Do we know it’s Christmas time at all? Yes, yes we do. Because sprout-stuffed and cranberry-loaded sandwiches have started festively popping up in restaurants across London. Of course none of them will ever, truly, top the greedy beauty of your own late night Boxing Day creation. A gravity-defying specimen that’s just as likely to have three types of stuffing in it as it is a rogue, cranberry-bathed roastie. That said, these Christmas sandwiches have got some things you’d probably never have at home.
Big Jo Bakery
Debates over the best bread for a behemoth leftovers sandwich usually sees the likes of the French stick and sourdough relegated due to all that achy OTT chewing action. So, after last year’s baguette-based offering, your jaws will be happy to hear that Big Jo has opted for a ciabatta vehicle this year. It’s filled with thin-sliced roast turkey, pickled red cabbage, stuffing, bread sauce mayo and cranberry as well. Perfectly paired with a slice of their chocolate Guinness cake.
Quality Chop House
Less a sandwich and more a living, heaving, gravy-mayonnaise-covered example of festive perfection, the QCH shop Christmas sandwich is a holy thing worth journeying for. Every bite contains precisely what your taste buds should be pining for at this time of year—moist turkey breast and stuffed leg meat, crispy bacon, cranberry sauce, and gravy mayo. The light brioche bun makes it 100% inhaleable and, frankly, one may not be enough.
It’s one of our Best New Restaurants of 2021 and it’s also got one of the best new Christmas sandwiches out there. The Belgravia bakery is doing something decidedly gooey and luxurious with its turkey, cranberry and brie toastie. Straight from the mind of a precocious child on Boxing Day morning, it pairs hot and cold, meat and cheese, British and French classics, and has a complete disregard for vegetables.
We always have high expectations for Snackbar’s sandwiches and that only increases come Christmas time. The Dalston café hasn’t disappointed with its Monte Cristo sandwich this year, a creation that’s inspired by Disneyland and, before you get excited, no, it’s not a giant turkey leg stuck between two slices. It’s a take on the croque monsieur, featuring slices of black treacle-glazed ham, ogleshield cheese, cranberry sauce and mustard mayo, all between two slices of brioche bread. Oh, and one last thing: it’s dipped in an egg batter and fried like French toast before being finished with a dusting of icing sugar.
Fink's Salt And Sweet
VE/VG option available
Though Fink’s remains takeaway-only, they’re still making their excellent focaccia and potato sourdough sandwiches. Their festive offerings are layered between the latter, with classic combos of roasted turkey breast, chestnut stuffing, plus mayonnaise and shredded sprouts. The vegetarian option swaps the turkey for extra stuffing and a generous pile of crunchy sprout salad.
VE/VG option available
The Crouch End bakery is a favourite amongst locals and their classic Christmas sandwich, crammed with pigs and blankets and all, is only likely to expand their fandom further. Their approach is one that everyone can get behind because it is, for all intents and purposes, a full Christmas dinner scraped from a plate onto a slice of thick-cut white sourdough. There’s turkey and sprouts, carrots and parsnips, pigs in blankets and stuffing, plus cranberry sauce and gravy.
VE/VG option available
Last year we described Dom’s as a ‘Christmas sandwich disruptor’ and their midnight-fridge-rummage approach to putting things in bread continues to deliver the goods. Their Christmas offering is a triple threat. Firstly, there’s a classic turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce and mayo number. Then, for the less meat-inclined, there’s a combination of sweet and sour roasted parsnips, shredded sprout salad, XO sauce, and crispy noodle. Or, if you’re really looking for a sandwich that makes you hold your hands in messy desperation as you try to manifest a napkin, then go for their pork shoulder, pecan mole, cranberry hot sauce, and pickled red cabbage mega-mix.
It is, perhaps, a little untrue to describe Blacklock’s creation as a sandwich. But then again, fried chicken in a burger bun is a sandwich so this can be as well. Generous is an understatement when it comes to this thing: there’s grilled turkey thigh and a sausage patty, homemade cranberry ketchup along with walnuts and a brussels sprouts slaw. It’s the type of sandwich you simply have to surrender to.