It’s the sort of tongue-in-cheek California thing you might see parodied on SNL, but this one is very, very real: a local Los Angeles lunch shop plans on offering a sandwich menu entirely named after NPR hosts.
The upcoming spot, called Wax Paper Co., is exactly as pedigreed as you’d expect: co-owner Peter Lemos was previously the chef de cuisine at Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo’s aptly-named hit restaurant Jon & Vinny’s before deciding to go the casual lunch route with his wife/partner Lauren Behrle, and they’re planning to open up shop inside a reformatted shipping container in the quickly-changing Frog Town neighborhood along the L.A. River.
What’s the inspiration for naming their new menu after NPR notables like Ira Glass and Lakshmi Singh? "We just came up with the idea in the car one day, while listening to our daily dose of NPR," says Behrle, adding with a laugh: "Since then, we’ve been pretty passionate about it staying in place."
So what does a Larry Mantle (of AirTalk) sandwich actually consist of? In his case, the $12 option comes with hand-sliced bologna on a sesame roll, with capicola, provolone, pickled peppers, red onion, lettuce, tomato and oregano vinaigrette. As for the Kai Ryssdal (of Marketplace), expect pole-caught tuna, potato confit, celery, lettuce, and black olive aioli.
Lemos and Behrle say that their menu will change with the season and rotate out as they see fit, but expect the NPR appropriation to continue on. After all, there’s always someone on the air over there that’s worthy of a little good-natured sandwich parody.