The Eric of Sandwich

Fred Eric harmonizes between bread at D'elish Sandwich Shop

Fred Eric has had quite a few gigs during his decade-long career as L.A.'s resident roving mad chef.

The one constant: an admiration of all things stuffed between two slices of bread.

His newest project is D'elish Sandwich Shop, a lunchtime-only deli counter attached to his Downtown restaurant, Tiara Café, which channels that energy into a dozen globe-spanning, made-from-scratch sandwiches.

For his supple pastrami-smoked short rib ($9), Eric brines meat for three days, then smokes it for four hours. After piling the meat inside a soft potato bun baked on-site, he tops it with fresh coleslaw and house-pickled jalapeños.

Other creations are just as thoughtfully prepared: a Vietnamese banh mi made with house-cured pork belly and ham-hock terrine ($9); crunchy falafel with spicy eggplant and Israeli salad ($8); and roasted beets with whipped goat cheese, pumpkin seeds and arugula ($8).

Eric insists that every sandwich has a story, and with a résumé like his, we believe it. The Italian Sub ($8) recalls his days at Rex, while the smoked-turkey torta ($8) is an homage to a recipe from longtime friend Octavio Becerra's mother.

No matter how you slice it, there's no longer any excuse to settle for that stale PB&J sitting in the break room fridge.