At Mister Bolenca, the Art of the Asian-Inspired Sandwich
Art Business

At Mister Bolenca, the Art of the Asian-Inspired Sandwich

One breakfast sandwich pairs crispy eggs with Sichuan chili oil, arugula, and pickles. Inside Highwire Coffee Roasters on San Pablo Avenue, past the whirring espresso machine, Sincere Justice manages his domain. Specifically, his domain comprises of a few square feet with a small flat top, an oven, and little else. Yet size clearly doesn’t matter — Justice creates huge, nuanced flavors out of Mister Bolenca, the permanent pop-up he launched out of Highwire last fall. Justice describes Mister Bolenca as an Asian-inspired sandwich shop, but that’s far too narrow of a description. The flavor combinations reflect Justice’s unique background and perspective as the son of Chinese-Vietnamese immigrants who grew up in Baldwin Park, a predominantly Mexican neighborhood in Los Angeles. On the weekends, he feasted on birria at a friend’s house. With his family, dining out usually meant Cantonese and Vietnamese restaurants. Traveling throughout Asia and Latin America broadened his palette of ingredients, and Tokyo in particular showed him how chefs can execute amazing dishes out of the smallest spaces. Before Mister Bolenca, Justice ran Crosta Panini Bar, the last sandwich shop to operate out of Highwire. It was his friend’s business, but then that friend decided to enter […]

OrangeniusInc Tweets