it does happen.

    [Reply]

  3. Tracey Hostler on January 12th, 2018 4:21 pm

    I have had them both but by far, Mac’s has the better sub. They always seem so much fresher than East End’s.

    [Reply]

    Donna Snyder Reply:

    I grew up on East End Hoagies but I no longer like them because they are two gristly with their meat they don’t taste as good anymore and I prefer Mac’s Market Hoagies over East End any day I think Mac’s Market has a much better flavor with their Hoagies they are awesome as far as I am concerned.

    [Reply]

  4. Roseanna T on January 12th, 2018 4:27 pm

    Hands down, Mac’s has the best subs around!! Not only are they fresh, fast, & delicious but they have the friendliest family serving them up! I use to like East End then heard about Mac’s & gave them a try- the meat is so much better quality, they use the perfect amount of everything- and the roll holds up for the 20 min drive home without being a soggy mess!! Mac’s Market the whole way!!

    [Reply]

  5. JoAnna Shortridge on January 12th, 2018 4:27 pm

    Both have great hoagies! Now if only Macs could get east end’s onions! Or east end could get Macs length!

    [Reply]

  6. Diana on January 12th, 2018 4:52 pm

    I ve went to East End since the 70’s !! When new owners took over they were a little bit different !! East End has fresher bun !! Mac’s are good !! But EAST END are the best !!!

    [Reply]

  7. Melissa Spicer on January 12th, 2018 5:21 pm

    I like both for different reasons. I think each hoagies has something to offer. East end is a town classic and cannot be duplicated. Macs is a completely diff hoagie in my opinion. Just because they are kinda similar..dont mean they are comparable. Both are great. Agree with all the “findings” here too. Cute story!

    [Reply]

  8. Kristine on January 12th, 2018 5:30 pm

    When I first met my fiancee many years ago he was about East end. But then we saw Macs market and decided to give it a try… It was a major step up! I never thought East end was all it was cracked up to be and why so many people were so staoked on getting a school lunch type hoagie with meat that was on the lower end of quality. However once we started to go to Macs not only was the bread better but the meat, cheese, toppings everything had so much more flavor. The bread is soft, the meat is fresh, turkey and roast beef seamed to be chipped where as the Italian was traditional chopped style, in slices. I haven’t been able to find good quality roast beef in ages! And this by far was the best! As for the toppings, the tomatoes are so dang sweet and red, best I’ve had, and the only place I’ll eat them! The onions are sweet and there’s so much of them! The lettuce is always fresh and crisp! The oils do make the hoagie a little more sloppy but with such an amazing combination of meats, cheese, and toppings it’s ok to get a little messy! My small kids are picky and they love them! We drive from Altoona to tyrone at least twice a month, every month, to get our hoagie fix!!! All in all I can see why Macs is pulling ahead in the polls also don’t be afraid to ask for a special order like light lettus or onions, or even if you would like them tucked under your meat so it’s a little more friendly to eat! The people working their are awesome and will totally customize your hoagie to your request 🙂

    [Reply]

  9. Linda Blair on January 12th, 2018 6:20 pm

    Mac’s is my favorite hoagie, but I have tried both Mac’s and West End’s hoagies! They are highly addictive and I will travel to Tyrone from Cresson in a heartbeat to have one! 😊

    [Reply]

  10. Christy Shaw on January 12th, 2018 6:48 pm

    I prefer Macs over East End. I like it’s taste better

    [Reply]

  11. Steve Beals, Jr. on January 12th, 2018 7:12 pm

    I love out of town in the Lancaster area. Availability of the two sandwiches goes to Mac’s. When I’m in town I have a better chance of Mac’s being open. If I want to bring them home I can get the stuffings wrapped seperately so they’re not soggy when I get home. I feel that Mac’s has the freshest product of both. For me Mac’s wins.

    [Reply]

  12. Karen on January 12th, 2018 8:48 pm

    We don’t live in Blair County. Mac’s is actually OPEN when we drive through the town. Mac’s gets our business.

    [Reply]

  13. Theo weaver on January 12th, 2018 11:27 pm

    Its hands down east end all the way macs is the other hoagie place that just piggy backed off a good hoagie at a good price. East end does gotta work on being consistent with onion volume. Thats the biggest thing i noticed after new ownership seems like sometimes they may make to many onions an they break down before there used. That being said u wont catch me eating macs hoagies. Be nice to see them let u pick ur cheese too.

    [Reply]

  14. Barbara Mclaughlin on January 12th, 2018 11:38 pm

    I have had both hoagies myself and by far Macs hoagies are the bomb. They have alot more flavor to them and i love the fact that there is more onions on the hoagie because i love alot of onion on mine. Way to go Macs for making a damn good hoagie.

    [Reply]

  15. Karen Gill Watson on January 13th, 2018 6:12 am

    Grew up on East End Hoagies. They were the #1 Hoagie around. Living out of town now I still run into people who drive to Tyrone just for the East End Hoagie. Loved those onions. My choice …serve me up a cold extra onion hoagie from east end anytime.

    On a side note: Mac’s market hoagies are probably just as good. Honestly I have never had one of their hoagies but the picture in your review looks great as well.

    My edge would go towards East End – Great taste and great memories

    [Reply]

  16. Brandon Escala on January 16th, 2018 11:10 am

    let’s just face it, Mac’s is the best hoagie place in town

    [Reply]

  17. Wyatt Miles on January 16th, 2018 11:55 am

    It is all pig slop bub.

    [Reply]

We have been getting a lot more comments recently (which is good!). Unfortunately, some of them have been kind of nasty (which is bad!). Not surprisingly, most of the nasty comments have been submitted anonymously. Therefore, if you would like us to even consider publishing your comment you must use your REAL NAME and a VALID email address. If you are a TASD student please use your school email address. Thank you and please comment responsibly!

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