Sandwich search: Bel Café's turkey cranberry sandwich is a holiday dinner between two slices of sourdough

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      For some odd reason, one of the food items I’ve been craving the most during the pandemic has been sandwiches.

      I’m not sure why—the only thing I can think of is that perhaps it’s an unconscious desire for a feeling of familiarity during a time of constant uncertainty and rapid change. After all, sandwiches were probably what I ate most regularly growing up. (Who knows—maybe there’s some nutrient deficiency at play as well.)

      However, it’s one preference that’s stayed with me for the duration of the pandemic so far.

      So I was particularly pleased when Bel Café (located at 801 West Georgia Street at Howe Street, and in Kitsilano at 1780 West 3rd Street at Burrard), launched its holiday-season turkey cranberry sandwich ($11).

      If you’ve ever wanted Christmas dinner in a sandwich, here it is. (One of my favourite sandwiches had always been the seasonal turkey stack at Mary’s on Davie, which is Thanksgiving dinner on sourdough.)

      It’s filled with turkey and shaved Brussels sprouts, accented with remoulade, grana padano cheese, and cranberry sauce. Savoury tender meat combined with the contrasting crunch of vegetables, and a mix of sweet and salty flavours—it’s all there. And all stuffed in between two slices of sourdough, pressed beautifully smooth.

      For vegetarians, there’s a plant-based option: roasted vegetable sandwich ($10), made with roasted squash contrasted with the sharp brightness of sliced Granny Smith apples, and accompanied with creamy brie and spiced pumpkin seeds atop whole wheat bread.

      To wash it all down, there are three seasonal hot drinks ($6 each) on offer to choose from: peppermint vanilla latte, gingerbread mocha (which doesn’t overdo it but hits the right sweet spot), and gingerbread hot chocolate.   

      And to counterbalance the savoury, for dessert, there’s the addictive spiced glazed gingerbread cookie ($2.75) or the delicately flavoured vanilla shortbread ($1.25 each or $10 for a box of eight).

      If you’re out and about running errands or gift shopping and need a moment of respite, it’s an option to consider for treating yourself and remembering what all this frenzied activity is all about.

      But like everything this season, it's only around for an brief frame of time—these seasonal offerings will be available until January.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook.