(Photos courtesy of Brian's iPhone)
My company's office happens to be located directly above the legendary Salumi Artisan Cured Meats- a mouthwatering Italian style Salumeria created by none other than Armandino Batali... the father of Iron Chef Mario Batali. I've always heard great things about the salami at Salumi. I've seen the lunchtime lines stretching around the block. I've gazed longingly at the cured meats hanging in the window... but I had never actually tried Salumi... until today.
I happen to share an office with several avid and adventurous young foodies such as myself, and today two of them- Brian and Rose- suggested lunch at Salumi (last time we went to Skillet, where I had the out-of-this-world rockfish tacos!) Being mid week, a short holiday week, and given the crazy construction on the street outside Salumi's storefront door (which also makes for a noisy workday), we figured the line wouldn't be too bad. I don't know if we were right, or we lucked out and got there just in time, but we only waited in line about 20 minutes. And boy was it worth it.
I originally wanted the daily special- Pork Cheeks Sandwich. But the closer I got to ordering, more and more salami came into view, throwing me into a tailspin. Rose got the Muffa. Brian flip flopped between the meatball and the porchetta- finally landing on the porhcetta sandwich-essentially an Italian pulled pork. I don't really even remember ordering, I was in such a daze by the time my turn finally arrived. But, with the help of the sandwich-maker-extraordinaire, I ended up with a Salami sandwich, made with the mole salami (spiced and cured with chocolate, cinnamon, peppers). The thin sliced, rich, flavorful salami was layered onto chewy ciabatta bread that was slathered with 2 delicious sauces- one oily and garlicky, the other creamy with flecks of parsley. The salami was topped with fresh pulled mozzarella and tender grilled onions and peppers. I devoured it. I licked the paper wrapping clean... had I not been at work, I probably would have tired to eat that too...
It. was. amazing. Believe what they say... it's all true. I know, you're saying 'but it's just a salami sandwich...' Well, think again, my friend. It will rock your world. All day I thought about the sandwich- with the peppery, smokey salami and the bread that soaked up the sauces just enough to be incredibly chewy and soft, yet still hold up to the fillings. Next time I want to try the meatball, made with Salumi's special recipe pork meatballs. Or maybe the grilled lamb, topped with roasted red pepper. Although... once I get in there and see the salami hanging in the case, there's no telling what I'll end up with, but at least I know it will be fantastic and well worth the wait.