Thanks again to all hounds for indulging my ‘sandwich contest’ concept. Your suggestions have been great so far, and it’s not too late to participate! Just post your three favorite sandwiches in the L.A. area and I will check out as many as I can and get back to you.
Today’s mini-reviews – BEEF SANDWICHES ON THE HOOF
Cheesesteak at Boos Philly Cheesesteaks - from Burger Boy
It may be that a west coast “Philly” cheesesteak starts off with two strikes against it, like a California bagel or an L.A. pizza. But someone must tell me what makes a cheesesteak authentic – are mushrooms allowed? Peppers? Yes or no to the marinara sauce? Burger Boy recommended the sandwich at Boo’s on Fountain Avenue out near Silver Lake, and it seems like the real deal: the meat is shipped in from Philadelphia, they use Amoroso rolls, and you can opt for ‘Cheez Wiz’ instead of American or Provolone (I didn’t). And it tastes darn good, if you can wait for it to cool long enough not to burn the crap out of your mouth - yowch! But bottom line – this is as good a cheesesteak as I’ve had in town with many lousy ones.
Brisket Dip at Carvery Kitchen - from Nosh
Everything about this place on Ocean Park Blvd. in Santa Monica screams chain: the name, the logo, the brick and tile walls – all design choices from some marketing firm. But it’s not a chain – at least, not yet – it’s the prototype for what will be a whole franchise of Carvery Kitchens, kind of like an upscale Boston Market. I dutifully ordered the Brisket Dip as recommended by chowhound Nosh. The meat had been soaking in a dutch oven so the texture was extremely melty and seemed more like a super-moist corned beef than brisket. The roll was warm and pliant, the side of jus oddly viscous. But there was plenty of beefy flavor and something appealingly unctuous about the package that makes me think I will be back again, if just to try their ‘Banh Mi Porkchetta’.
Chopped Beef BBQ Sandwich at JNJ Burger and Barbecue - from Film_score
Now here’s what we’re talking about – in fact it’s almost unfair. Take a great BBQ joint’s signature slow-smoked brisket and slap some slices on a roll – that’s the Chopped Beef BBQ sandwich at JNJ Burger and Barbecue on Adams near Fairfax, and it is exactly what you want. I know JNJ from when I was on a beef rib kick and the brisket is every bit as good: a perfect balance of smokiness, beefiness and texture - soft but still chewy. Crucially, they add just the right amount of bbq sauce – your choice of hot, mild or mixed (fim_score recommends mixed, I concur). For a side you want the beans – they have a fantastic smoky flavor. Thank you film_score for pointing me in this direction!
Original thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/993748
Reviews 1: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/996044
Bonus contest - match the pictures to the sandwiches