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Sandwich Fight!

Where to find the best sandwich in Seattle? Disregarding a few outliers, the argument comes down to two neighborhoods.

PIONEER SQUARE

SALUMI Everything made in-house—from traditional spicy coppa and delicate culatello to evolutionary fare like mole salami—bursts with rustic flavor. Warm, familial ambiance, but first you must endure the 45-minute wait behind a busload of tourists. 8.2 pickles

TAT’S Opened by a former Philly Phish head, Tat’s offers a real-deal cheesesteak experience, along with a dozen different forearm-size hoagies, hot subs and homemade soups. Its secret weapon is the Tat’strami, a cheesesteak made with house-smoked pastrami and melted Swiss. 7.7 pickles

DELICATUS From street-level counter to upstairs mezzanine, this sun-lit, wood-hewn shrine to the sandwich is impeccable. Seattle’s most serious bid at a Northwest sandwich standard, Delicatus counters old-school faves with new-school combos. 9 pickles

FREMONT

PASEO Paseo’s Cuban-style roast pork sandwich is a sublime swirl of charred flesh, pickled jalapeños, caramelized onions, garlicky mayonnaise, and Latino swagger. It’s the best sandwich in Seattle—if you can get it. Every time I show up the place is closed or out of bread. 8.8 pickles

HOMEGROWN Organic, earnest and eager to please, Homegrown was started in Fremont by a guy named Large Rob. They do everything right—even the potato chips are made in-house—but don’t do enough of it for the prices they charge. 7.2 pickles

BAGUETTE BOX The crispy-hot Drunken Chicken or Niçoise-style tuna sandwiches, both built ostensibly from the less-is-more Banh mi blueprint, are always good. For a place named after an ingredient, however, the Box uses difficult baguettes. 7.1 pickles

DOT’S DELI This urbane, rootsy upstart opened in August. The house-made pastrami—redolent of wood smoke—and thin-sliced caraway rye add up to a worthy Reuben. The owner couple behind the counter is off to an auspicious start. 7.4 pickles

AVERAGE SCORE
Pioneer Square: 8.3
Fremont: 7.6
The Winner! Pioneer Square

Illustration by Tom Dougherty

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