Serious Eats: Chicago
A Sandwich a Day: The Reuben at Paramount Room
Most reubens are little more than excuses to cover up mediocre corned beef with a blanket of Swiss cheese and creamy dressing (usually Thousand Island or Russian). But what if a place constructed a reuben with a fine base of freshly sliced corned beef—the kind that you wouldn't mind eating solo with a knife and fork or (if needed) greedily with your fingers? Well, then you have the reuben at Paramount Room.
Made in-house and thinly sliced to order, the fat streaked corned beef is tender and juicy, two things I don't usually associate with the cured product. With meat this good, the restaurant keeps the standard reuben toppings to a minimum. Yet even with the relative restraint, why does this sandwich come off so unhinged?
It's puzzling. When the sandwich arrives, you'll look at it and wonder how you'll tackle half of it. Minutes later, the sandwich is gone and you're busily hunting down any corned beef scraps that fell off during the manhandling process. And by you, I mean me.