“There’s a longtime fascination that every chef and cook has with sandwiches,” said Bisq’s Paul Clark. “Every single one of them, I think, in their heart, sees themselves ending up working at a small diner or sandwich shop in their later years.”
Clark and Bisq chef Alex Sáenz have put together a sandwich-focused menu for the Inman Square restaurant’s new outpost at Fenway’s food hall, Time Out Market Boston, opening tomorrow, June 27, at 401 Park Dr. (See more information on the market and its impressive lineup of local chefs and restaurants at the two links below.)
While the menu at the Bisq location at Time Out Market Boston isn’t a direct copy of the menu at the original location (the focus on sandwiches, for example, is new), a few of Bisq’s best-seller snacks will appear on the market menu, as will cheese plates. “[The two menus] are wildly dissimilar,” said Clark, but they share “attention to detail, quality of products, and sourcing locally when we can.”
Here’s a sneak peek at the Bisq menu for Time Out Market Boston, featuring an initial selection of four sandwiches — although the team has many more in mind for future rotation — a few snacks, and cheese and charcuterie boards.
The snacks: Bisq’s Time Out Market Boston menu includes three snacks at $6 each, aimed at providing quick bites for those who live or work in the area, or a good accompaniment to the market’s beverage options. There’s pimento cheese with a baguette, citrus-marinated olives, and ricotta toast. The toast is borrowed from Bisq’s Inman Square menu, and pimento cheese has also turned up in various forms at the original location.
The roasted pork sandwich: “I’m hoping this will be our signature sandwich,” said Clark. “This is a dish from chef Alex Sáenz’ childhood in Peru.” It features roasted pork and sweet potato on a soft bun, with salsa criolla (thinly sliced red onions with aji amarillo, lemon juice, and parsley).
“A little sweet, a little acidic, nice warm roasted pork,” said Clark. “We hope it really knocks everybody off their feet.”
The roast beef sandwich: Bisq’s roast beef sandwich is inspired by an entree that Clark made at one of his previous restaurants, a skirt steak with mushroom XO and grilled lettuce. “It was a fantastic summertime entree, and this is a way to reinvent those flavors and make it more casual.”
The sandwich includes rare roast beef, cabbage slaw, and mushroom XO sauce on sourdough. While XO, an umami-packed Chinese sauce, is typically made from ingredients including ham and dried scallops, Bisq’s mushroom-based version aims to achieve the same flavor in a vegetarian format. (The roast beef sandwich itself, of course, is not vegetarian.)
The turkey sandwich: When first drafting the menu for Bisq at Time Out Market Boston, the team didn’t have a turkey sandwich on it — a decision they soon revisited, said Clark, after everyone who looked at the draft asked, “Why no turkey?”
“So we wanted to think about what the definitive turkey sandwich is right now,” said Clark. “We looked at a ton of menus as we talked about sandwiches we’d had in the past. We made them for each other, and where we landed was a standard roast turkey with applewood smoked bacon, some beautiful mashed avocado, and lettuce from Little Leaf Farms.” The buttermilk ranch is the same that’s served with fried chicken at Bisq’s original location. The sandwich is served on Iggy’s multigrain.
The muffuletta: “When we polled everyone working for us about their favorite cold-cut sandwich, the Italian blew it away,” said Clark. “We were trying to think about what we could do that’s a little different, so we chose the muffuletta, a sandwich that originated in Italy and found its prominence in the United States, in New Orleans. It’s essentially your classic Italian sandwich, plus pickled giardiniera.”
While muffulettas traditionally include olives, the Bisq team is using a black olive aioli instead, “to complement the sandwich just a little differently,” said Clark.
Also on Bisq’s Time Out Market Boston menu: charcuterie and cheese boards in a couple sizes each. A small charcuterie board, for example, costs $20 and includes Serrano ham, sopressata, and capicola, while a small cheese board ($15) includes Cabot vintage, ricotta, and manchego. The larger sizes ($30 for charcuterie, $20 for cheese) include five options apiece instead of three.
Once the market gets underway, “you’ll be seeing more wild combinations of charcuterie and cheese,” said Clark.
The sandwich selection, too, will not remain static. “We’re starting with a small menu to make sure that everyone is operating at a hundred percent, and then we’ll slowly make additions,” said Clark. “We have about 40 sandwiches down on paper that we want to see cycle through the restaurant, and we’ve talked about everything from soups and salads to to-go platters for catering. We’ll also be doing a farmer-style platter, a mix of cheese and charcuterie with a nice loaf of bread that you can take on the go or enjoy on location.”
“We’re really enthusiastic, we’re really hands-on, and we can’t wait to get started,” said Clark.