Wookiee Hut Cuisine presents:
Sam LaGrassa's
44 Province St. Boston, MA 02108

Review by SuSu, Wraith6, Diasala

New York believes itself to be the deli sandwich capital of the world, but in fact, though there may be lots of delis to help it claim that title, there are excellent sandwich places everywhere. In Boston, wedged between many a Dunkin Donuts (we have counted a density up to three per city block), there is the Portuguese sounding Sam Lagassa's which is known for it's pastrami and corned beef. they have a short menu of sandwiches, the major variation being whether it is toasted / grilled pannini style, and whether you have Cole slaw in the sandwich or not. Sandwiches average about $9 and for about $4 more, you can make it a platter and get creamy on the inside, crunchy on the outside French fries, excellent half-sour dill pickle spears, and a peppery cole slaw.

The major difference in the pastrami is a sweetness versus spiciness factor. Sam Lagassa's is the latter and the meat is more consistently lean, yet not dry. New York's pastrami tends to be heavier on the spices, onion and garlic flavoring, and salt. Sam's tends to add Russian dressing and Cole slaw inside their sandwiches, which come dressed, while a NYC sandwich tends to come unadorned, and is normally accompanied only by mustard or horseradish cream as condiments.

This place is a cafeteria line, and you have to jockey for a seat in the long common table or a number of smaller tables lining the windowed wall. The line is long, so it's helpful if one of you scopes out and stakes claims on your seats, while the other goes through the line. Be sure you know what you want by the time you get to the counterman — though Bostonians are less pushy and open about their anger, they might feel upset if you dilly dally and get in the way of their sandwich order.

People eating here tended to be suited men or tourists, with a few university students mingled in. There are very few women, and it would be an entertaining date place if you felt like assessing your date's tolerance for this style of environment versus the promise of really excellent sandwich and fries. If it's important to you, it's best to knows early on.

We had a jumbo Reuben and a combo, which contains both corned beef and pastrami. The Reuben was toasted and so, took a few minutes longer. They didn't hear me asking for the platter for either, but as the order moved down the line, they were happy to "make it a platter" before it got to the cash register. Sodas and canned teas and water are available, but no refills.

Finally, we are unsure why some people got real silverware, but others had to go get it from the cashier, who looked annoyed at having to reach back to get you a plastic fork. Go figure, but why be annoyed that I wanted to eat my Cole slaw not with my fingers?

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