Category Archives: Uncategorized

Life. Sandwiched Between Birth and Death.

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Between adulthood and your finish.

We like lists. I like lists. Lists are arbitrary. Lists are artificial.

We like life. I like life. Life is arbitrary. Life is…so real it is artificial.

Checking off items on a list and noting the dopamine rush – accumulate accumulate accumulate yes! – is my jam jam jam marmalade.

Speaking/writing of marmalade I will never get to France and eat these sandwiches and checkcheckcheck them off a listlistlist. I am familiar with most of them. Does familiarity satisfy?

All so delicious. It is food after all, that weird stuff we put in our mouths to masticate, taste, eat, swallow, digest. Weird, wonderful, sensual, sustaining. Ah. Gah. Yes. Do you want to live forever? No, you do not. Nevertheless, life’s glories are limitless, unmeasurable, vibrating.

Not rushing off to France to eat, yet noting the range of my desire. Feeling more alive for it. Sandwich my desire between buttered bread please. Then take a luscious bite, chewchewchew noting the barbarianism, … of it and STRETCH OUT WITH ALIVENESS.

Merci, Monsieur Spaulding!


Pile On the Birthday Wishes

April 16th, 1936. The birth of the Dagwood!

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Dagwood Bumstead, sandwich connoisseur. Just take a close look – sardines, sausages, chunk of cheese. Nothing individually wrapped, nothing pre-sliced. Dagwood, you’re my guy.

Colossally glorious creations.

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Happy birthday to ya and many happy returns! 

Mustard Plaster

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Mustard photos by Stacy Zarin Goldberg. Art direction by Jennifer Beeson Gregory. Styling my moi.

Plastering is an art, I am told, and I believe it. Plasterers are rare and their artworks are diminishing. Such a shame.

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Mustard is alive and well and has become an art as well. Did you know that we are breeding sommeliers of mustard?

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Yes, everything. Read about it here. When a school for braunschweigiers opens, I’m in.


If You Give a Girl a Steak

She will want to steep some rosemary in olive oil. And is she makes a little rosemary oil, a charred lemon or two will follow.

Voraciously sub food brand 02/2019Photo by Tom McCorkle for the Washington Post (styling by moi!)

If she goes to the trouble to make rosemary oil and charred lemons she will certainly pull out the nice salt. And if she pulls out the nice salt she will want a good piece of bread.

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Photo by Helen Norman for Bakery de France  (styling by moi!)

And on that bread, she will stack slices of steak, drizzles of rosemary oil, squirts of warm lemon juice and a shower of salt. Any girl with a good steak will want to make a sandwich. Indeed she will, any girl worth her weight in salt. Mais oui, sir! Mais oui!

Annnnd, as promised, the Slow Roasted Steak recipe from Becky Krystal at Voraciously. This preparation is a wonder.


Enjoy Every Sandwich. On National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day and Every Day.


The day I write a list of bests is the day the world turns so slowly we are given a thousand hours between sunrise and sunset. Bests, bests, bests. The best sandwich is the last sandwich eaten. So very many sandwiches, and more inking up the papers every minute.

Thank you, Look-Out-Tina-Brown-Amanda for linking me to the non-inking pages of  Food and Wine’s Best Sandwiches in the U.S.  Thank mana they did not stretch their greasy hands worldwide. It would all just be too much.

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Just around the corner from the the cozy digs of the Lunch Encounter, this Muff-A-Lotta from David Guas’ Bayou Bakery in Arlington, Virginia tops the list. Number one of twenty! Hooray for you, David, and your divine sandwich.

A barrage of familiars, astonishingly non-trendy, the list is a comforting collection of sandwich spots that have been known to deliver sybaritic sighs from those of who have not leapt off the carb wagon. I remain an attached rider, my knees hanging tight to bread, no thank you Jack Nicholson, j’adore un sandwich.

Wishing all a notable Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day, this year and all years. Take each bite with note.

the best thing she ever ate. yet.

She will eat one, Fanny she is. She will eat one with a mouse. She will eat one in a house. She will eat one on a wall. She will eat one in a hall.


The Sandwich Hall of Fame, no less.

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From the Food Channel Website:
We’re honoring the all-time favorite sandwiches in the Sandwich Hall of Fame because it’s all about the bread and what’s in between! If you’ve never had a BL”G”T, Eddie Jackson will tell you where to go. Fanny Slater hasn’t missed a week without her “Friday Special,” and Katie Lee heads to a small shop in New York to get the best Italian hoagie she’s ever eaten. And Southerners don’t have to travel to Philadelphia for the best cheesesteak, as Alton Brown reveals a hidden gem in Atlanta.


In six degress of Kevin-Bacon-Lettuce-and-Tomato-Land, Fanny Slater is the fine, fine sandwich eating niece to My-Main-Sandwich-Man-in-New-York, JAF. Kind enough to clue me in, MMSMINY, sent along the link to the Sandwich Hall of Fame episode featuring the MILBURN DELI. The MILBURN DELI. Shouting it: The MILBURN DELI. Thank you, JAF. I am righteously indebted.


