I stopped by the newly opened Red Star Sandwich Shop a couple of weeks ago to try out their lone vegetarian sandwich — the Beer-Battered Eggplant. Although it was a busy lunch service, my sandwich came out extremely fast. Way too fast to have been fried to order, which I took as a bad sign. Sure enough, the eggplant was room temperature. I was disappointed, but kept eating. Once I got past the temperature, however, I started to appreciate how good it was. There was a great balance of ingredients, and the sandwich was constructed in an interesting way: bottom bun, shiitake mushrooms, eggplant, pickled vegetables, tofu mayo, top bun. Separating the shiitakes from the pickled veggies kept the flavors distinct, and the tofu mayo helped lubricate the whole thing. Even better were the P’tater Tots (silly name notwithstanding). Crispy on the outside but creamy on the inside, these were appropriately hot and delicious. Now that I’ve eaten the sandwich I don’t feel any pressing need to return, but they are open until 10pm Monday through Saturday, so some late-night tots may be in order one of these days.
Red Star Sandwich Shop — 176 Smith St