The United States was knocked out of the World Cup by Belgium, but our nation marches on in the World Cup of Sandwiches! Last week, we asked you to vote on sandwich matchups based on the first knockout round of the soccer tournament, and we're down to the last eight. (All results are percentages.)
Germany vs. France
Döner: Defeated chermoula sandwich (Algeria) 75:25. The lingering taste of your study abroad semester is the döner kebab, a Turkish innovation that is, according to Doner Bistro, "the No. 1 hand food in Germany." The spiced slices of beef or chicken are served in a flatbread pocket with lettuce, tomato, cucumber and tzatziki.
Croque Monsieur: Defeated scrambled egg baguette (Nigeria) 73:27. So decadent is France's iconic ham-and-cheese sandwich that nobody dares to imitate its innovative cheese-atop-bread design. Available at French bistros, bakeries and cafes everywhere.
Uruguay vs. Chile
Chivito: Defeated the arepa (Colombia) 77:23. The chivito is the national sandwich of Uruguay, and Fast Gourmet's version is so imposing -- steak, ham, bacon, cheese, egg and a bunch of other savory stuff -- Luis Suarez couldn't even bite all the way through it in one attempt.
Lomito: Defeated the Maracanã (Brazil) 88:12. Sliced roast pork on a bun is a popular dish throughout South America. The Chilean-inspired version at Compass Rose adds creamy avocado and spicy 'nduja sausage to the sturdy classic.
USA vs. Argentina
The Bobbie: Defeated Wafelburger (Belgium) 70:30. What's more American than Thanksgiving? A Thanksgiving sandwich approved by Vice President Biden. The signature item at Capriotti's, the Veep's favorite lunch spot, combines turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing and mayo on a roll.
Choripán: Defeated the Zurich (Switzerland) 64:36. The humble choripán -- a portmanteau of the sandwich's traditional ingredients, chorizo and pan, or bread -- is a typical South American sausage sandwich. But at Del Campo, chef Victor Albisu takes it up a notch, adding pulled pork and tangy greens.
Greece vs. Mexico
Spring lamb: Defeated the Costa Rica hot dog 80:20. Greece qualified for the World Cup's knockout round by the slimmest of margins. We're glad, because it offers us a chance to write about the fancy gyro at G Sandwich. The roasted lamb comes from Isabella's neighboring Kapnos, and it's topped with tzatziki, romaine, pickled onion and a bunch of zesty dill.
Torta: Defeated Amsterdam Falafelshop (Netherlands) 60:40. Imagine your ideal taco, replace the corn tortilla with a piece of pillowy bread, and you've got yourself a torta. Taco Bamba's Torta Bamba, below, should almost certainly be banned from the World Cup of Sandwiches, for it is a torta on steroids:ham, hot dogs, carne asada, chorizo, Oaxaca cheese, breaded chicken and beef milanesa fill the bread. We named it the most intimidating sandwich of 2013.