Let’s Get (Between) This Bread: The Rise of the Memphis Sandwich Clique

Food is the great equalizer, so they say. But cliques are the opposite of that – often exclusively curated to include only like-minded individuals. That’s where the newly-popular Facebook group Memphis Sandwich Clique comes into the picture. Perhaps not as exclusive as your average clique, this public group currently boasts over 3,400 members from the Memphis area all coming together to share their love of the genre of food we call sandwiches.

Be that as it may, even the best laid plans of both muffalettas and men often go aw-rye.

The rules are relatively simple.

  1. Local Sandwiches Only – if it’s not from Memphis, it’s not for the Clique
  2. Invite Your Friends – grow the group by proselytizing unsuspecting friends and family
  3. No Fast Food – “we all know it’s not picture worthy”
  4. Post Pics & Give Good Descriptions – after all, you’re tying to showcase the delicious
  5. No Hot Dogs/Tacos/Wraps¬†– here the moderators take a somewhat controversial stance about what is and isn’t a sandwich
  6. No Spam¬†– and, no, they don’t mean the canned meat

Predictably, rule #5 has caused some infighting. At the time of writing this article, the group’s discussion feed hosts at least four posts about hot dogs: one post showcasing a frank, a poll begging the debate of the entree’s sandwich status, and two posts about the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council’s ruling on the matter. It’s a contentious issue within the community to say the least. Some folks have a looser definition for what ingredients are needed. Others remain staunch purists. Both have internally inconsistent rules regarding bread.

The rigorous debate about hot dogs’ sandwich status. Bottom Right: the voice of reason.

Grilled cheeses also come under fire, usually because someone is upset that there’s an ingredient other than cheese. There’s a legendary reddit rant that claims anything more than cheese constitutes a melt, a sentiment echoed by some within the group.

However, they all seem to agree on one thing: you can find some seriously top-shelf sandwiches in the Bluff City. Sam’s Deli seems to reign supreme as the crowd favorite, finding a mention in nearly every other post. Plenty of other establishments see endless praise as well, but the list would be too cumbersome. If you want to see for yourself who has all the delicious “sammies” in town… you’ll just have to brave the storm and join the Clique yourself.

(I hear they’re making T-shirts)

Happy ‘wiching!