Home TravelEngland Salt Beef Sandwich @ Selfridges, London

“Jie…let’s go for salt beef sandwich,” my brother said when we were walking along Oxford Street.

“What’s that?” I asked.

“You mean you’ve never tried salt beef sandwich before? I thought you said you go to London often!” my brother mocked.

“Oh shuttup you. Before I tell Daddy you don’t deserve a new Blackberry.”

See…my dad likes to tease us about our spending habits. He calls me a miser, and my brother, a money spender. I would need to think twice before spending £10.50 on a sandwich, but my brother would just get it. That was why, I’ve never tried the salt beef sandwich. Never knew it existed. *shy*

“Don’t angry la…I take you go eat.”

My brother has a way of pushing my buttons, but he also knows how to coax me. We went to The Brass Rail at the ground floor of Selfridges, reputed to serve good salt beef sandwiches.

I was so tempted to get the cupcakes…

Since it was in between lunch and dinner time, we shared a large sandwich (£10.50). A little history I found on Google, about the salt beef sandwich. Salt beef is known as picked beef in northern England. It is a Jewish deli meat made from beef brisket cured in brine. The salt preserves the meat and kills bacteria, and breaks down the tough brisket meat. What you get is meat that requires almost no chewing, melting in the mouth and flooding it with flavour. Trimming and hand-slicing methods makes a lot of difference — so the tastiness of the beef also depends on the skills of the carver.We queued up like school kids, holding trays and watched as the beef carver slice the salted beef before smearing the slices with mustard and wedging them between two slices of rye bread. The sandwich was weighed to check if it is the right amount, which I thought wasn’t accurate (I’ll get to that later).

“Would you like a gherkin with your sandwich?” my carver asked. It cost an extra 65p — I love gherkins, so I got one.

Pile it higher please. I’m a huge eater, I really am!

Back to the weight of the sandwich. A lady before us ordered the same large sandwich. She was a lot bigger than my brother and I were, and I noticed that her sandwich was piled high. I got a ‘tall’ sandwich, but what I really wanted was a ‘massive’ stack like the lady’s. So I concluded that based on your body size, you either get a salt beef sandwich fit for a king, or for an emperor.

My ‘king size’ sandwich

Excited. :)

The beef fell apart and crumbled in the mouth. Truth be told, I expected the meat to be more beefy. It had a rather mild flavour, but nonetheless, delicious. I asked for English mustard, which gave the beef a bit more kick with its tingling, nose burning sensation.

My brother…who doesn’t get why I need to photograph everything I eat. +_+

I ignored him…and still posed with my sandwich!

The thinly sliced rye bread was soft and generously scattered with caraway seeds. It held the beef slices together just fine. I enjoyed every mouthful. In total, the sandwich cost £11.15, making it the most expensive sandwich I have ever eaten in both the UK and Malaysia.

Ambiance: 6.5.10
Price: 3/10
Food: 7.5/10
Verdict: The sandwich was pretty good, but quite pricey, don’t you think?

The Brass Rail,
400 Oxford St,
London, W1A 1AB

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