The classic club sandwich is always a popular choice for lunch in Denver.
Although it has the word club in its name, the club sandwich is not exclusive and everyone is free to enjoy the delicious dish. It might be fair to say that it is the most popular sandwich in America. There are many variations on this classic, but traditionally it contains turkey, bacon, lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise inside toasted bread, with a third slice tucked in the middle.
Club sandwiches have been around for a very, very long time in one form or another. The oldest recipe for something called a club sandwich was published in 1897 in the Atlanta Constitution. It was called the Coogler Club Sandwich and contained ham, pickles, turkey, tongue and mustard. This original recipe called for just two slices of bread, not the typical three we know today. James Beard, the father of American cuisine himself, insisted in his 1972 book James Beard’s American Cookery that the sandwich started out as only two slices of toast and three slices is not authentic.
The most popular theory on the origin of the club sandwich says that it was created in 1894 at the exclusive Saratoga House Club in Saratoga Springs, New York. Another theory was written about in the 1916 book Salads, Sandwiches and Chafing Dish Recipes by Marion H. Neil. She wrote that the sandwich was created by some unknown man who made it at home late one night using what he found in his pantry and “ice chest,” which included chicken, bacon, and tomato. He later asked for the sandwich to be made at a club where he was a member, and it became known as the club sandwich.
Nowadays you’ll find any number of ingredients in a club sandwich, from avocado to lobster and foie gras. At Gunther Toody’s we make this lunchtime classic sandwich with turkey, ham, bacon, Swiss cheese, lettuce and tomato on three slices of whole grain bread. Why mess with perfection?