Wednesday, May 30, 2012

It's a Seafood Sammie Smackdown

MamaCoop is on the hunt for the best Seafood sammie she can find around the big 'smoke.  With the advent of street food there seems to be an abundance of more great eats to stuff my maw with.  So I thought I'd go head to head with two Seafood sammies that I've had the good fortune to gobble up over the past couple of days.

First up, in this corner we have Porchetta & Co.  Barely about the size of a dent on Dundas Street W (just west of Bathurst), for a couple of months a year P&Co. serve up a Soft Shell Crab sammie.  Their deal is that they basically tweet out during the day when it is available.  It's a seasonal menu item and I'm told is only available until September.  The price tag is $11 bucks and for an extra couple of bucks I can turn my sammie into what the staff at P&Co. affectionately call the "Gang Banger".  Essentially this is adding porchetta to the top.  I wasn't feeling the love for and "Surf & Purf"(that's pork not beef) so I stick to the straight up simple Crab sammie.

Now in this corner, for Round Two, we have the Maine styled Lobster sammie from the newly minted street truck vendor, Buster's Sea Cove.  BSC also has a dry land spot located in the south end of the St. Lawrence Market but they don't offer up there what's on the street.  I'd been hearing tons 'o buzz on the Lobster sammies so I figured it was now or never.  On the corner of Jarvis & Queen I manage to snag a sammie to go.  The price tag at BSC is $13 bucks, comes in a box with a pickle & a small bag of Miss Vicki's crisps.

So here's MamaCoop's sweet 'n low on comparing these two sammies.  Ok, maybe this might seem like I'm comparing apples to oranges since one is crab and the other is a lobster sammie but I'm coming at this from a seafood sammie perspective.  Both sammies are served on almost identical styled east coast lobster roll buns. 

At $13 bucks the BSC Lobster sammie is a kick in the pocketbook.  A soggy pickle and a little bag of chips just don't do anything to ease that sting.  While the bun was fresh, the sammie was light in the lobster.  My first bite was nothing but bun.  Never a good start. I liked the chunkiness of the lobster but it wasn't bound together properly.  I've eaten Lobster sammies up and down the Eastern seaboard and somehow without slathering it in mayo they seem to bind it nicely.  This just wasn't happening here.  For sure the lobster is fresh but it doesn't have that lobster flavour that one expects.
I finished my sammie and I'm still hungry.  That's a ten spot, a toonie and a loonie gone from my pocket and my stomach still grumbling for more, I'm left wanting.  I look over my shoulder to the west and notice the blue of Caplansky's truck, Thundering Thelma and decide to make an unscheduled stop there to fill the still empty space in my tummy.

At $11 bucks the Soft Shell Crab sammie is all that and a bag of chips even though it doesn't come with chips.  It doesn't need them.  This sammie has crab arms and legs sticking out all over the place and I'm thinking that it's looking like it's trying to escape from under the mound of soft shredded slaw slathered across the top adorned with a sprinkle of crispy pork bits.  There is a squeeze of what I think is some sort of Aioli with an attitude on the crab and it melds wonderfully with the slaw.  This has some major crunch action going on and this sammie is stuffed to overflowing capacity.  It takes me twice as long to eat as the Lobster sammie and towards the end I'm not even quite sure I'm going to finish it off.

It's more than obvious for me who the clear winner here is.  And again I'll say that some might infer I've done an unfair comparison by comparing a street food truck serving lobster against a small established business serving crab.   I have a ton of respect for the food truck guys and they are pumping out some absolute killer grub at the pavement level so they deserve their props.  Regardless I'll stand by my comparison.

On a short side note:  The best seafood sammie buy I've ever had came last year at the very first Food Truck Eats at the Distillery District.  It was a Lobster Brioche, it sold for $5 bucks and it was put together by a couple of really cool dudes from Stratford, whose business is called Clean & Simple.  Dollar for dollar, bite for bite, the gold medal winner all the way.  It was the first and last time the Lobster Brioche made an appearance as the boys told me that since they made their own Brioche (yes, you read that right, they MADE their own Brioche), it was just too labour intensive.  Alas, I at least had the good fortune to gobble one. 

1 comment:

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