In this great city of ours, one could eat a different sandwich every day of the year—so that's what we'll do. Here's A Sandwich a Day, our daily look at sandwiches around New York. Got a sandwich we should check out? Let us know. —The Mgmt.
It doesn't take much more than excellent bread, a few simple but high-quality ingredients, and a bit of thought to put together a world class sandwich. The Manaouri Cheese & Fig ($10.50) at The Smile—the NoHo tatoo-parlor/general store-cum-restaurant—has got all three.
The bread is toasted sourdough from Amy's, with a nice mild tang and a compact crumb that takes well to toasting—good structure, but not so tough or cracker-like that it presses on the soft fillings of the sandwich. Inside you'll find a thick slab of manaouri—a creamy, ricotta-like cheese made from the spent whey of Feta production—a cheese that Executive Chef Melia Marden gained a taste for during childhood vacations in Greece. It's got a distinct saltiness that goes well with the sweet smear of fig preserves it's paired with, along with a few leaves of arugula. I could take or leave the drizzle of truffle oil the sandwich is finished with, but it wasn't a deal-breaker. It's always surprisingly pleasurable when a few carefully chosen, humble ingredients can make for such seriously delicious food.