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Lansing, Michigan, United States
I am a Lansing townie, lawyer, and restaurant reviewer for the City Pulse. I love traveling, reading, yoga, and baking, but my favorite hobby is stuffing my face.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Frita Batidos, Twice

With regard to Michigan's two largest college towns- East Lansing and Ann Arbor- I think they can best be described by making a blanket statement about the area surrounding them. The Lansing area, to me, is blue collar. We have a lot of (defunct) factories. We don't have great shopping, and we aren't traditionally thought of as having any good eating. I also know about a hundred union organizers. And when I was in high school we couldn't always have soccer practice outside because the fumes coming from the neighboring GM plant were too strong.

Ann Arbor, on the other hand, is hippie. Everybody's got dreadlocks. I see a lot of tie dye and smell a lot of weed. They also have two Whole Foods and a Trader Joe's, so I might just be jealous.

I don't go to Ann Arbor very frequently. However, I have been there twice in the last few months, and I have eaten lunch at the same place both times- Frita Batidos. I don't always watch Top Chef, and I must have missed the season that featured Eve from Ann Arbor. If that's your cup of tea, Eve is the owner of Frita Batidos. The menu features lots of sandwiches, fries, interesting side dishes like conch fritters and plantains, and fresh-squeezed sodas and juices. 

On the advice of my friend Kelly, who also pointed me in the direction of the restaurant, my first lunch was a Fish Frita with Tropical Coleslaw, Garlic Cilantro Fries, and a Passionfruit Tropical Soda.

The sandwich was massive. The brioche that it came on was a little sweet for me, so I got rid of the top piece and ate the rest of it with a knife and fork. The sandwich actually already had some shoestring fries topping it, so the fact that I also got an entire huge order of fries was nothing but gluttony running my life. As it always does.

These fries. Yummmmm these fries. Now I can't stop thinking about them again. First of all, the portion is massive. I wondered how I was going to drive all the way back to Lansing with my car smelling like garlic and cilantro and how I would best heat them up when I got home, but then I stopped kidding myself and admitted that I would eat these fries in the car, all the way home, greasy steering wheel be damned.

Actually, I gave the remainder of the fries (after my stomach sent me a text, threatening to explode) to my tablemates. The woman had TATTOOED EYEBROWS. They weren't tattooed to look like normal eyebrows, she had small intricate designs tattooed onto her face. See what I mean about hippies?

I washed this all down with a passionfruit tropical soda.

And then I cried all the way home because the last fish sandwich I had in Lansing was at McDonald's. But then, of course, you get to sing this-

I went to Frita's again last week. This time I had a game plan- I wasn't going to get as much food so I wouldn't be totally uncomfortably stuffed an unable to eat churros and drink coffee at the end of my meal.

I think we all know that didn't happen.

This time I got the Inspired Cuban Combo- half of the Inspired Cuban sandwich and I chose for my side the Best Snack Ever- layered coconut ginger rice, black beans, melted muenster & cilantro lime salsa.

Most of this actually did make it home with me, because I knew that if I started eating beans and rice I wouldn't stop and I wouldn't be able to pay any attention to my sandwich.

This is MY KIND OF SANDWICH. There is so much meat on this sandwich, I was pretty sure that I was going to turn into a giant guy and be recruited into a biker gang right there. I would have been ok with that, if we get to eat these sandwiches. As I was trying to eat this slowly and avoid looking like an insane person, I started to read a sign on the wall about how they make their bread. Don't read this unless you want to know that your mouth is currently full of lard. You'd think that fun fact would have maybe given me a little pause, but it didn't. Yeah, I eat lard. Suck a million.

I also had a baggie full of fresh squeezed Ginger Lime Juice. Yes, it came in a baggie with a straw sticking out of it. This juice was spicy as heck, too. I loved it. I'd like to buy that by the gallon and drink it all day, before I have a heart attack because I just ate ten Inspired Cuban sandwiches.

I think the trick is going to be to return to Fritas with another person, so we can share things and I can finally get to the churros. Since I am taking my last exam tomorrow night and will be done with law school, this trip might happen soon.

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