Tuesday, September 6, 2016
LA (and Maybe the World's) Best Pastrami: Ugly Drum at Smorgasburg
If you haven't been to Smorgasburg, you need to make a beeline there on your next free Sunday. Smorgasburg is a food fair that originated in Brookly and opened in LA in June. It includes around 50 vendors; some are connected to food trucks or stores, but many are only available at Smorgasburg.
The festival is a food lover's dream with vendors selling a wide range of great food from Summer Crab Company's fried soft shelled crab sandwiches to pork belly paratha tacos from Goa Taco to Wanderlust's fantastic ube ice cream.
But the best thing I've had so far in the entire place is Ugly Drum's pastrami. They serve one thing. Pastrami on rye with a squirt of mustard if you want it. This pastrami is amazing. The flavor is as rich as any I've had, but the texture is more akin to fat marbled, barbecued brisket; it has that melt-in-your mouth quality. This is the best pastrami I've ever had, better than Langer's, better than Katz's. Go eat it!
Smorgasburg takes place downtown at the Alameda Produce Market on Sundays from 10 to 5. It's shockingly uncrowded, and there is plentiful parking at the lot at Alameda and Bay Streets that is free for the first two hours.