This just in from Super Fan D. Kmetz in the northeast, who adds, ” Hope they cover Portland, Maine as well, as it can hold up against the west coast’s namesake.”
Portland is a town where you can find an impressive sandwich lurking around nearly every corner at places like Meat Cheese Bread (whose green bean sandwich we have already sussed out),Bunk, and Big-Ass Sandwiches. We visit two places making ultra-handmade ingredients for their sandwiches, starting at Olympic Provisions, where we chat with resident salumist Elias Cairo and get an excellent salami sandwich, made even more awesome with a liberal smear of butter. Then we go to Kenny & Zuke’s, one of the only spots in the country making old-school pastrami from start to finish, and putting it in a damn fine Reuben.
For a bit of escapism I occasionally daydream about living in a tiny, sunlit apartment in downtown Portland. This is a serious case of “Perfect Far Away” because I have not been to Portland since 1976. That town did make an impression on me. Even then the “food scene” was adventurous and included a restaurant that seated 8, all at one table, in a room so small that our chairbacks were pressed to the walls. We had brunch, and were all puffed up with our college girl sophistication and the pure bohemia of it all.