When Meat & Bread burst onto the scene in Vancouver, it upped the ante when it came to the good ol' sandwich. Many have followed since then including ones located in the burbs. My favourite amongst the bunch is Big Star out in New West, yet they do not offer a Porchetta such as Meat & Bread. However, when I was in Lonsdale Quay one day, I noticed that there was one on the menu at The Sandwich Shop. Could we actually have a legit competitor, out in North Van no less? Well, only one way to find out...
Naturally, I gave the Porchetta on ciabatta a try first. It consisted of caramelized onion, garlic jam, arugula and cracklings. When I didn't see a pork roast or anything of the sort under the heat lamp, I should've known that my sandwich would be cold-to-lukewarm. The pork itself was not hot which didn't do it justice. I liked the cracklings as they were crunchy, but nothing else stood out other than the unnecessary addition of overpowering truffle oil. Even the caramelized onions didn't add any impact. There was a dire need for spice and acidity here. Fortunately, the Korean Short Rib was much more flavourful. It was dressed with kimchi, pickled daikon, green onion and sesame seeds. I found the short rib to be moist and tender where the kimchi added spice and crunch. With extra crunch and acidity, the daikon livened up the existing flavours. However, the moisture in the sandwich killed the bread on the inside and things got really messy and soggy.
I returned one more time to try their Pulled Pork sandwich which was soggy on the bottom before I even dug in. There was a positive to this though as the pork was moist and no stringy. It was bathed in a mild BBQ sauce that was on the sweeter side, yet not overly sweet. The crunch from the coleslaw did its job, but I would've liked to see more acidity. Overall, I thought the offerings from The Sandwich Shop to be pretty average. There is definitely potential, but ultimately, the sandwiches don't really deliver as their descriptions might suggest.
- On the right track...
- Meats are generally on point
- People are nice
- Pricey for what you get (portion-wise)
- Why have a heat lamp when the pork is not there?