(First time contributer NC checks in from the outer reaches of Brooklyn)
Roll-n-Roaster is a fast food roast beef restaurant in “the butt-end of Brooklyn.” As you might expect, the butt is full of Russians, Italians, and the formidable Italian-Russian mafia. It sits on Emmons Avenue across from Sheepshead Bay. There are boats that people party on. There is a Yacht Club, strange Russian-Turkish-Italian-Polish dance clubs and bars with unpronounceable names, seafood restaurants that look delicious, and hoodlums with crooked heads standing on the corner who talk shit to you when you walk past.
It also features a damn good roast beast sandwich.
Arby’s, Rax, Hardee’s, Carl’s Jr. and Lion’s Choice are the major players in the Country-Wide Fast-Food Roast Beef Wars. Arby’s has Beef n’ Cheddars, Horsey sauce, and 5 Regulars for $5.55. Lion’s Choice has au jus pumps near the ketchup and napkins but only about 3 known locations. Hardee’s has The Giant. Rax has…um, anyone?
Unlike the thin processed meat feel of Arby’s or Hardee’s, R-n-R goes for the thicker cut and the real feel. I started with a plain sandwich. It is rare to medium rare and seeping blood. I wouldn’t say that it is piled high, but the beef-to-bun ratio is satisfying without being gross like a Katz’s sandwich. The Kaiser bun is crispy enough on the outside to hold together even though its innards are soaked. Every bun is once dipped in their gravy and you can get a double dip for free. Plus, the bun has sesame seeds, which I have a preference for.
While R-n-R does not have cheddar, they do have “cheez” which outperforms cheese by every known statistical measure and can be “added to anything you pleez.” For my encore, I added the cheez to the beef sandwich:
And that, when eaten with our sides of corn fritters, cheez fries, onion rings, was, no surprises, the jam. The corn fritters were especially good, and were washed down with fresh-made sweet iced tea.
The Invasion. Which naturally leads us left to contemplate why R-n-R did not work in Manhattan.?
Who knows, maybe the Arby’s-Rax-Hardee’s-LC mafia is stronger than we all thought.