The ABC Pang is An Elusive Little Sammie
Three months after the Italian sausage fest that was the Batali Pang, one of our favorite sandwich shops, Num Pang, has launched the second in their series of specialty sandwiches called “Guest Chefs Give Back,” with proceeds going to a different charity (and I’m not talking about my stomach). The ABC Pang is a collaboration with Dan Kluger and Jean-Georges Vongerichten of ABC Kitchen. I’ve had two pretty amazing meals at that locavore, vegetable-friendly restaurant so I was so excited when the news of this sandwich was announced last week.
I was so excited in fact that I rushed over there on Friday afternoon only to discover that they had sold out by 12:30. There are limited quantities of the sandwich available each day so I made sure to come early yesterday to beat the crowds and taste this latest creation.
Like all the other sandwiches on the menu, the ABC Pang is stuffed inside their delicious toasted baguette with all the usual fix-in’s (fresh cilantro, pickled carrots, and large slices of cucumbers). It gets a little fancier with poached chicken salad tossed in a chili mayo, a spread of spicy cashew butter, and fried bits of chicken skin. There was an underlying rich sweetness to the sandwich from the cashew butter with some bright tanginess from the pickled vegetables and a healthy dose of lime. It would have been easy to mistake the salty, crunchy chicken skin for shards of bacon so that was a most welcome addition. And the inclusion of more fresh vegetables, like cherry tomatoes, chopped radishes, and jalapeños (minus the seeds and the heat) added to the freshness and kept it in the world of Chef Kluger. I’m afraid the chunky chicken salad itself got a little overwhelmed by the other ingredients.
With words like spicy, chili, and jalapeños in the description, I was expecting much more heat. The showcase of the sandwich seemed to be the fresh vegetables and the interesting addition of cashew butter. It was still pretty delicious and I finished it faster than you could say A-B-C. However at $9.25 before tax (it came to just over $10), it’s a bit pricey for a tasty, but not quite filling sandwich. It’s available now through July 12 and if you’re interested in trying it, I recommend getting there early.
Num Pang, 140 East 41st Street, (212) 867-8889