Zagat Names Rhode Island’s ‘Official’ Sandwich
Friday, August 30, 2013
In honor of August being national sandwich month, Zagat set out to name one classic sandwich for every state in the union, and for Rhode Island, the honor fell squarely on the humble, but never bland, grinder.
Of course, the Zagat editors felt it necessary to interpret the moniker. "In case you were confused, a grinder is the same as a hoagie, or a hero, or a submarine sandwich," they say. "Basically, it’s a long, soft white roll stuffed with thinly sliced meat, lettuce, tomatoes and condiments. An Italian grinder traditionally consists of hot capicola, pepperoni, genoa salami, provolone cheese, iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, mayonnaise and Italian dressing."
Zagat gives a special grinder shout-out to Hudson Street Deli in Providence, "where they make their grinders in two sizes, large or extra large."
What sandwiches were crowned the state special in New England's other 5 states?
Connecticut: Connecticut-Style Hot Lobster Roll
"While many consider the cold, mayonnaise-driven Maine lobster roll to be the quintessential version of the sandwich, the first lobster roll was actually a hot, buttered one served at a restaurant called Perry’s in Milford, Connecticut, in the 1920s," according to Zagat, sending the curious (and hungry) to Abbott’s Lobster in the Rough in Noank. "They take the simplicity of the Connecticut-style hot lobster roll and turn it into an art form."
Maine: Lobster Roll
This might go without saying. What else could Maine's sandwich be? Zagat likes Red’s Eats in Wiscasset, Maine, where its location "literally steps from the ocean" guarantees truly fresh lobster.
Massachusetts: The Fluffernutter
Anyone who's grown up in the Bay State is nodding at this choice. "The fluffernutter is an unofficial state sandwich," according to Zagat, adding that "the delectable marshmallow fluff" was invented in Somerville, Massachusetts, in 1917. "Fluff is celebrated to this day with a Fluff Festival in Somerville," according to Zagat. "Your best bet is to snag one at the September festival (or just make one yourself)."
New Hampshire: Beer-Battered Fish Sandwich
Zagat bestowed the honor on this specialty sandwich with an interesting piece of reasoning. "Given that so much delicious craft beer comes out the state, as well as its proximity to fresh seafood, it would have to be beer-battered fish on a roll." For a great example, the guide gurus recommend Nadeau’s Subs in Manchester "where the Nadeau family has been serving this tender fried fish on toasted potato rolls since 1969, much to the delight of locals and tourists alike."
You'll find this sandwich in most delis statewide, says Zagat, which is how the Vermonter gets the nod. The "sweet-and-savory sandwich" typically includes either turkey or ham (sometimes both), sharp Vermont cheddar cheese, thinly-sliced green apples and honey mustard, although there are many different variations, according to Zagat. Look for a classic example at Noonie Deli, which serves up the classic (minus the turkey).
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