The Paninoteca L’Incontro is a sandwich shop that promises “l’incontro,” an encounter. I entered the doors into a small space where plenty of locals waited patiently. The place smelled of onions, fresh bread and baked beans which was oddly comforting coming in from the bipolar weather. The floors were staggered white and blue tile, the kitchen before us was an old fashioned baby blue sandwich bar that at one time had probably served gelato when Audrey Hepburn was running around the streets of Rome with Gregory Peck. A 15 inch television in the upper corner of the wall was fixed into place just above the bread slicing station. It was playing the 1973 film My Name is Nobody dubbed in Italian and directed by director Enzo Barboni who was born and raised in Rome.
Not knowing much of the Italian language besides vino bianco I blindly stared at the small menu taped to the glass of the sandwich bar. With only 6 to choose from and next to each a photo of a character from the Trinity Series of which I am very familiar since my dad is a fan of the films in which beans play an important part of the characters’ diet and adds some flatulent humour in the mix of the Spaghetti Western.
Very confused at the theme of this sandwich shop I decided to pick my sandwiches by character and order the Panino Trinita and the Panino Bambino, figuring that the best sandwiches must be reserved for the lead characters. Result: Cheap and filling massive sandwich.