>> Attari Sandwich Shop | Eat the World Los Angeles

Friday, 28 December 2018

Attari Sandwich Shop


On a pleasant day, the small courtyard here at Attari is usually filled with area Persians chatting over tea and food underneath the ample shade. Inside the conversations seem to get even more spirited and important, but this may only be my brain working a little too hard to find intrigue. Either way, the feeling of being a central hub for a culture is here.

The first thing you notice when walking inside is the refrigerated case full of salads and meze and single portion takeaway containers of rice pudding. The menu goes much further though than these simple things, and the place is quite surprising in the depth of their kitchen offerings despite having "sandwich shop" in their title. Very popular also are the kebobs, seen on at least one table at every visit.

I enjoy starting out with the lovely ash-e reshteh (below), a stew of so many ingredients just called "osh" here on the menu. This is 100% vegetarian, but hearty with chickpeas, kidney beans, and small noodles. In fact the word "ash" in Farsi is a word to distinguish thick stews like this from thinner soups. The green color is a combination of mint, parsley, spinach, and dill, and there may have been lentils in here as well. A white drizzle of fermented dairy kashk and a black drizzle of mint oil create a work of art at the top and are covered with caramelized onions.

Unseen on the table are the small thin pieces of fresh bread and the plate of herbs that are automatically brought to the table. Both complement everything you can order here.

Don't forget about those sandwiches, all served on a nice crisp roll, especially the ones with Persian ingredients. The owner here has been selling sandwiches in some form since the end of the 80's, and they really are a treat. Many, like the tongue sandwich (below) are full of very tart pickles which could not make a better juxtaposition with the richness of the meats.

Make sure to come back on Fridays when they serve abgoosht, another stew of lamb, and the place is even more full of conversations and intrigue.


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