Last Look | Anatomy of a Sandwich

With a fierce devotion to house-made ingredients (including charcuterie, bread, and condiments), the Noble Sandwich Company has amassed a cult following of pastrami and corned beef enthusiasts. We wrote about the m a few years ago when they opened the original location (an unassuming storefront that quickly became an essential road trip for foodies). Since then, they’ve expanded (a few miles down 620), and the second restaurant on North Burnet Road opened last month. Whether you swing by for breakfast (try the milk biscuit with country sausage and black pepper gravy) or lunch (for the namesake Noble Pig—spicy ham, pulled pork, provolone, and bacon—or a pimiento cheese with smoked green onions, romaine, and olive oil pickles), you quickly understand that their sandwiches are anything but simple. For instance, the pork in their pulled pork sandwich is slathered with herbs and slow-roasted, moistened with the reduced jus and layered with house-cured ham and bacon.

“Everybody understands what a sandwich is,” says Brandon Martinez, who co-owns the restaurant with John Bates. “Wherever you grew up and regardless of what you put inside of it. We use this everyday comfort food as a catalyst to push the limits of what you can do.”

The Fried Bologna Sandwich ($7)

“This is an example of something my mom would make with that red ring bologna and cheese and it was just the best thing ever,” Martinez says. “Ours is more complicated, but the flavors take me back to my childhood. That’s the fun part of our job. We get to turn people on to things they’ve never tried before, but they still have that safety net that ultimately it’s a sandwich.”

White Bread: Noble Pig's Farmhouse White is enriched with butter and eggs, which creates a rich but light texture that holds up to the moisture that their hearty sandwiches deliver.

Olive Oil Pickles: To make the crunchy condiment, cucumbers and white onions are brined in red wine vinegar for five days, rinsed, then briefly boiled with olive oil, fennel seed, and other aromatics. “The oil softens the acidic punch, but still allows a bright flavor that cuts through the richness of our meats,” Martinez says.

Sweet Yellow Mustard: Bates and Martinez have been making mustard in-house since they opened. In addition to an assertive whole-grain version, they make a sweet yellow mustard that suggests French Dijon with a touch of sweetness.

Cheddar Cheese: Makes everything better.

Mortadella: Theirs follows a fairly traditional recipe that’s flavored with pistachios, nutmeg, and house-cured pork belly. “The meat is ground twice and emulsified while it’s cold to create a very fine, smooth texture,” Martinez explains.


Photography by Kate LeSueur

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