My brother is a chef. In the early aughts, he opened a market and cafe in Vermont, serving excellent panini when panini were still a bit of a novelty. When he was designing his menu, I entreated him to add something I called a Gogi Hoagie. I thought bulgogi on a pressed sandwich was sure to be a hit. He didn’t agree.
Fast forward a couple of decades and the dream had all but died. Until I went to Lotte Plaza in Chantilly for some fried chicken, that is. ChicKing opened there last month, in the space formerly occupied by Chin Jung Jip Dumpling, now located on the other side of the store. I was there for fried chicken. The crispy poultry proved to be tasty, but nothing above average. But I have a new sandwich I can’t get out of my head. Meet the Ribeye Bulgogi Supreme Sub.
It’s essentially a cheesesteak, but with garlicky marinated bulgogi as the centerpiece of the sandwich. There is a regular, unmarinated ribeye cheesesteak on the menu, too, but why would you want that when you can experience the oddly satisfying combination of bulgogi and melty American cheese? It called to mind a killer grilled cheese I wish I had eaten long ago.
But it was so much more. The sturdy roll is spread with a mayo-based sauce that melds with the sweet, tender yellow peppers and onions. Even the lettuce on top is as market-fresh and crunchy as one would hope from a sandwich that’s prepared at a grocery store.
My final appraisal? I finally found the Gogi Hoagie that’s been on my mind for 20 years, and, yes, it was worth the wait.// 13955 Metrotech Dr., Chantilly
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