Earl’s Sandwiches, Ballston

(See the Feb 13, 2012 Minibite here.)

FWIW, I think the Angry Catfish Po’ Boy on the March specials list is a strong offering.

That Angry Catfish Po’ Boy was on the sandwich sign outdoors last night – it might only be running through Nov 30, so if you want it, I would recommend getting it soon.

My young dining companion came over last night  after being at college for three months . He was tired, hungry, frazzled from rush hour traffic, and needed something casual, quick, and good: Earl’s Sandwiches to the rescue.

We drove to the Ballston location, parked right in front, and only one group was in front of us, so the wait was negligible. The Tuesday-night special was a half-price Pork and Fries Sandwich with the purchase of any beer, so we essentially got two-for-one ($8.99), and I unselfishly rescued Matt from drinking alcohol by taking his beer, a bottle of Allagash White ($5.99, ouch) which, quite honestly, I was pleasantly surprised with – it has good flavor, and didn’t come across as a mass-produced product at all – Allagash used to be a microbrew (and still may be, technically), but it’s a definitely a mass-produced product at this point; the beer was perfectly fine, and I’d order it again if I saw it.

The Pork and Fries Sandwich was served Primanti Bros.-style in that the fries were inside the sandwich. I don’t care much for this type of pile-on, as it’s usually just too much glop, especially with the other ingredients: roasted pork loin, chipotle mayonnaise, french fries, roasted red peppers, sweet pickle chips, and chopped onions on a large, sub-style grilled ciabatta roll.

Well, although this wasn’t a “dainty” sandwich, it managed to carry its weight deftly, and with some finesse – at no time did I feel like I was eating a grease-bomb. But that’s Earl’s Sandwiches, coming to the rescue – if this place was in downtown DC, it would be twice as popular as it is, and despite the openings of some worthy competitors, Earl’s is still is at-or-near the top of the area’s sandwich shops.

More importantly, I got a clarinet concert when I got home.

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