photo credit: Peden+Munk

10 LA Spots That Made Molly Baz A Sandwich Person image


10 LA Spots That Made Molly Baz A Sandwich Person

Getting to know her new city, one bite at a time.

Molly Baz wasn't a sandwich person before moving to LA. But after migrating west from NYC in 2020 with her husband and pet weenie, Tuna, the cookbook author and video star started making a lot of them at home. Then, once restaurants reopened, she found herself seeking sandwiches all over LA: "It was the easy way for me to get to know the food culture here," she says. That led to an appreciation for all sandwich styles, configurations, and bread-to-filling ratios. In other words, now she's a sandwich person. So much so that an entire chapter of her new book, More Is More is dedicated to them. 

Molly's definition of a sandwich is pretty flexible and that's perfectly fine by us. Here are the bánh mì, bagels, and Italian subs that define her LA experience (so far).



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The #19

"The #19 is a sandwich that defies what I think I like about sandwiches. Walking into Langer's, I would have expected the reuben to be my favorite, but it's actually this pastrami sandwich. I would never order a sandwich with a slice of swiss that's not melted, but the cold cheese is what makes that sandwich so weird and perfect. My husband is obsessed with Jewish delis, so this is a sandwich that I've probably had 20 times since moving here, which is a lot of times since I've only been here for three years. It's such an iconic restaurant."

photo credit: Zhengyalov Hatz

Zhengyalov Hatz

"I don't know if other people would consider this a sandwich, but as long as it's got bread on both sides, I think that it can be categorized as such. This Armenian flatbread is stuffed with a sh*t ton of herbs and greens. There's a lot of dill in there. (It's basically a dill sandwich.) Normally I take it home and slather it in toum and sriracha to make it a bit more garlicky and spicy. I don't think they would get mad about that—they don't have any condiments, and I'm a big condiment person. This place is so special, and I love a spot that will focus on doing only one thing and doing it really well."

Tuna Melt

"This tuna melt is not on The Apple Pan's menu, so you have to ask for cheese on their regular tuna sandwich. The regular is good, too, but the tuna melt is the more iconic sando. It's a very simple tuna salad that has a sweet pickle relish in it, which, for me, leans too sweet. But when paired with cheese and bread griddled in butter, it all balances out. I can't remember if they use sourdough or rye, but I'm a tuna-on-rye gal." 


"Many people rave about the Italian at Bub and Grandma's, but I prefer muffuletta. It also comes with provolone and a trifecta of mortadella, salami, and ham, but its olive salad is a very special condiment with the cured meats. And what I especially love about this sandwich is how fluffy and yielding the bread is. This muffuletta is so tidy, nothing slips out, and you get everything in each bite." 

Larry Mantle

"If I'm craving an Italian sandwich, I go to Wax Paper for the Larry Mantle. I'm a mortadella freak, and this sandwich comes with fancy herb bologna (so basically mortadella). There's spicy aioli and a ton of shredduce, which I love. It's fatty, it's spicy, it has lots of pickle-y things, and it's on a sesame roll. I'm also a sesame freak, so if it's on a sesame roll, I'm listening." 

Brisket bánh mì

"Gjusta's bánh mì starts with their delicious house-made baguette. It's not as soft, shattery, and crusty as a classic Vietnamese bánh mì. I'm a bit of a baguette purist and usually want a French baguette roll, but this one I'll take. This sandwich is all about the incredible pantry goods and condiments Gjusta sells, like their aioli and house pickles. And all of these delicious condiments get thrown on really nice smoked meat." 

Bánh mì

"Bánh Mì My Tho is a sandwich shop in Alhambra that does a bunch of different Vietnamese sandwiches, but the grilled pork bánh mì is my favorite. Whatever the marinade is on the grilled pork tastes sweet and lemongrass-y. I like a grilled meat banh mi more than a cold cut banh mi because the condiments complement a fatty grilled piece of meat. It's pretty classic, with the pickled onions, pickled carrots, and cilantro (I'm a big cilantro fan)." 

The Veggie Sandwich

"Kismet's pita bread is amazing (a bakery makes it for them, but they won't reveal where they get it from). It's so fluffy. I'm normally not a vegetable sandwich person, but Sarah and Sara [of Kismet] are so talented with vegetables. This veggie sandwich is light but still filling and comes with pickled onions, a jammy egg, and lots of herbs." 

Run It Through The Garden

"I've lived in NY, had many bagels there, and Courage is my favorite bagel. I don't like a doughy bagel at all, I like a crispy crackly. And because I'm a sesame person and a burnt end person, I get their Run It Through The Garden on a burnt sesame. There's dill, there's heirloom tomatoes, there's capers, there's cucumbers, there's red onion. It's a light bagel that doesn't create that panade in your mouth." 

Big Mouth Pocket

"This might not be the most typical of sandwiches in the world, but I'm going to categorize it as a sandwich because it has some kind of bread on two sides, stuffed with something meaty and fresh. It comes with either ground pork or chopped beef that's mixed with scallion and cilantro wrapped into this warm, flaky, sesame pastry dough. It's something between a wrap and a hot pocket, except way more delicious. The beef comes cold and sliced, and there's a nice balance of fatty meat and fresh herbs."

Suggested Reading

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The Best Sandwich Shops In LA

From iconic bánh mì spots to family-run Jewish delis, these are the top 21 places that specialize in subs, hoagies, heroes, and more.

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The Queer Eye star gives his seal of approval to these spots.

15 Of The Best Sandwiches In America image

So many wonderful things can happen between two slices of bread.

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