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Mar 22, 2008 01:45 PM

An effusive tale of an honest lamb sandwich

Do you sometimes ever just crave a simple, honest lamb sandwich?

My ideals: The sandwich should provide a generous quantity of hot, tender lamb. The meat should be lean so as to avoid the nasty gaminess which scares a lot of folks off from lamb, but it should still retain the heady undertone of 'lambiness' that beef lacks. And it doesn't need too many supporting actors - its elegance lies in its straightforwardness. So far, my favorite interpretation is the lamb sandwich at La Rotisserie off Rt 9 in Chestnut Hill.

Their interpretation:

* Moderately thick (1/4''-1/2'') slices of hot roasted lamb - intensely juicy with a glossy sheen mixed with a slight bit of char. It looks to be cooked about 'medium' - tender, but certainly not bright pink nor red in the middle. Nothing worse than overcooked, dry lamb.

* A forearm of soft baguette that's not too thick to overpower the sandwich. The crust, however, still has a firm exterior 'thud', reminiscent of a good banh mi loaf.

* A micro-thin layer of mayo, just to add a touch of creaminess to each bite.

* Thick-cut slices of fresh tomato, which were surprisingly decent for being off-season.

When assembled as such, it becomes a succulent, satisfying-to-hold vehicle to deliver unadulterated strips of hot rotisserie lamb. After a few recent trips to La Rotisserie, I was quite delighted to find something that was the complete opposite of a very pretentious lamb sandwich I had at Cardullo's, an overpriced and underwhelming wad of paper-thin slices of cold, flavorless lamb, needlessly overpowering dill mustard, smothered by too-thick slices of dark bread.

So fellow hounds, anyone know other places to get lamb sandwiches? I checked Darwin's website and nothing lamby appears. Any other ideas?

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  1. Artu's roasted lamb with spicy eggplant is a great sandwich, a little pinker than you describe, very juicy, on good crusty bread, Simple and satisfying. But your description of the La Rotisserie version makes me want to go right out and try it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: yumyum

      Ooh, I've been meaning to try Artu. That sounds exceptional with eggplant!

      1. re: Prav

        It IS quite delicious. I lunch there once or twice a week. Actually most of Artu's sandwiches are very good and reasonably priced.

        Their roasted pork and eggplant is almost as good as the lamb and eggplant.

    2. Hm, I'm so enamored of the near perfect chicken salad at La Rotisserie that on those rare occasions I'm out Rte 9, that's invariably what I get. Good to know about the lamb, though.

      My go-to lamb sandwich is on the lunch menu at Antico Forno.

      1. Artu's version is a must try.

        1. I had a good lamb sandwich at Matt Murphy's in Brookline, with some good beer and cider:

          1. The lunch special Lamb Naanwich at the Punjab in Arlington Center is excellent, and ideal for take-out Indian. It has a cucumber raita dressing and some other veggies along with a generous serving of tender lamb rolled into freshly baked naan.