While Evanston really isn't that far from Chicago, in fact it is an immediate suburb, because of the layout of roads and highways, it does take some planning to get there if you aren't going to be driving there. There are several nice restaurants at a variety of price points. I was going to be coming to Evanston for reasons other than eating but as I was going to be there during dinner time, it made sense to eat there. I had had a large meal earlier in the day so I was looking for something lighter. A friend had mentioned Soulwich earlier and it sounded interesting so I decided to check it out. Located on a street in downtown Evanston that presently doesn't have a lot of active business, it is easy to forget about. It's a small restaurant that's relatively easy to find. The storefront is a window wall, the walls are white, and there is some Asian art hanging on the walls. There is a long bar along one side with tables on the other. The tables are typical sandwich shop tables but in a variety of pastel colors. The staff was very friendly and helpful. Soulwich specializes in sandwiches and salads using Asian ingredients. Sandwiches are generally not the first thing that come to mind when I think of Asian food but then I think of a Vietnamese Banh Mi and can see it. Soulwich has eight sandwiches and three salads using a variety of Asian styles including Burmese, Thai, Indian, Japanese, Chinese, and Indonesian. All of the sandwiches can be vegetarian, although depending on the sandwich, you can add beef, chicken, or pork. Everything looked very good so it was a little tough to decide what I wanted. I finally decided though, to go with the Burmese Coconut Curry Sandwich with Pork. Aside from the pork, the sandwich came with Pickled Carrots, Cucumber, Chili Aioli, Cilantro, Burmese Coconut Curry, Onion, Raisin, and Coconut which is served on toasted, locally made artisanal bread. The bread was like the best baguettes, crispy and crunchy crust, and a soft and fluffy interior with lots of air holes. The carrots and cucumber were crispy and fresh. The meat was very tender and the coconut curry mixed with the chili aioli was very sweet and spicy. The sandwiches also came with a side. You could either get housemade chips in original, wasabi, or Burmese flavor, or Asian slaw, which has no mayo. As I had a Burmese flavored sandwich, I decided to go with the Burmese flavored chips which were very crunchy, salty, and a little spicy. As far drinks were concerned, they have water, tea, lemonade, and ginger ale. While I do like ginger ale, I grew up with Vernors so I think that most ginger ales is pretty bland. The ginger ale served here is very strong and very good.
Suffice it to say that I liked everything about this. The food was good, the people were friendly, and the space looked nice. The variety of sandwiches was really interesting and appetizing and I will definitely have to return when I go to Evanston again.