Apache-style burger at Grindhouse Killer Burgers
A freshly ground hamburger patty (two of them, if you want) is topped with roasted Hatch green chilies, pepper jack cheese and grilled onions. Tangy but not sizzling-hot, the juicy burger allows you to eat the best chilies in America while grooving on a décor and menu that are pleasingly nostalgic if you're old, and retro-campy if you're young. $6.25. 1842 Piedmont Ave. 404-254-2273. www.grindhouseburgers.com.
Burger and fries at Bocado
Two freshly ground thin patties are griddle-cooked, giving the edges alluring crispy bits. Oozing, melting American cheese and a pillowy soft bun render a supremely squishable burger with just the right amount of grease to make it naughty. It's like someone with an intimate knowledge of the McDonald's double cheeseburger made the quality, grown-up version. Someone supersize me. SHOUT-OUT: Cauliflower and eggplant sandwich. $12. 887 Howell Mill Road. 404-815-1399. www.bocadoatlanta.com.
Double bacon cheeseburger at Ann's Snack Bar
In 2007, the Wall Street Journal named Ann Price's chili-drenched "ghetto burger" the best in America. Weirdly, the author actually described the tiny, picturesque diner's double bacon cheeseburger, and that is indeed the best choice here. It's humongous, with super-crispy bacon, American cheese and meat with "secret seasoning." Get fries on the side. Wash it down with teeth-tingling swee' tea. Plan to wait in line. $5. 1615 Memorial Drive. 404-687-9207.
Earl dog at the Earl
The band is blasting. The PBRs are good. Too good. You need some tummy padding, and fast. Luckily, the best drunk food in town is already here. A big, fluffy bun, a 100-percent Angus dog with all the snap and salt you crave. Get it with the works (tomato, onion, cheddar cheese, jalapeños, red and green pepper mix, and dill relish). Spill it down your hipster shirt. Better? Now, more band, more beer. $6.50. 488 Flat Shoals Ave. 404-522-3950. www.badearl.com.
Hamburg bun at Miso Izakaya
If Hello Kitty had a mouth, she'd take great pleasure in this Japanese version of a slider. The delicate white bun is folded over and pinned to contain a patty of freshly ground pork belly and beef. The patty is topped with a fried quail egg and grilled onions. It's beautiful architecture and reverberates with far more flavor than the typical slider around town. $4. 619 Edgewood Ave. 678-701-0128.
Jalapeño focaccia at Highland Bakery
Who says bread has to be bready? Who says it can't be a big cheesy, spicy mess? The jalapeño focaccia is barely bread at all, but rather a means by which to shove spicy-ass cheese in your face. Slices of the scorching pepper stud the cheesy ravines of fluffy, doughy bread. We like it best as a vehicle for the tuna salad sandwich, but it's just as good on its own. $5.99 per loaf. 655 Highland Ave., Suite 10. 404-586-0772. www.highlandbakery.com.
Lamb sandwich at Artisan Foods Bakery
The menu description sounds straightforward enough: roasted lamb, mixed lettuce, vine-ripe tomatoes, caramelized onion, balsamic vinaigrette on toasted sourdough. But it's that lamb — roasted here daily and cut off the bone to order in tender hot lamby slices, all pink meat and crispy fat — that makes this sandwich the stuff of meaty dreams. $10.70 1169 Canton St. 770-998-1169. www.artisanfoodsbakery.com.
Medio Dia sandwich at Super Pan Latino Sandwich Shop
Say "hasta luego" to the classic Cuban sandwich and say hello to this stunning version on a pineapple "submarino" roll. In between the bread slices are roasted pork and ham, chayote pickles, Swiss cheese, habanero mustard and clove salt. But here's the killer: Punctuating bites of the highly flavorful, sourced meats are bits of crunchy pork skin, like chicharrónes or your mama's cracklins. Way magnifico. $13. 1057 Blue Ridge Ave. 404-477-0379. www.superpanlatinosandwichshop.com.
Mega torta at Mega Taco Taqueria y Marisqueria
A mega hangover calls for mega relief, and this hulking sandwich gets the job done. A crisp bolillo stuffed with everything from ham to egg to breaded and fried beef to gooey white cheese is somewhat intimidating at first glance. But go ahead and stuff your face without shame; it's too delicious not to. $4.77. 2055 Beaver Ruin Road, Norcross. 770-248-0097.
Original Philly cheese steak at Roy's Cheesesteak
As good as any cheese steak you'll get on a Philly street corner. A long, soft hoagie roll stuffed with chopped marinated skirt steak, round and sirloin beef oozes Cheez Whiz. Hot juices soak the roll and run down your hands as you attack it. And you will attack it. Small: $4.75; large: $6.94. 2900 Highlands Parkway, Smyrna. 404-799-7939.
Pulled pork barbecue sandwich at P'cheen
Available only on Mondays during P'cheen's weekly barbecue extravaganza, this cultural mishmash of a sandwich hits all the sloppy, spicy, piggy notes to satiate that 'cue craving. The whole hog pulled barbecue comes on buttered Texas toast with pickles and slaw; douse it with the North Carolina-style spicy vinegar sauce for the best results. A side is included — we recommend the absurdly hot jalapeño mac and cheese. $8. 701 Highland Ave., Suite 5. 404-529-8800. www.pcheen.com.
Reuben panini at Wienerz Butcher Shop & Deli
To be considered a master of Reuben, an establishment must lock down five crucial components: crunchy toasted rye bread, gooey cheese, oozing Thousand Island dressing, biting sauerkraut, and loads of juicy meat. Wienerz gets it all right and ups the ante by pressing the sandwich down panini style. So this notoriously messy specimen is not only easy to eat, but portable as well. $5.69. 1592 Atlanta Road, Marietta. 770-426-8100. www.wienerz.com.
Short rib sandwich at Holy Taco
Are you looking for a burger-esque reprieve from burgers? This is it: thick, juicy short ribs, Walker Farm turnips, Manchego cheese and arbol aïoli on a slightly crispy, oval bun. Don't be surprised if you find sliced radishes and pink peppercorns in the mix, too. You will awaken in the middle of the night craving this. $8. 1314 Glenwood Ave. 404-230-6177. www.holy-taco.com.
Shrimp po'boy at Star Provisions
It's not exactly a classic po'boy, since it's made on a soft, toasted hoagie roll instead of NOLA's mandatory French-style bread. Who cares, when you're eating six jumbo shrimp fried till crispy, set atop buttery lettuce and dressed with a piquant rémoulade? $9.95. 1198 Howell Mill Road. 404-365-0410. www.starprovisions.com.
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