There are so many foodstuffs that are consumed in one way and one way only (we're not talking to you bananas, which are good on both cereal and eaten straight, nor you, ice cream, which is perfect scooped and ideal in a milkshake).
On the opposite end of that unyielding, single-option-ized way of consuming a comestible is the meatball, a glistening hearty orb that has its backers in a few areas. The first area? Meatballs atop pasta, a sight so becoming they look like little round crowns atop any kingly dish. Two? In a sub of some sort, covered with melted cheese and marinara. And three? Neat. Straight-up. Just a plate with a big ol' meatball on it.
Which camp do you occupy? It's okay if you move among the three, depending on circumstance, because circumstance is always a fine thing to consider before sinking a fork into a hunk of beef, lamb, turkey or soy. (Don't cock your eyebrow: A piquant soy meatball can go the distance.)
Meatball Day is upon us, on March 9. True, it coincides with Meatless Monday -- meaning you might want to consider the soy route -- but if you've got to go classic ball, make for...
RockSugar Pan Asian: The Century City restaurant is doing up a banh mi, but with a spicy chicken meatball twist. Accompanying the meatballs inside the sub-like sandwich? Cucumber and pickled carrots (there's also a version with Thai basil, chilis, mint, and cilantro).
Huckleberry Cafe: So you're in Santa Monica and you're longing for something on ciabatta, which is a perfectly common longing, because ciabatta is a queen among chewy, soft breads. Head for this sweet, sandwich-plus outpost which does up a warm turkey meatball deal on, you guessed it, ciabatta.
Spaghettini & the Dave Koz Lounge: A tried-and-tasty meatball with pomodoro plus Parmigiano-Reggiano? That's on the social bites menu of this tune-cool hangout in Beverly Hills. Do meatballs pair well with the enjoyment of music? When you're full you're focused, so let's say a hearty yes.