Finally, a dinner event that puts the noble crisp sandwich front and centre.
There is, naturally, a certain finesse to creating the crisp sandwich. One cannot simply dump the packet in and eat, for myriad concerns must be taken into consideration – white or brown bread? Does one sauce a crisp sandwich? And do is compressing the sarnie so that the crisps become crushed, and therefore more manageable, canon or catastrophe? It’s a minefield, but one which Hackney Wick’s Beer Merchants Tap have navigated, ahead of their crisp sandwich pop-up this weekend.
Oh yes, London’s pop-up scene has reached this final, hitherto unimagined frontier. A lawless place upon which order must be imposed, elevating the crisp sandwich to its rightful place in the pantheon of snack food staples – although frankly, I can’t help but wonder why Hipchips didn’t think of it first. For an upcoming tap takeover with Scottish brewers Pilot Beer, Beer Merchants Tap chucked out the now-passé carefully curated bar snacks, and opted instead for an evening of “great beer and gourmet sandwiches”.
The classic white bread and Walkers scenario has also been dumped, for these are some fancy looking sarnies, all blessed with an appropriately fun name. Witness The Intergalactic Fantastic, which sees pickled onion Space Raiders nestled on sourdough, and jazzed up with mild cheddar and Dijon mustard. Meanwhile, The Cheesy Chowdown heroes Cheetos, smothered in chilli jam and covered in rocket, and The Captain Ahab adds a seafood flavour through scampi & lemon NikNaks and tartare sauce.
There’s even a dessert option, dubbed The Mocha-Chocolato-Yaya – it features dried banana slices (“which are definitely a kind of crisp”, the menu argues) topped with chocolate spread and served on a buttered malt loaf. Honestly, the whole menu brings me so much joy.
Each crisp sandwich will be paired with a different Pilot beer, and crisp aficionados can opt for a full tasting menu, featuring a sample of all six sandwiches and all six beers. The pop-up runs from Thursday, August 8th until Sunday August 11th – or until they run out of sandwiches, which I predict will happen first. It’s a whimsical, joyous riff on the “pint of lager and a packet of crisps” formula, and I for one hope it catches on!
Find out more from the Facebook event.
Also published on Medium.