After a brief hiatus (during which the entire judging panel was removed to the Bay Area for a month, but I'm back now) the Sandwich Contest is now in full swing. All new entries have been duly recorded and are on the to-try list.
Remember the rules: suggest up to three noteworthy LA area sandwiches and a description. We scramble to sample your favorites and report back- the lucky winners will be duly celebrated and awards will be distributed. Ceremonies are slated for early fall.
The window for submissions will close soon so please hurry.and get those entries in. See earlier 'Sandwich Contest' posts for previous entries and reviews - no need to suggest Langers or Phillipes again. And for all current contestants - be sure to peruse the following reviews, your sandwich might be among them!
CLEMENTINE – Century City
“Liverwurst, Bacon, Onion & Mayo” - NYCnowLA
A special treat – simple and effective – they went for a traditional lunchbox style rather than some nouveau take. White bread, slabs of liverwurst, bacon strips – lettuce of course, and a thin layer of sweet onion relish. The taste and texture of the liverwurst shines through. My colleagues thought mustard might work well but I thought it was perfectly balanced in its classic minimalism. NYCnowLA has written to say that this sandwich has been discontinued – big mistake, Clementine – but contest rules clearly state (paragraph 12) that “any sandwich sampled by the judges expressly for contest consideration” remains eligible for an award. Good luck!
SKRATCH – Culver City
“Braised Pulled Pork - truffled pulled pork, fig, grape compote, green apples, goat cheese on La Brea bread” – CarlieInLA
A high concept that works! Not the prettiest sandwich to look at but a serious contender – every ingredient adds a distinct flavor and the combination really delivers. The pork is juicy and the truffle flavor rings through; the goat cheese is not overpowering and the fruit elements – apple, fig and grape jam are just the right sweet to balance the savory meat. Stop by Skratch at Hughes and Washington in Culver City (weekdays only) and try one of these – then tell me why this isn’t a winner.
FELIX CONTINENTAL CAFE - Orange
“Choripan sandwich (spicy sausage, ask for Felix sauce on the side)” - ErikaK
Tucked in a corner of antique-store circle in Orange County, this Cuban restaurant serves up the Choripan – a baguette piled with spicy, dense, crumbled fried chorizo and plenty of it, with maybe some onion in there. Do you love chorizo? I do – I thought this sandwich was awesome, even if it nearly killed me. Well, that’s an exaggeration. It did slow me down for about three days, though. I didn’t think soupy, tomato-based Felix sauce added materially though the fries were excellent. Try this sandwich – but show it some respect.
BANH MI CHO CU - Westminster
“Banh mi xiu mai” – Das Ubergeek
Can’t go wrong with any of the Banh Mi at Banh Mi Cho Cu – at least I’ve never had a bad one. The ‘xiu mai’ – usually translated as ‘meat ball’ – is filled with white chunks of ground pork and the usual banh mi accoutrements: pickled veggies and fresh cilantro and peppers. The ‘bi’( pork skin) is one of my favorites – so juicy, and a ‘dac biet,’ (a combination of cold cuts) is always great. If you haven’t had one of these Vietnamese sandwiches yet let this be your wake-up call.
MILK – West Hollywood
“media noche” – Jacinthe
Interesting place worth a visit, hip and retro at the same time, full of chrome and tile. They seem to specialize in comfort food, especially desserts. My sandwich was quite decent – a hot pressed affair of shredded pork (sliced meat more typical in a media noche but no matter) cheese and pickles and – as Jacinthe mentions – it traveled quite well. Not quite the Skratch pulled pork nor Cafe Tropical’s authentic Cubans, but I could see stopping in for another if I’m in the neighborhood.