Got Beef?

Where to Satisfy Your Katsu Sando Cravings

For cheap, that is.

By Timothy Malcolm December 31, 2018 Published in the January 2019 issue of Houstonia Magazine

You may have heard of the katsu sando, which has now become a full-fledged, international trend. It usually consists of a fried beef, chicken, pork, or seafood cutlet with tonkatsu sauce between milk bread. There’s a famously lavish Kobe beef version on offer at B&B Butchers & Restaurant, yours for $120. But more affordable options are out there, too, at these local spots also putting their own tasty twist on the sandwich:

Fat Bao

The pork katsu at the popular steamed-bun sandwich shop stars a fatty, fried pork belly, balanced by creamy avocado and a tart cabbage slaw, coated in a sweet tonkatsu sauce and tucked inside a tender, fluffy bun. It’s so good, you may have to order two.

Ramen Tatsu-Ya

Yes, the ramen is the move here, but a delectable “munchie katsu slider” won’t ruin your appetite. A panko-crusted beef patty is bathed in acidic tonkatsu sauce and served with crunchy cabbage inside a charred Hawaiian roll. This little slice of heaven is paired with a healthy pile of bread-and-butter pickles, the perfect palate cleanser.

Waikiki Grill

The monstrous chicken katsu wrap at this Hawaiian grill inside a Humble strip mall, meanwhile, is definitely a meal in itself. Slices of breaded poultry, along with lettuce, tomato, cheddar, and a creamy and tart mayonnaise, come inside a whole-wheat wrap—a far cry from classic katsu, yes, but a worthy iteration.

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