Hi. It’s me. I’ve been vaccinated.
I got the J&J 1-shot vaccine way back in March, but then I had to wait-out the immunization-building period, which took longer that I thought it would, more like three weeks than two, so it was a little bit torturous waiting to reach maximum immunity, but it finally happened on April 9th, 2021, and I’m free. FREE! Free.
Almost 40 years ago, I had my jaw wired shut for 6 weeks, and when it was finally un-wired, the first thing I did was go to a place in Boston called Brigham’s, because all I wanted in this whole world at that time was a fucking sandwich.
That six weeks, now forty years past, was nothing compared to the 12 fucking months that we just spent waiting-out this fucking pandemic. Holy shit sticks, y’all. What the fuck? 2020 was the biggest, longest, shittiest shit show in the history of shit. I hated it.
On April 9th the waiting was over for me, and good lord, sweet Jesus, FUCK ALL Y’ALL, I’m invincible now, and I want a fucking sandwich.
So I hot footed it on down to Twisted Laurel Downtown Asheville, my Restaurant of the Year winner for 2020, and boy howdy! Am I glad I did. I chose wisely.
I ordered the Bodega Chop Cheese hoagy, which is something I had actually been trying to replicate at home, with some success, but not like Tommy. Chef Tom, that is, Tom LaFauci. He is my friend and one of my favorite chefs in this town. I saw him for the first time in over a year, which was great, and he made me a killer sandwich, which was REALLY GREAT! Gah. So tasty.
Just in case you don’t know, a “chopped cheese” is basically a chopped-up hamburger patty, cooked on the flat grille with onions and peppers, and served on a hoagy with American cheese and ketchup. It’s like, if you really want a cheeseburger, but you also really want a cheesesteak, what you actually really want is a chopped cheese.
Chef Tom makes his spicy, verging on hot, so be forewarned if you’re a baby about spicy things. The bread was soft, and leghtly toasted, the flavor and grille on the meat and peppers was perfect, with charred parts, and caramelized bits. And I am proud to be an American cheese lover. Always have been, always will be. And as long as I’m being 5 years old about it, I love ketchup too.
This wonderful sandwich hit every nail on the head for me, and was the best thing ever, right when I wanted it most. I recommend this sandwich very much, and yes, Chef Tom also has a cheeseburger and a cheesesteak on the menu, so I’ll be going back very soon.
I’m so fucking relieved to be vaccinated. I hope that you have been, or will be soon too, because I can’t tell you how great it feels to be back! Come be back with me!
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