Happy Hot Pastrami Sandwich Day!
Ugly Drum is the king of pit-smoked pastrami. I don’t claim to be a pastrami connoisseur, but I’ve had pastrami from coast-to-coast — from Katz’s to Canter’s — and Ugly Drum’s perfect pastrami has them all beat. The spice rub on the meat is packed with intense flavor. It’s smoky, salty, peppery, and oh-so-tender. The pastrami flakes off and melts in your mouth like butter. The thick slices of meat are hugged by a simple rye bread and a generous spread of grainy mustard, and each bite of the sandwich is rich and juicy.
Just look at that meat!
The Ugly Drum stand at Smorgasburg keeps it simple. They’re cash only, and they’re only about the pastrami. You can add a pickle, if you like — but other than that, they’re really no frills. You can choose a quarter pound of pastrami (half sandwich), or a half pound of pastrami (whole sandwich). A quarter pound is pretty hefty and certainly enough for one hungry person. But I’m not stopping anyone from the treat/indulgence of a half pound of smoked pastrami.
But if you want to be #extra, you can also add a tray of burnt ends to your order. Or if you’re trying to cut down on carbs, you could order just the burnt ends. Either way, GET THE BURNT ENDS.
The burnt ends tray is literally a tray of the nice, crispy ends of the smoked pastrami. The chunks (end pieces) are super charred with that heavy spice rub, but you still get that luscious hunk of melt-in-your-mouth meat after you bite through the crispy outer layer. The grainy mustard is a nice dipping sauce, too.
Ugly Drum is at Smorgasburg in Los Angeles every Sunday, so you can get your pastrami fix any weekend. But if you can’t make it out to Smorgasburg, or if you’re craving pit-smoked meat Monday through Saturday, you can also order their pastrami brisket online — which means you can celebrate National Hot Pastrami Sandwich Day every day!