We wrote about Roberta’s new takeaway spot a little while ago, and writer Margaret Eby had such high praise for the croissant dough-based garlic knots that when we were near Roberta’s this afternoon, we decided to head on over and sample the garlic knots for ourselves. And we are so, so, so glad we did. Only it’s not because of the garlic knots.
Oh, the garlic knots were fine and everything. Ok, they weren’t just fine. They were great! Flaky and salty and, of course, sharply redolent of garlic, Roberta’s has vastly improved upon the gut bombs that are the garlic bombs of most corner slice joints. But a funny thing happened while we were ordering our 3 for $5 garlic knots: We saw a sign for a porchetta sandwich. Which, sure, that’s not so funny. It’s more like fateful. Because even though we weren’t that hungry, the promise of fennel pollen-dusted pork enticed us enough to tack on the sandwich to our order. (In an effort to be mildly health-conscious, we also ordered a green juice, which was made up of kale, cucumber, celery, and garlic. Reader, we won’t lie to you, this was one of the best green juices we’ve ever had. The garlic was imperceptible save for the way that it accentuated the sweet brightness of the vegetables.)
But anyway: melt-in-your-mouth roasted pork. Maybe it’s the fact that I ate this sandwich outside on what is proving to be one of the most beautiful days of the year. Maybe it’s the fact that the only other thing I’d eaten today was one garlic knot and some green juice. Or maybe it’s the fact that this porchetta sandwich—served on a house-made Portuguese roll that soaked up all the oily goodness while still retaining a firm, yet delicate crumbly texture—just happens to be one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever had. From the first bite, with the grease dripping all over my hands, I was in love. Part of the beauty of this porchetta is the variety of textures, the smooth, almost liquid fattiness; the sharp, crackling shards of skin; the flavorful, perfectly chewy meat; the sweet, woodsy herbs which, if you close your eyes, allow you to forget you’re in Bushwick and let you believe you’re on a hillside of Tuscany.
And then a truck blasts its horn ten feet from where you’re sitting and you wake the fuck up. But that’s ok. Because this sandwich wasn’t part of your Tuscan reverie. This sandwich is all Brooklyn. You might not be in Italy, but neither is Roberta’s. So, you know, get yourself over to Moore Street ASAP. The sandwich is technically off menu, and isn’t served every day, but it is being served today. And it is so, so good. Just remember to get extra napkins.
Roberta’s Takeaway: 261 Moore Street, Bushwick
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