A sandwich so good I nearly wept

A sandwich so good I nearly wept

I'm a big fan of food and I'm always looking out for new places to eat, especially in Portland, Oregon where lots of new food places regularly spring up in food carts and restaurant pop-ups.

Over the past few years I've also grown fond of TikTok/Instagram Reels about food places that have a certain aesthetic. Usually, they're a bunch of quick-cut edits showing off some café or burger place on the other side of the planet and I enjoy them and think "huh, maybe I'll hit that someday if I ever go to New Zealand."

Recently, they've been showing up in my social feeds for places much closer to home, and often places I've been to before. More than a few have prompted me to think "jeez, that place looks amazing in your reel but everything there is served underseasoned and the ambiance inside their place is abysmal."

It's lead me to question the influence of good cameras, editing techniques, and upbeat music, because almost anywhere looks good with a bunch of jump cuts and a happy narrator describing how amazing everything is.

Dos Hermanos Bakery

This leads me to stumbling onto an Instagram Reel of a newish place in Portland doing a chopped sandwich called Dos Hermanos. I save these reels into a list of places to someday visit and in the past, the places I've tried have been mostly good (but not spectacular).

Here's the video itself, give it a watch:

I never really thought about putting a chopped salad into a sandwich before (unlike Jason) and honestly when it's all chopped up it doesn't look appetizing, instead it looks like how food probably looks in your stomach after eating. But I can tell from making my own sandwiches that there are likely some compelling reasons to mix all the ingredients like this that would result in a better, more evenly distributed filling.

And so it begins

Last week, I was free in Portland around lunchtime, so I hit up a friend nearby and we decided to check the place out. We split a large Badda Bing Italian sub on a plain white roll and they chopped it up in front of our eyes.

It was a very good sandwich. All the ingredients are perfectly mixed, the tangy vinegar they shoot over everything gave the fatty mayo-covered veggies and meats a real nice acidic kick that balanced out the richness and made you want to go back for another bite.

I did lose a bunch of the filling as it squirmed out the sides of the roll with each bite, and overall it felt like it had a little too much bread in the end. Still, I'd give it a solid 9 out of 10 so when I was in Portland running errands 24 hours later, I asked my spouse if she wanted to split one for dinner that night.

I ordered the exact same sandwich, tossed it into a cooler in my car, ran errands then did a long drive home. I don't know if two hours of sitting around helped, but the sandwich we split for dinner that evening was FUCKING AMAZING.

They served it to me on a sesame roll instead this time, and I made sure to keep all the fillings inside the roll as I ate. The second time out, there was a great added spicy hit from pepperoncinis spread into the mix. The vinegar note added the same great sour kick as before, and we both scarfed down our halves and asked each other "How good was that sandwich?!"

The next day I asked my wife if it really happened or was all a dream. I also double-checked that I wasn't influenced by not eating after a long break, nor was I exhausted after a ton of exercise. We both determined it was a really, truly a great sandwich. It's probably the best sandwich I've had in the past ten years.

And even though I ate two of them in the span of two days, I'm going to keep this as a special treat in the future, and maybe get it once every six months going forward so as not to ruin it.

If you're ever in Portland, check out the chopped sandwiches at Dos Hermanos. They're the real deal and they're spectacular.

Maybe ask for extra pepperoncinis though, it really kicks it up another notch.