You know when you spend too much time with someone, that you start mimicking each other’s mannerisms and tendencies? Example: if you live in a country where locals have an accent long enough, you’ll come back home sounding like an idiot? Like how Madonna spent a summer in England and started speaking with a British accent that led to her and the Queen having synchronized menzies? That being said, I found myself in the east end the other day, HONGRY, and decided to pay a visit to a joint I haven’t been to in a while – one of the very few places would I ever pronounce the silent “g” in sandwich.
I hit up Ciocario’s on Langilier for lunch and decided to take advantage of the very unusual, but very welcomed March weather and decided to dine al fresco. Their menu is small and concise, if they don’t serve it, you don’t need to be eating it, bro. I knew I was going to be in the area three days in advance; my jowls started to flood just at the thought of inhaling some sangwiches.
There’s no other way to go. A nice cold San Benedetto peach iced tea. Made with mineral water, this tea boasts lower… It’s iced tea. Not too sweet. It tastes like peach.
I ordered the Veal Parmesan. Two pounded veal cutlets, breaded in parm and fried; one of my favourites by far. Gently laid into a nonna roll, the meat was layered with slices of provolone and covered in red sauce. As good as I remembered it to be, the veal wasn’t encased in a “batter“, which I appreciate.
Ever eat a Häagen-Dazs ice cream bar where after 2 minutes in, the chocolate starts to warm up a bit and the slices of chocolate start to slide off as though your delicately teasing the ice cream underneath by gently undressing its chocolatey coating with your tongue? Then as you rub the ice cream over your face, people around you scoot over a seat and then even the old people won’t sit next to you on the bus? Umm, yeah, me neither. But nothing ruins a sandwich more than the batter sliding off anything. Luckily the veal parm is crusted, more than it is battered.
M had the steak sandwich – very different from the roast beef sandwich they offer, so please take notice. Thinly sliced beef, griddled and stuffed into the same nonna roll. The sandwich is topped with lettuce, tomato, marinated eggplant and pickled hot peppers. Like a naked lady walking around in the middle of downtown, not much is left to the imagination; this sandwich tastes exactly how it looks, you can already imagine how it tastes. The bread is crusty on the outside, warm and fluffy on the inside.
The perfect amount of jus and fat from the steak mixed with the creaminess of the mayo and the tart and spiciness from the eggplant and peppers inspired me to present to you first, the birth of a new word in the English language… I give to you… “Sandwich-wood”… if you know what I’m saying. A word… or should I say “scale” by which all future sandwiches should be judged and defined. That being said, if I had the whole thing to myself, I’d probably have to excuse myself and step out for a cigarette afterwards; and I don’t even smoke.
The subsequent foreplay to sandwich-wood came in the form of Ciociaro’s fries. Pretty ordinary, but how do you have a sandwich without something fried, be it fries or chips… or an alfalfa-seaweed-vegan-cardboard-shavings if you’re having a veggie sandwich.
I love sandwiches. There’s nothing more simpler or honest or delicious than a straight up sandwich. This spot has been here for quite some time now and they only do a few things, and these few things they do, they do it right. Serving up hot Italian panino and sandwiches, Ciocairo has always been a must when I’m in the area. If you’re there for the game or a stack of sangwiches to go, don’t hesitate to order an espresso, especially if you’re going back to work, you’ll need it… besides, coffee after a meal is almost a given and this is certainly not the place you want to offend anyone!