Endless Road Trip Seattle: Porky Passion at Paseo
The best sandwich in Seattle is not exactly the most photogenic one, but trust me, with flavors and textures his heavenly, it doesn’t matter one bit. Welcome to one of my most favorite things I’ve ever put into my mouth: the Caribbean Roast sandwich at Paseo, a little cash-only sandwich shack on the beach.
Originally located on the side of a busy road in Seattle’s Fremont neighborhood, Paseo has been such a longstanding favorite with locals that they were able to open a second location outside Golden Gardens, a beautiful seaside park in Ballard. You walk up to a window in the little building, place your sandwich order (feel free to add on rice and beans or their amazing corn on the cob), pay with about $8 cash, then chill on a wooden bench enjoying the lovely sea air while waiting for your paper-wrapped, sloppy, meaty masterpiece to arrive.
The star of the Caribbean Roast is its pork shoulder, which is soaked in Paseo’s special tangy marinade and slow-roasted until it is melt-in-your mouth tender. Huge hunks of said pork are nestled in freshly-baked local Macrina Bakery bread slathered with garlicky aioli, alongside crisp lettuce, cilantro, pickled jalapeños, and – my personal favorite – thick rings of sweet, roasted onions.
Seattle is passionate about Paseo—so passionate that the shop often runs out of bread halfway through the day! I told my Texan boyfriend, who was visiting with me, that any time you mention to a Seattleite that you had Paseo for lunch, they jealously exclaim “Aannuuugghhh! Paseo!”.He laughed, thinking I was joking. By the end of that night, everyone we mentioned our Paseo trip to indeed muttered envious, guttural noises. I guess people just can’t help their reaction once they’ve experienced the Caribbean Roast, the true coup de grâce of the sandwich world.
Paseo Ballard / 6226 Seaview Ave. NW / 11am-9pm Tues-Sat
Paseo Fremont / 4225 Fremont Ave. N / 11am-9pm Tues-Fri / 11am-8pm Sat