ADVERTISEMENT

LOCKPORT – Scripts, a little sandwich shop just up the street from Lockport’s Historic Palace Theatre, oozes creativity – from the inventive cooking styles to the imaginative names given to the resulting dishes.

Just dropping in for a quick sandwich is enough to set the creative juices flowing.

The storefront shop could be a little roomier – lunchtime crowds are often elbow to elbow at the handful of small tables – but the ambience is kind of electric, like that newfangled chandelier the Phantom of the Opera liked to play with. Italian soda and gourmet tea, as well as fancy fixings to accompany your meals, are offered.

There aren’t any fancy furnishings, though; just salt and pepper shakers, a dish of napkins and drink needs. There’s one ceiling fan and a small through-the-wall air conditioner. If you need anything else, you’re kind of on your own.

But the thing is, you don’t really need anything else. Scripts is straight-up diner, in virtually every sense of the word – albeit with a fancy-ish flourish. You can get panini sandwiches, specialty sandwiches and deli sandwiches ... and that’s about it. No, actually you can get salads and soups, as well, but that is really it.

The thing about Scripts is the attention to detail with its culinary creations. Maybe that’s because many of them bear the names of the people who created them, such as the Cindy (portobello mushroom, balsamic vinaigrette, fresh greens, provolone cheese and garlic mayo on ciabatta bread, $6.50). After all, you put your name on something, you want it to be as good as possible.

Scripts’ sandwiches are just that – as good as possible. The Danny (tuna melt, $6.50) features not just any tuna, but albacore tuna, grilled into a sourdough panini bread with mellow Swiss cheese and a tomato slice. It’s crispy and chewy at the same time, a nice melding of flavors and, served with kettle chips and a pickle, makes just the right amount of food for a filling lunch.

You also can get your sandwich served with a side of greens, if you so desire. Speaking of greens, the salads were crispy fresh, as well. The chicken Caesar ($6.50) boasted tasty croutons atop nicely grilled chicken strips, with fresh parmesan cheese red onion and, of course, Caesar dressing topping the bed of Romaine lettuce. The dressing was flavorful but not overpowering, making for a wonderful salad.

For an extra $2, you can add chicken to any of the other salads that normally do not feature it: the Cobb, the Café salad (a basic garden variety), the Jamele (made with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, fresh basil, red onion and balsamic vinaigrette over Romaine). They also offer tuna or chicken salads on mixed greens, with your choice of dressing, all in the $6 range.

The soups seemed homemade – fresh, hot and tasty. We sampled the broccoli and cheddar, and the tomato basil, and both were genuinely good – thick, rich and flavorful.

That’s another things I like about Scripts – the prices are pretty unassuming. You get what you pay for, and in many cases more. You can drink well with your meal and have enough left from a $10 bill to cover the tip.

For the more adventurous types – or those folks who just want to have a sandwich named after themselves – there’s the create-your-own-deli-sandwich option for $5.95: choose from four breads, four cheeses and six meats, as well as seven different spreads/toppings. Be creative or conservative – it’s going to carry your name, after all.

Nothing on the menu tops the $7 mark, and you can feed the kids for even less – $3.99 to $4.99, depending on portion size, for anything from a grilled cheese to a PB&J (or F, as in fluff). That comes with chips and a juice box, in case you were wondering.

Scripts draws a pretty healthy crowd at dinner hours, so plan accordingly. If you’re hoping to dine in, arrive early (or late, as the case may be) to avoid the bulk of the crowd. Or you can get it to go and enjoy it in your private box. Just remember to leave a seat open for the phantom.

Scripts offers everything from a grilled cheese panini to variations on turkey, ham, corned beef and barbecued pulled pork; from marinated mushrooms to bacon, bacon, bacon! They’re all nicely done, and I’ve yet to have one that I did not enjoy thoroughly. Be sure to try the honey-infused chai tea, should you get the chance – very tasty. The Italian sodas were excellent, too.