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The Best Damn Sandwich. Seriously.

by Tony · 15 comments

Fuente Alemana LomitoMaybe it was that first college class where you found the subject actually interesting and realized you wanted to learn more…

Maybe you confidently walked into that party your Senior year in college and saw that cute girl across the room…

Maybe it was that job interview where the interviewer and your future boss laughed at all of your jokes…

… but for whatever reason, you knew ahead of time, before anything spine-tingling good had even occurred, that your life would be forever altered.

That was me at La Fuente Alemana.

Fuente Alemana – Best Damn Sandwich

Counter at Fuente Alemana

Good luck finding a seat...

Stoves, surrounded by cooks, surrounded by a square counter, surrounded by patrons without an extra seat available, surrounded by a standing room only counter filled with hungry locals waiting their turn.

Such was the scene that greeted us as we entered La Fuente Alemana.


Heck, no!

If there ever was a place to have lunch in Santiago, this had to be it.

After 1.5 weeks in Santiago, we knew the drill.

How To Order At La Fuente Alemana

Fuente Alemana grill

Is there anything better than a sizzling sandwich?

  1. Ignore the cashier line which is just for people who already had their fill and need to pay their bill.
  2. Grab two open seats (one for you and the other for the sexy lady you are with), but if they are not open just squeeze into the standing room counter on the outside of the restaurant.
  3. Make some serious, borderline harassment-style, eyes at the waitress and know what you want before she looks back.
  4. Order and then patiently wait for your delicious sandwiches to be served.

What To Get

  1. The Lomito is a must. You can order it with anything on top, but might I suggest the Chilean sauerkraut (just go with it), avocado, and mayo (AKA The Completo). Oh, and there will be some super moist pork in there between two amazing slices of bread.
  2. Try the Chacerero. There is a ridiculously good Chacerero place in Boston near where I used to work, so I had to see if the real-life thing held up. Shockingly, while La Fuente Alemana’s Chacerero was fantastic, I think the champion’s belt goes to that delicious shop in Boston.
  3. ”Cuál es tu favorita?” Or for the gringos out there… “What is your favorite?” Let yourself be surprised by your waitresses favorite dish. it must be good, right? She works there all day and still hasn’t gotten sick of it… it must be amazing!
  4. Don’t be worried if you’ve just had lunch. Stop in anyways and pig out. You will not regret it.

How To Eat These Monster Sandwiches

  1. Check out the locals. They are all around you inside the restaurant so take a quick scan. Despite what some people might say, when we were there all of the locals look refined eating this monster sandwich with their fork and knife. It’s just too big and messy to use your hands!
  2. Get in there. Don’t be shy. These suckers aren’t meant to be handled with care.
  3. Keep your head down and your elbows in. With few seats available, personal space is at a premium. Don’t bother trying to make small talk with the locals as everyone, yourself included, will be too busy devouring a delicious slab of heaven.

La Fuente Alemana – The Final Word

Sign of Fuente Alemana

A sandwich is what you make when late for work and need something for lunch.

A sandwich is a couple pieces of bread with a few pieces of meat and maybe a veggie or two in-between.

A sandwich is not what is served at La Fuente Alemana.

What they serve is a religion.

La Fuente Alemana is where you worship meat and bless yourself with their delicious sauces.

Like all seminal moments in life, I could sense that something big was about to happen as I entered the restaurants doors.

Little did I know, I would leave as only the latest disciple for the temple that is La Fuente Alemana.

About Tony
Quit his job to try actually following his dreams for once... and is currently loving it. He is working hard to to make this life-style permanent by writing about his adventures and brainstorming money making opportunities with his partner-in-crime, Meg.

Emily in Chile February 8, 2012 at 5:42 pm

This cracked me up! We used to live in the building above Fuente Alemana, and I’ve had many a sandwich there. My current favorite is a different place, but wherever you go, it’s hard to be a delicious Chilean sandwich.

Tony February 9, 2012 at 10:00 pm

OOOOO a place better than La Fuente Alemana? Please share! I seriously contemplated getting a second sandwich even though the first caused me to loosen my belt…

I would have weighed easily 250 lbs if I lived above this place… i’m impressed.

Adventurous Kate February 8, 2012 at 6:00 pm

CHACARERO! I used to work on that same block and would go there for lunch! (Though I have to be honest — the Herrera’s burrito cart won more often.)

That looks like an epic sandwich. I want I want I want I want…

Tony February 9, 2012 at 10:07 pm

Amazing! I used to work for Wells Fargo right in that Bank of NY Mellon building on the corner of Washington and State/Court St. My loyalty will always lie with Anna’s for a good burito… so I had to steer clear of Herrera’s and just crush some Chacerero instead… Not a bad consolation!

Magz February 10, 2012 at 9:49 pm

Wow… now THAT is some serious sandwich love going on. How did Meg feel about your epic love affair with La Fuente Alemana??

Also – I can really respect the type of Spanish you’re learning: “Cuál es tu favorita?” -it’s pure food spanish. Touche.

Tony February 10, 2012 at 10:14 pm

Meg and I have an open relationship when it comes to food… we’re very 21st century.

And OF COURSE food spanish is the only spanish we know. Although Meg is really becoming quite fluent in that special food dialect of ice cream. Puedo Probar _____, por favor? May I have a taste of ____, please?

Noah & Anne February 10, 2012 at 11:31 pm

Thanks for this – we’re going to be in Santiago later this year, and we’re going to have to try this out. We have a Chilean exchange student living with us now in Seattle, and he also loves this place. He says that this fits into the category of “picada” – cool places that don’t cost too much. :)

Tony February 11, 2012 at 10:51 am

It is ridiculously fun to eat here… I already miss it now that we are out of Santiago!

So exciting about your whole family traveling this year! Amazing thing you are doing. Best of luck and can’t wait to read about it. We want to see the sunrise over Machu Pichu too! We are trekking on the March 28th and cannot wait!

PS… love that map you have showing the trip. How did you create it?

Noah & Anne February 11, 2012 at 3:42 pm

The map was created by the Travellerspoint site that we are hosting the blog through. Very easy, although I also know how to do in WP.

Tony February 13, 2012 at 12:07 pm

Would love to hear how to do it in WP… such a cool format!

Laura February 12, 2012 at 9:40 am

Looks so delicious!

Kate February 12, 2012 at 8:14 pm

Amazing, we seem to have gone to many of the same places. We ate here on our first evening in Santiago. Two shy Americans trying to order when we didn’t know what or how to order! The whole staff knew less English than we knew Spanish. We shared one sandwich and left there quite full.

Tony February 13, 2012 at 12:08 pm

We ordered two sandwiches and weren’t sure if we could handle them… but ohhhh did we. I might have been able to finish two, but would have needed Meg to roll me outta there.

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