UPDATE: I am a moron. Pastrami is made from cow, not from pig. Have I lost all my pig-loving cred? Geez Louise. Please commence your snickering.
Warning: I am not a pastrami expert. I have no strong feelings about one pastrami joint versus another; I've never been to Los Angeles institutions like Langer's or The Hat. I don't know what pastrami "should" taste like. I know it probably shouldn't taste like the turkey pastrami I've purchased at Trader Joe's, but that's about it.
I am an expert on what I like, however, and I can tell you that the house-cured pastrami served at The Oinkster in Eagle Rock is some of the best damn pork (oops, beef) I've ever tasted. Tender, smoky, spiced and salty, I can't help but think pig (ummm, cows) were made to be pastrami-ed.
The bun? It could be improved. It needed to be crustier, more sturdy and able to soak up the juice. The peanut butter and jelly cupcake? Other than the frosting, not worth the calories. The fries? Eh. They were fries. Not bad, not fantastic, better dipped in the yummy chipotle ketchup. J claims the best pastramis come with mustard and pickles already on the sandwich, which the Oinkster's doesn't. But the meat!! It's so good. J had to stop me from licking up every last tiny piece off our tray.
The Oinkster calls itself a "slow fast food restaurant"--operating under the (good) assumption that great food doesn't have to be expensive or fancy. It also serves burgers, rotisserie chicken, a few salads for the Eagle Rocker moms who won't do fat, and some tasty-lookin' milkshakes made with Fosselman's ice cream, in a '50s-esque, sunny space, with a lovely patio to boot. Did I mention the pastrami's fantabulous? You should go. Now.
2005 Colorado Blvd
Eagle Rock, CA