Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Cold Weather, Warm Sandwich (Part 1)

Greetings Readers and Sandwich Lovers!

I am back from my trip to the East Coast, but not all had gone as planned.

Originally the goal for the blog was to not only sandwich in Philadelphia, but also New York and Washington DC. I had hoped to build up quite a collection of sandwich outings that I had been researching for months.

Numerous roadblocks surfaced with that plan.

For starters, I caught a stomach bug that was going around in the Northeast which sidelined sandwiching as my stomach fought back against me for a number of days, and caused me to cancel my trip to DC altogether.

Secondly, the entire week was absolutely freezing. The day I was in New York the high temperature was only 27. So I had to cut my trip short, but not before I revisited a place I hadn't been for about 6 years.

Carnegie Deli.

This place is known far and wide, even by people who had never been there or even in Manhattan.

I'm sure if you live in or spend more time in the city you could find many other quality delis, but this is THE one of prominence and fame.

Years ago I had tried THE sandwich of sandwiches here: The Woody Allen.

This is a sandwich that is stacked about 6 inches high with pastrami and corned beef with only four small triangles of rye bread keeping the two halves of the sandwich together. It was a monumental task that, sadly, I never finished.

This time around I figured I would tone it back a bit to have a sandwich that would be much more manageable to eat by one person in one sitting. I simply ordered a pastrami sandwich on rye, something that I haven't had in a few days.

Or hours.

Though not as tall as the Woody Allen, this sandwich was still stacked about 4 inches high with freshly sliced, warm pastrami.

This meat was absolutely delicious. Slow cooked for an extended period of time with the slight bite of pickling spices. The flavor was complemented well with spicy deli mustard that I added, but besides the meat, there wasn't anything else on the sandwich.

So while I did love this pastrami sandwich, it was essentially like eating a pile of delicious sliced meat with four scraps of bread. I would have enjoyed some onions, pickles, cole slaw or even Swiss cheese to top it off and add a little textural contrast to the sandwich, because as much as I love pastrami, I like a little variety too.

My return to Carnegie was much more successful than my previous visit, and while many people will enjoy a plain pastrami and bread sandwich, I was hoping for something above and beyond the usual. While the meat was some of the best pastrami I have ever tasted, this sandwich left me wanting more.

And so ended my trek through the cold streets of Manhattan. Wanting to stay for more sandwiching adventures, but absolutely too cold to wander anymore, I left looking for my next place to review in Philadelphia.

Until next week, Readers...

The Pastrami Sandwich
*** 1/2 Stars
Carnegie Deli
854 7th Avenue
New York, NY

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

It May Be Winter, But It's BBQ Time

Greetings, Readers!

I must admit that only a few weeks into the new year, and I've already broken some of my resolutions.

Mainly the one with trying to eat more pork.

This past week I visited a place that has been on the back of my mind ever since they went under renovations last year: Kansas City BBQ Company of North Hollywood.

Now I know you may be skeptical. How could any place in North Hollywood create BBQ as good as the city it's named after, which itself is a bastion of delicious BBQ?

Well, bear with me for a moment here, because you may be surprised.

Back to my breaking of resolutions...

When I arrived at Kansas City BBQ, I had planned to order the sliced pork sandwich and it was on the tip of my tongue when I was asked for my order, but at the last moment I ordered the sliced beef brisket sandwich (hey it's listed as one of their most popular items!).

The sandwich is impressive in size. A double-decker sandwich with three slices of standard white bread, the sliced brisket was delicious. Cooked in their barbecue sauce for twenty (yes TWENTY) hours prior, this thinly sliced meat falls apart in your mouth with each bite.

The brisket is full of smoky (from hickory wood) and spiced flavors (a secret combination of in-house spices) that just permeate your being. The white bread isn't even a factor in this sandwich really. It holds together, but its true function is just to serve as a vehicle for the brisket to be eaten.

So does it live up to the standard of true Kansas City barbecue? Well, I'm sure that if you sat down to a traditional barbecue place in that area, you'd find some pretty amazing restaurants, but honestly The Kansas City BBQ Company does an amazing job at creating delicious barbecue sandwiches far away from the area generally associated with the style of food.

For sides, definitely get some of the baked beans (full of smoky flavor and shredded beef) as well as the potato salad (a mildly spicy mustard based style). You won't be disappointed.

So Readers, I'll be wrapping up for a bit here in Los Angeles, as I will be back east next week and sandwiching in Philadelphia, New York and possibly DC. I have some ideas picked out, but if you have any suggestions, I would gladly take them.

Until next week...

Sliced Beef Brisket Sandwich
**** 1/2 Stars
Kansas City BBQ Company of North Hollywood
10863 Magnolia Blvd.
North Hollywood, CA 91601

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Sandwiches....For Breakfast?

Greetings, Readers!

I realized the other week not that sandwiches can be for breakfast (as I've done that numerous time), but I realized that I rarely review them on the blog.

So this past weekend, while out wandering The Grove in Hollywood, we sat down to brunch at the French inspired Marmalade Cafe.

A sunny, open and airy little cafe along the main drag in The Grove, Marmalade Cafe was made to have brunch in.  Not only the atmosphere but their selection of breakfast/lunch hybrids is excellent.

Deciding to pass on the tempting Colorado Lamb Burger, I went with Bobby's Breakfast sandwich: two fried eggs, applewood smoked bacon, crisp lettuce, a slice of tomato and pepper jack cheese on toasted sourdough bread.

With a side of roasted potatoes this is an excellent brunch offering.

I may have also had it with a blood orange margarita (I totally did. I love blood oranges. Love).

The eggs, cheese and bacon provides the typical breakfast offering with crisp and fresh lettuce, as well as a non-mealy tomato that combined added a clean tasting contrast to the fried eggs and bacon.

Though don't misinterpret me. The eggs were perfectly cooked and the bacon had a crispness without being overcooked. Combined, they were delicious.

The sourdough bread as well, was toasted to perfection and held together until the end of the meal.

Overall, this is an excellent entry in anyone's brunch repertoire and you should definitely visit Marmalade Cafe if you ever stop at the grove.

But somehow I forgot until after we ate that Gordon Ramsay's The Fat Cow is also located at The Grove, a place I have been wanting to visit since their opening a few months ago, but this was at least a very enjoyable replacement experience.

Next time, Chef Ramsay!

And until next week, Dear Readers...

Bobby's Breakfast Sandwich
**** Stars
Marmalade Cafe
The Grove
Los Angeles, CA

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

New Year's Resolutions

Greetings, Readers!

Hopefully 2013 finds you well so far and that you finished celebrating the holiday season in style.

But now it's back to work.

I've decided that there are a few things that need to be accomplished here at The Danger Sandwich in order for me to improve my sandwiching abilities.

1.) More vegan sandwiches. Why, you ask? Did I decide to go vegan for the new year? Not a chance, but I do enjoy vegan meals quite often as an occasional substitution from my love of bacon and other meats. Also, it seems as if I'm just tempting my non-meat eating readers here with all of my delicious, delicious bacon stories.

Speaking of which...

2.) More pork sandwiches. Why? Why not? I'm not talking pork bacon but any type of pork product sandwiches. I've done a few, but not quite a lot.

3.) Get outside of Los Angeles....more. I've been to a few other cities to review sandwiches, but I think now is the year to really step up the travelling game for sandwiching. Which cities are you in readers? Is there a sandwich that I should come to town to try?

So those are my ideas to step up the sandwiching game this year. What other suggestions do you have Dear Readers?

I eagerly await your constructive and helpful criticism.