Choosing favorites has never been a happy pastime for me. Do I hafta? No, I do not. Neither do you. So…remember that the Milburn blasts the New Jersey Joe into the universe of STELLAR SANDWICHES. (The Joe with, uh, meat, not tuna. Got it?)

Why there is not a Sandwich Joint Hall of Fame, I do not know. Perhaps because the Milburn is the Sea Biscuit of sandwich joints. No one can touch ’em. Period.


At this rate, The Lunch Encounter will become LRoy’s Lunch Encounter. Deservedly. He’s taking a mess o’ Joe’s for the team. Poor thing. Not.

So, this is where we separate the true believers from the “can I have mine on toast with no mayo please.”

If you’re a religious reader of Lisa’s blog (that is, on your knees, begging for forgiveness), you’ve heard about the New Jersey Sloppy Joe before (all hail the Milburn Deli). Not a mess of ground beef and tomato sauce, but a triple-decker cold cut ‘wich. Best-man (twice!) James provided a long exegesis a ways back, but here I was this week and it was as good (and exactly he same) as my first, 45 years ago. How do they do that? Like this:



That’s 3 thin slices of rye (buttered), your choice of ham (mine), roast beef (James’), or turkey (WTF?). Swiss. Cole slaw. Russian dressing. To die for (I’m sure some have. Plus, often served when sitting shiva. Make a note for when I pass). Ta-da:


Rules for eating: left side first. Then the right. Save the wedge for last:


That first bite of the wedge is better than sex (first, last, ever).

I once had two Joes in one sitting. No problem. Looking forward to doing it again. Then dying.

Know what? What? I’m driving through Jersey on Saturday and I’m gonna stop for a Joe. Life is long and I need the calories.








Take That!


Make it on trend! And make it snappy, while you’re at it, dammit!

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Last winter, midway through my hourlong commute into Midtown Manhattan — having traversed part of Queens and all of chic north Brooklyn — I found myself reading about how a dish called a “chopped cheese,” a sort of cheese steak made with hamburger meat, had been gentrified. Once a specialty of uptown bodegas, the sandwich had caught the attention of novelty-seeking foodies: Whole Foods was selling them for twice what they cost in the Bronx, where they went for $4 and still do. Read on here.

Been a long time since I blogged and rolled. Meanwhile, many a sandwich rock has been turned by a novelty-seeking-foodie – sweet Jesus save me from the onslaught – hoping to unearth the next cool thing, to carry it into the gaze of media/social media and shine a light on it so bright that it is forever altered.

Out of it’s natural habitat, does an indigenous sandwich taste as good?


Into the Wild-ish in Search of Our Sandwich Tribe

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I heard it there first, at work for the Washingtonian, wrangling sandwiches in their boardroom. Community carries a first-rate club. So off we set, Did-You-Know-She’s-Canadian Michelle and I, across the river on a Saturday sandwich safari.


Community’s dining room is attractive. Flawlessly so. Set down, whole plaid cloth.

She took our order and was calm. We liked her and she seemed happy to be there communing with the customers.


Nice wich. Well done. #notaclub


So well done that it got me thinking. Is community formed gradually, or can it be sprung wholecloth? Is it created by a flawed journey, with as much to disdain and dislike as to admire and adore? Yes, I think so.


The food was good. The name – Community – set my standards beyond capability for an establishment sans histoire. Or for any establishment. Community is deeply personal. With proper fairy dust, instant, although rare. More likely it takes time, weathering, fits and starts, adaptation.


Michelle and I are community. The dictionary term is shockingly dry so I am upping the ante to include the sharing of sandwiches. The tip of the toast point. Venture down to find the sharing of stories, theories, flights and fancies.



I wonder, has Community attracted a community? Is there such a thing as a regular anymore? We need to go there first thing in the morning and see if we can find tables of codgers drinking coffee and joking with the waitresses.


Should you exit without satisfaction, there is a donut window. Or perhaps you have arrived without satisfaction. There is a donut window. Find your community in a sugar rush. It’s brief. It will tide you over till the real thing.


Passenger Side

Along-for-the-Ride Heidi, who rides shotgun for fun on a regular basis, beamed this design missive along to the Lunch Encounter. We can go along with gusto on anything that is “For the Fun of It”, particularly if the ride includes good design. Along-for-the-Ride Heidi drives too, and drives good design.

Click on the link for an eyeful of a ride through sandwich country and company.  A lunch encounter that will leave you yearning, Design for the Fun of It will shift your stick.

Thanks, H7!

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Bow Down to Geometry






and let us not forget

the TRIANGLE, king and queen of sandwich math

Curtsey to your roots, your origins, your primal shapes. Before you can freestyle it and become a banh mi, torta, reuben or rachel, with your stuff hanging out all over the place, you must first master the basics, the shapes that are tidy and contained, simple and plain. Then onward to the mess that is a sandwich, the sandwich that is contained by your fingers-lips-napkins-tongue-teeth. Bow down and then stand, straight-backed and ready, math ready, the curves of condiments noted.

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thank you, mike rhode of comicsdc, our link to the world at large