In August, I started writing about the celebrity Sandwich of the Month at Falafill.

I think this is a genius marketing idea and also a cool way to introduce Oak Parkers to some of the chefs that are defining contemporary Chicago cuisine.

Pat and Mike Sheerin are the brothers behind Trenchermen, one of the most anticipated restaurants to open in Chicago last summer. I went there a few weeks ago and was impressed with their commitment to hand-crafted food and beverages, as well as the fun (pickle tots!) that the Sheerin brothers bring to the job.

For October’s Falafill sandwich of the month, the brothers Sheerin have created butternut squash falafel with duck confit, cocoanut curry aioli, pickled watermelon rind and cilantro leaves. That’s a whole lotta of flavor going on in this sandwich.

This is a sizeable helping of duck confit (about which I will never complain), and the cocoanut curry aioli is a surprisingly beautiful complement to the moist duck meat.

The butternut squash falafel is a promising idea as it leverages a seasonally appropriate ingredient vegetable, but one drawback is that squash is really difficult to crisp up (think sweet potato fries). The falafel kind of fell apart and got lost in what is already a lot of different flavors.

Pickled watermelon rind, I love, but it was hard to discern the flavor of this condiment in this rather complex sandwich.

Still, for $6.50, this is a good lunch, and a lot more interesting than a lot of lunches at the same price.

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David Hammond

David Hammond, a corporate communications consultant and food journalist living in Oak Park, Illinois, is a founder and moderator of, the 8,500 member Chicago-based culinary chat site. David...