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Best Sandwiches

sommelier_p Photograph courtesy flickr/FotoosVanRobin

The fabled lobster rolls of Maine are traditionally wrapped in waxed paper or set on Styrofoam plates. But at the lobby lounge in the Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey , four dainty triangles of grilled pain de mie are piled with fresh crustacean meat that’s been enhanced with a veneer of melted Brie. Basil, tomato, and an ocean view provide the accents.

A staple at street stands, choripan (slang for “chorizo with bread”) is Argentina’s ultimate snack. In L.A. the place to get one is Mercado Buenos Aires, where the sausages are freshly made and unadulterated by mayo or tomatoes. Grilled to a turn, the garlicky links ooze just enough grease to enrich the herb-filled chimichurrisplashed on the crispy roll. » 7542 Sepulveda Blvd., Van Nuys, 818-786-0522 or 818-786-0527.

The Italo-Brazilian Braziribs sandwich at Tropicalia rates high as one of L.A.’s most intemperate edibles. On a foundation of crunchy-crusted bread from Bauducco’s (a popular Westlake Village bakery) sits a tower of rich, fall-apart-tender short ribs, the result of a three-hour braising in a chile-infused broth. A generous slice of provolone gilds this hefty lily. 

Saucy meatballs, regional salamis, and exotic hams make ordering a sandwich at Mario’s Italian deli & Market a challenge. But it’s the warm lamb sub that gets extra stars. Slowly roasted leg meat layered in a warm Italian roll is drizzled with garlic and rosemary scented pan jus, slathered with the house “secret sauce,” and topped with thin, molten slices of mozzarella.