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The Sandwich: Fried Catfish
Where: Small Fry, 3212 Georgia Ave. NW
Price: $11, including a choice of one side
Bread: White sandwich roll
Stuffings: Fried catfish, lettuce, tomato, red onion, house tartar sauce
Thickness: 3.5 inches
Pros: This sandwich shop from the owner of Sundevich lives up to the “fry” in its name: The catfish is crunchy on the outside but flaky and moist on the inside. A healthy spread of tangy housemade tartar sauce on both sides of the bun adds brightness.
Cons: The dense, slightly dry roll is so heavy that it overpowers the other ingredients. Not even the tomato and onion slices can cut through the breadiness. Plus, the whole thing could use a bit more salt.
Sloppiness level (1 to 5): 4. Putting lettuce directly on top of a bun spread with tartar sauce creates a slippery structure that slides apart when you take a bite. Expect to rebuild this sandwich multiple times before you can finish eating it.
Overall score (1 to 5): 3.5. While the core part of the sandwich—the catfish—is near perfect, its accompaniments bring the quality of this sandwich down a notch. If only it had the bold flavors of sandwiches sold at its sister shop.
Photo by Caroline Jones