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Reviews of Chicago sandwiches.

A Sandwich a Day: Porchetta Sandwich at Publican Quality Meats

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[Photograph: Molly Durham]

Publican Quality Meats has a not-so-secret secret, and it's their porchetta sandwich ($10). Only available on Saturdays, it's the big slab of meat you can spy atop the butcher block when you walk in. You won't see it on the menu, but they make a performance out of cutting it for all eyes to see.

Prepared with a rub of rosemary, garlic, red pepper, and coriander, the meat is topped only with cucumber and red onion. Served on a soft ciabatta roll that seems an impossible vehicle for all that meat, it takes a strong jaw and controlled grasp to navigate through this sandwich. The good thing is, all that coordination is mostly worth it. The meat is sliced not too thick but not too thin, so you get a good chew. It was less tender than anticipated, but not too fatty, and the rub mixture moistens every bite. Most of PQM's other sandwiches pack more flavor than this one, like the meatloaf slathered in barbecue sauce or the sausage stuffed with truffle and taleggio. But for a serious meat lover whose main concern is biting into a thick, carefully prepared meat, this one should satisfy.

Publican Quality Meats

825 W. Fulton Market, Chicago, IL 60661 (map)
312-445-8977
publicanqualitymeats.com

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