Star Stream's Pork Conserva Sandwich

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

No secret that Remi Hayashi is one of our favorite sweets bakers. Turns out she's also a sandwich maker with the kind of rococo imagination that's all too rare in this town, where ― surprise, surprise ― fillings with the sober contours of porchetta trump frillier flights of fancy. A taste of Star Stream's pork conserva sandwich ($7.50) last week showed us what we've been missing. Shreds of long-cooked pork, every bit as squishy and molar-packing as canned tuna, were actually the least impressive thing about it. The heart of the thing turned out to be a fennel salad punked with fat suprêmes of orange-y grapefruit. It would have been more than fine left like that, only Hayashi added a sprinkling of crunchy-sweet candied fennel seeds, as brash, in its way, as marking up an Alice Waters cookbook with a Day-Glo highlighter. If that all sounds like a sandwich with an unctuousness deficit, consider that the house-baked roll was slathered, not with mayo, but with butter. Who else but a pastry chef would see the virtue of that?

Star Stream: 1830 Harrison (at 14th St.), 317-3013.

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