Reuben texted us that he was going to sell out hours before our scheduled meeting, but that he would save a sandwich for the photoshoot. Off to Demarco’s we rushed, as quickly as possible, so he could make us the renowned Toker’s Turkey sandwich before shutting down the cart for the day.
Upon arrival, Owner Reuben Demarco explains what we’re already thinking: “It’s basically a Thanksgiving sandwich. After Thanksgiving, what do you do with the leftovers? You smoke a bunch of weed and in the middle of the night, you get into the fridge and you make this sandwich.”
We watch as he works his magic on the flat top. He positions thinly-sliced, house-smoked turkey to heat alongside crispy hash browns and a fluffy pile of savory stuffing. This all gets stacked on a french roll from a local bakery, slathered in cranberry sauce and complemented with a slice of cheddar.
Au jus? Step aside. To complete the package, a generous serving of turkey gravy is ladled into a cup for dipping.
We brought along a nice jar and a few joints of Lofty Grower’s Carbon Fiber to help us work up an appetite. Lofty, in their first year of operation, was started by some of Oregon’s legacy growers. For it being early in their production cycle, the flower looks dialed in and is practically dripping in sticky trichomes.
The Carbon Fiber buds are compact without being too dense and have a telltale, tight hand trim. Breaking up the flower, the profile reads as ultra-sweet gas with some earthy complements. Sugar cane and savory notes combine and offer a nearly boozy scent. Baking bread and bakery aromas round out the profile and give it a more rich profile than most.
Altogether, Carbon Fiber is exactly the sort of aperitif you want to enjoy before you further indulge in a Toker’s Turkey. In fact, the Cannabis culture is a big reason Reuben moved out here a decade and a half ago. Originally from Boston, Demarco came out west following the Dead on tour and returned for the good herb and excellent fly fishing. Growing Cannabis was a good way to support himself early on, but it was cooking that he couldn’t shake.
“I’ve been cooking my whole life and this place really makes me enjoy it. It’s all totally my own vision,” explains Reuben. “I’m here every day at 5 a.m. grabbing the bread from Binh Minh bakery and getting the cart opened up. I’m just trying to put out a product that would make me proud and make food that represents the East Coast scene I grew up with. I put a lot of pride into everything I make – it’s a lot of work, but everyone that comes by is in a good mood. I get that one day off a week where I can go fly fishing and let the river wash the stress away. It’s pretty nice.”
Maybe it’s the Carbon Fiber talking, but he seems like a guy that’s figured it all out. Especially when I hear those magic words, “Hey, before you go – let me get a side of gravy for ya.”
4606 SE Division St., Portland
This article was originally published in the February 2022 issue of Oregon Leaf.
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