Although DC is several jet-fueled hours away from Uruguay, thanks to the culinary geniuses at Fast Gourmet, the word "Chivito" has become a part of our local lexicon.Although DC is several jet-fueled hours away from Uruguay, thanks to the culinary geniuses at Fast Gourmet, the word "Chivito" has become a part of our local lexicon. Lovers of sandwiches-too-big-for-a-one-person will know why this Uruguayan national dish made Washington City Paper's 2012 Best Of DC as soon as they see it. And as good as it looks, it tastes even better, packed to its soft-bread gills with beef tenderloin, mozzarella, Black Forest ham, bacon, green olives, an egg, a house-made escabeche, lettuce, tomato, onion and mayo. Phew, that's as jam-packed a sentence as it is a sandwich. While this sandwich is a must-try, as is the other signature here, the Cubano, which features an in-house slow-roasted pork butt that's marinated for 24 hours, my personal favorite is the tuna sandwich. Just like everything at this gourmet eatery, which just so happens to be housed in a gas station (don't worry, it's cool), everything is done the right way. "We use whole filets of tuna and not tuna from a can," said Lina Chovil, who owns Fast Gourmet with her husband. The rest of the ingredients are equally as fresh and everything is always made-to-order. Which is why if you order the beer-battered eggplant (another must-try item), be prepared to let them cool off a minute before digging in. Don't worry, though, if you're like me, you'll use that time to plan what you'll try upon your next visit. Perhaps the Pascualina spinach pie with red peppers or maybe the new fish tacos or churrasco sandwich? Or maybe I'll keep it simple and go with all of the above.
Beer-battered eggplant, $4
Deal Hours: Sunday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Monday - Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Thursday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.