Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Street Eats: Ali’s Egyptian Sandwiches in Itaewon

Itaewon Egyptian Sandwiches
Written and Photographed by Troy Zitzelberger

Nestled in the heart of Itaewon, right outside of Spy Club, this is possibly the only food cart in all of Seoul with Egyptian food on the menu. After one of my late nights, having already consumed a burger earlier in the day, I decided to try something new. And as luck would have it, I stumbled upon a late night eatery that I had never seen before. I approached the counter interested in what exactly an “Egyptian Sandwich” consisted of. It turns out that it’s pretty much a doner on a roll. There was chicken, beef, vegetable and lamb to please my heart’s desire.

Sitting behind the grill was a very humble and friendly Egyptian man, Ali. The smile on his face may have been attributed to the fact that he was busy; all the seats were taken. I ordered the Egyptian lamb and sandwich and I was happy to see it came fully loaded. The meat was piled high and mixed with onions and mushrooms while the roll was lathered with a garlic hummus (which was awesome) and hot sauce. It was tender, juicy, and all in all quite delightful. The combination of ingredients each contributed different flavors and textures that made each bite much better than the last- well, until the last bite, at that point I was quite sad. Also, the fluffy roll was the perfect delivery method for the ingredients: it nicely soaked up the juices so the sandwich was almost a French dip. It was delicious a perfect late night snack. I have to give props to my new Egyptian friend, Ali. 
was certainly a good one, thank you Ali.

Ali’s Egyptian Sandwiches is located directly in front of Spy Bar in Itaewon. You can take the subway line 6 and get off at the Itaewon stop. Take exit two and walk straight. He is usually parked there but who knows he could have moved. He is usually out Friday and Saturday Night. 

Troy Zitzelsberger originally hails from Michigan but has lived in Chicago, New York City, Germany, and now Seoul. He is working as an actor (really, no joke) in Korea and he humbly calls himself, "an unofficial food critic." You can find out more about Troy here.