Well, this was our second time visiting these delicate little shops. There are two Paseo’s in the Seattle area, both of them are in tiny little buildings without signs or anything. If you weren’t looking for it and missed the line outside the door, you’d miss it.
To summarize- Paseo is a great little sandwich shop specializing in Caribbean sandwiches such as cuban roasts, cuban presses, grilled pork sandwiches, etc. At first, after reading reviews on Yelp! I thought I got my hopes too high. So many 5/5 stars on Yelp!, that my expectations were skylevel. It’d be tough to meet them.
The first time I went, I had the cuban roast sandwich, probably their most popular item. We stood in line for about 10 minutes and received our warm sandwiches. They were delicious (i’ll go into depth later) but I felt rushed during my time in there. This was the Fremont location.
Today, we went to the Ballard location. We got there two minutes before it opened and were greeted by a couple of others who also were wanting these delicious sandwiches. I chose the Midnight Cuban Press- described below by Paseo as
“Our contribution to the Fremont arts. Cuban roast pork nestled atop sweet banana peppers, draped w/ sheer slices of smoked ham & Swiss cheese melted between a hot press. It’s a shame to eat such a masterpiece. (No lettuce or jalapeños)”
I’m personally not a huge banana pepper fan, but I’ll eat them. Mind you, I hate jalapenos and I do not think that they belong on sandwiches.
We received the two sandwiches and went on our merry way. Together, they were about $20. Pretty expensive for two sandwiches, not gonna lie.
As we drove to our destination, we each took bites of our morsels of goodness. She had the Cuban Roast, I the Midnight Cuban Press. Man. This one was good.
1 (Atmosphere). Two very small shops, but they’re so friendly. You can walk right into the line (which will always exist) and wait less than 15 minutes for a mouthwatering piece of heavenly goodness. However, there is little room for eating inside and the line has to move pretty quickly, so you may feel rushed. Beyond that, the fact that there are no signs may hinder from its notability, but its popularity is sustained through the word of mouth. If you look for it, you can find it, even without signs.
2. (Food eaten) The Midnight Cuban Press was by far the best sandwich I’ve eaten.
On top of a freshly baked and toasted baguette was a thin layer of homemade garlic butter. It wasn’t overpowering and it made the whole area around the sandwich shop smell amazing. After that came the banana peppers, fresh and crisp with a sour “zing” as you bit into them. Then the Swiss cheese, melted on top of some ham. The ham was pretty good, above average, but it complimented the cheese very nicely. Behind that lay the real stuff- the roast pork. Nothin’ special, just plain roast pork.
However, put it all together and you get a masterpiece of a sandwich. It’s warm and toasted, has the aroma of a delicious garlic buttery crust with fresh roast pork and ham in it, and tasted absolutely wonderful. Yet, for $9.50, is this a ripoff…?
3. Overall, there’s not much to say about Paseo other than it being absolutely wonderful. Your food will be the best sandwich you’ve ever eaten, as long as you dont extremely overhype the sandwich before actually having it (sandwiches can only taste so good!) The atmosphere was… interesting. It’s a small place, but because it’s so popular and good, you can’t expect a walkup-and-order place. It took some time to order, but the food was worth it. The sandwiches were amazing. That’s all. 9/10. The only thing I’d love is a larger area to sit.