A $120 Sandwich?
Washington Avenue steakhouse heats up with $120 splurge-worthy sandwich
Typically, steakhouses are pretty staid when it comes to their menus. They don’t really change.
Maybe somebody should tell to Ben Berg. The owner of B&B Butchers always seems to be tweaking the offerings at his Washington Avenue restaurant.
Berg’s latest innovation hits the menu next week: a Japanese-style katsu sando. Inspired by a trend in New York and Japan, the sandwich features between six and seven ounces of authentic Japanese A5 wagyu beef that’s panko-crusted and deep fried. Served on Japanese-style white bread with a little katsu sauce and a side of zucchini fries, the sandwich will retail for a splurge-worthy $120. Obviously, that's not cheap, but Berg says his cost on the beef alone is about $75. So why serve it at all?
“We have the Japanese beef. I’ve had the sandwich in New York,” Berg tells CultureMap. “I loved it. It was fantastic. I really just wanted to do it.”
It took Berg and chef Tommy Elbashary about a month to perfect the recipe by identifying the right cut of beef and creating the sauce. After securing the right style of bread from a local bakery and purchasing appropriate plateware, the sandwich is ready to serve to the general public. It will be an off-the-menu special for now but should go on full-time after Houston Restaurant Weeks.
In 2016, B&B became the first Houston restaurant to be certified to serve authentic Kobe beef. Berg says he now sells about a pound a day. Given that, he thinks he could sell two or three katsu sandos a day. The response to a couple of test runs has been favorable.
“People are blown away by it. They loved it,” Berg says.
For $120, they better. Knowing Berg’s obsession to detail and creative mind, they almost certainly will.