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Thanks to Everyone Who Entered 'Win a Book Before You Can Buy It'
Thanks for all your amazing entries to win a Serious Eats book before you can buy it!
(Man, we don't even need to bother with "Sandwich a Day" anymore; we could just re-run these comments for the next six months.)
Just kidding. (Mostly.) We honestly suggest you read through the whole list for an awful lot of excellent-sounding sandwich suggestions; it's a book in itself! But here are our three winners.
One place that's in the book:
The Midnight Cuban Press from Paseo in Seattle. Dripping wet slow roasted pork, fat, translucently brown caramelized onions, ham, melted swiss, lettuce, and a sharp garlicky mayo spread all on a crusty french roll. You have to order two every time you go because just one and you'll be sad that, even though you are full, you won't get to eat any more later in the day. —coody
Chosen because we, too, appreciate Paseo in excess, and went there three times in one of our 36-research trips to Seattle.
One place that's not:
There is only one "best" sandwich out there, America. That being, the "Raven" at Chap's Pit Beef in Baltimore, MD. Granted, I have little-to-no affinity to the city of Baltimore, aside from my predilection for The Wire. Chap's, however, and their array of house-smoked meat sandwiches. Keep it simple stupid, is a rule I tend to abide by with my sandwiches. The Francesinha in Portugal, Muffalata in Spain, Cubano, Roast Beef at Russo's in Brooklyn, etc. The geniuses at Chap's, which, by the way, is next to a "Gentleman's Club" on Pulaski Highway in a not-so-brilliant section of B-More, have decided to use quality bread, smoke their own meats, and provide only two additionals -- "tiger" sauce (a horseradish mixture like no other), and raw onions. This is all you need to enter a meaty sandwich paradise. Sit there with your Raven, and you will notice nothing else. You will be completely absorbed in the delight of eating such a sandwich. You might ask yourself "Is this okay", "Should I be doing this?" The answer, Americans, is yes. Yes, you should. The Pit Beef style of sandwich shop is nearly gone, but Chap's is clinging hard to that legacy with a simple, meaty elegance. The price, around $7.00, is hardly in proper ratio to the 5-6" of meat toppling over your bread scraps. I want one so bad right now. I live about seven hours away, so they won't be open if I leave now, but maybe I should anyway. The guys in the back are friendly, and will even talk to you about their meats. For the inquisitive type. Honestly, though, you will hardly remember paying, what the place looks like, or anything else, you will just want a second one to-go. You might even high-five a random passerby. Can I get a free one in the mail for writing this? Anyway, go to Chap's Pit Beef, eat the Raven, sit. Life mission complete. —coody
Chosen because we, too, want to drive to Baltimore for this sandwich.
And one more:
Casamento's fried soft shell crab half loaf sandwich. First, Casamento's serves a whole WHALE size (largest commercially sold size of soft shell blue crab) Louisiana soft shell crab. Second, have you seen the kitchen? You have to go through the kitchen to get to the bathroom. No fryers. Each batch of fried seafood is cooked in pots. Fresh cornmeal and flour dust the floor of the kitchen which has the smell of clean, fresh oil. Third, big, thick slices of sweet, toast. Still, the crab is so big, the legs stick out from the sides of the sandwich. Only a little mayo for me and a dash of Crystal hot sauce. Have an ice cold Dixie beer ready. Eat. The fried soft shell crab is THE best. Super crispy, without being greasy, meaty, perfectly seasoned, hot, juicy, sweet and briny, with the toast soaking up any excess juices from the crab that doesn't squirt out when you eat it. Have a swig of Dixie and repeat. In a city with many good fried seafood po' boys, you won't find a better fried seafood sandwich than this. —Yellow Bellied Butt Smoker
Chosen because we like Casamento's and the idea of legs sticking out of sandwich. And we like this guy's username.