We love sandwiches, like, a lot. We especially love katsu sandwiches, which are as delicious as they are photogenic. And lucky for you, there are tons of excellent places to get one in SF. Here are six great katsu sandwiches to try right now.
We’d keep a miniature statue of Cafe Okawari’s katsu sandwich on our nightstand if we could—it’s that good. Cafe Okawari’s version stars a chicken thigh that’s fried to golden brown perfection, and then sandwiched between slices of white bread. Every element of the sandwich—from the crispy, juicy chicken to the tonkatsu sauce and mayo—is absolutely flawless. Grab a side salad or matcha latte to go with it.
Volcano Curry in the Richmond makes some of the best chicken katsu curry in the city. So, no surprise here, their katsu sandwiches impress us, too. The important thing to note is that these sandwiches are massive. Two evenly breaded and fried chicken cutlets are stacked on top of each other, and then a ton of coleslaw and a slightly-sweet sauce are layered on top. You will need two hands to eat this. Things will get messy. But when a sandwich is this fantastic, there are no complaints.
Torraku Ramen used to be a ramen-only food truck, but now they’ve got a brick-and-mortar spot in Potrero Hill serving everything from donburi bowls to yakisoba. They also have a katsu sandwich that’s all-around excellent, and we especially love it because of the spicy mayo. The sandwich also comes with a side of dressing and cabbage salad, which you’ll want to stuff inside the sandwich yourself for a necessary crunch.
Bread N’ Chu
If you’re in the Outer Richmond, and in need of a perfectly-square katsu sandwich right now, head to Bread N’ Chu. The sandwich shop makes a really good one with a thick, crispy chicken breast, shredded cabbage, a generous layer of Kewpie mayo, and crustless milk bread. They make other sandwiches, too, like tonkatsu and choux sandwiches, but the katsu one is the star.
The Japanese cafe in the Mission is known for their delicious matcha drinks and pastries, but that’s not all they excel at—they also make a great katsu sandwich. Their housemade tonkatsu sauce is tart and a little sweet, and complements the panko-breaded pork loin nicely. Be sure to save room for a slice of their fantastic matcha cream pie.
Family Cafe is permanently closed
Editor’s Note: Family Cafe will be closing permanently on January 29th.
The kissaten-style cafe in North Beach is our go-to whenever we need a salad in sandwich form. Their King George sandwich is a rainbow of fresh, thinly sliced vegetables, and it’s really, really good. But this is a katsu sandwich guide, so let's stick to that. The sandwich is a lightly crispy chicken thigh topped with housemade katsu sauce, red and green cabbage. They also have a pickle katsu sandwich with a herb cashew dressing that we’re hoping to try next time—or, at least, whenever we crave green things.