Italian markets often have a counter where you can have juicy "submarine" sandwiches made to order. They're great for picnics, and some places make sandwiches up to 6 feet long for parties.
* Bay Cities Italian Deli: The most popular sandwich here for the last 70 years has been the God Mother: salami, mortadella, ham, prosciutto and capocollo on a fresh Italian roll baked on the premises. Sandwiches are customized to order. You can order anything you want--avocado, specific olive oils or vinegars; if they have it in stock, they'll put it on. (Subs, $2 to $9.) Bay Cities Italian Deli, 1517 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica, (310) 395-8279.
* Mario's Italian Market: This Glendale market does a very brisk sandwich trade. Chose from any number of hams, salami, capocollos, prosciuttos (imported and domestic) and cheeses; your sub comes on an Italian roll dressed with lettuce, tomato, onions, mozzarella and a mix of mustard and mayo. Try the superb winy-garlicky salami called Bebe Jesus. (Subs, $4.25 to $6.50.) Mario's Italian Market, 740 E. Broadway, Glendale, (818) 242-4114.
* Claro's: This San Gabriel Valley chain of markets features luscious sandwich counters where you can nab a ready-made Italian combo (capocollo, ham, Swiss and provolone with lettuce, tomato, a garlicky Italian dressing and pickled peppers) or custom order virtually any other Italian cold cut sandwich. (Subs, $1.99 to $6.99.) Claro's Italian Markets, 1003 E. Valley Blvd., San Gabriel, (626) 444-4957; 19 1/2 E. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, (626) 446-0275; 322 S. Glendora Ave., West Covina, (626) 918-8818; and three other locations.
* Dino's: Try the prosciutto here, or the copa (capocollo) or Genoa salami, or the Italian combo with three meats. Subs come on a roll with Italian dressing, lettuce, tomato and peppers. (Subs, $2.75 to $4.75.) Dino's, 28641 S. Western Ave., San Pedro, (310) 832-9786.
* Frumento's: The most popular sandwich at this Montebello deli counter is the 6-inch torpedo: mortadella, cotto salami, imported ham and provolone cheese on a seeded roll with mustard, mayo, lettuce, tomato, pickles and peppers. But with over a hundred different sandwiches, there'll be something for everyone. (Subs, $2.99 to $6.99.) Frumento's Italian Market Deli, 214 W. Beverly Blvd., Montebello, (323) 721-2071.
* Cibo's: In Montrose's Italian deli, one of the most popular sandwiches is a pastrami with lettuce, tomato, mustard and either mayo or Cibo's Italian dressing on an Italian roll. Also popular is the prosciutto sub with fresh mozarella and roasted peppers, and the chicken Caesar on a roll with prosciutto. Conventional subs are also available. (Subs, $3.99 to $5.99.) Cibo Italian Deli, 2529 Honolulu Ave., Montrose, (818) 249-2532.