The LA Book of Sandwich, Vol. 2: Midcity
Sashimi tuna. Hoagies. Lobster rolls. Let’s eat.
The sandwich is the working class hero of American cuisine.
Ham and cheese. Tuna salad. Po’ Boy. They’re the stuff of a man on a well-deserved one-hour break.
Which is the spirit behind The L.A. Book of Sandwich, Vol. 2, a compilation of all the finest sandwiches one L.A. neighborhood has to offer.
Today, we’re hitting Midcity for a Big Apple-worthy bagel, the best turkey sub in county lines and something we can only describe as a Gut Bomb.
All About the Bread: The Burrata
Yeah, yeah, yeah: the Meatball, the Godfather, the Honey Cilantro Lime Grilled Chicken … All old standbys for gourmands who frequent All About the Bread. But given this heat, we’re all about the Burrata. It’s a cold sandwich, but the cheese is every bit as soft and creamy as something grilled or melted. Finished with roasted red peppers, sundried tomatoes and pesto on a fresh, flaky roll.
Yeastie Boys Bagels: The Lox
Yeastie Boys hand-roll and boil their pillowy soft bagels before finishing in the oven, which is how they do it in NYC. They started as a truck, but are now serving their sandwiches at various Alfred’s Coffee locations, like the one in the Alley on Melrose. The Lox is typically made with smoked salmon, but occasionally they do it with a whitefish (pictured). It always has a delicious caper pesto and their homemade dill cream cheese. They sell out fast, so go early.
Mendocino Farms: Not So Fried Chicken
Nestled smacked in the middle of the healthy-to-couch-bound scale. They use roasted chicken, but add fried skin and slaw for the crunch. The spicy aioli mustard and pickle remoulade round out the flavor. Yeah, it’s a chain restaurant, but you’re not gonna see this level of sandwich — or the Boylan’s soda fountain — at Quiznos.
Soda Pops: The Chicken Bomb
If you’re hungover or just aiming to spend an afternoon supine, you can find few culinary companions as copacetic as the Chicken Bomb from Soda Pops. Warm soft baguette. Diced chicken, peppers and onions coalesce under white american cheese. This. Is. Heaven.
Cape Seafood & Provisions: The Lobster Roll
Cape Seafood & Market is mostly a market. No tables. But it has a rotating list of items you can grab for lunch, among which is the lobster roll. Chef Michael Cimarusti (Providence, Connie & Ted’s) keeps it very simple: high-quality chilled lobster, buttery roll, homemade mayo and chives. If you want to eat there, get a drink at the Coffee Commissary next door and sit on their patio.
Sack Sandwiches: Spicy Tuna
The Spicy Tuna sandwich at Sack Sandwiches (formerly Ink Sack) is the working man’s version of a tuna roll. The cold tuna salad is made with dynamite sauce and dressed in nori, pickles, lettuce and tomato. Chef Michael Voltaggio (Ink) recently updated his sandwich stand on Melrose, and added one on Sunset. There are couple of newcomers to the menu, but the Spicy Tuna and the Cold Fried Chicken still reign supreme.
Larchmont Village Wine, Spirits and Cheese: Roasted Turkey Breast
Larchmont Village Wine and Cheese is the best value sandwich in L.A. Their half sandwiches come in at $5.25 and are made with premium ingredients like shaved turkey breast and gruyère cheese. The baguettes flake perfectly but are strong enough to make it to your picnic and back without letting the aged balsamic and extra virgin olive oil soak through. Order ahead for faster service, and pick up your booze for the weekend while you’re there.