On this day, 300 years ago, a hero was born.
John Montagu was born to Edward Montagu, Viscount Hinchingbrooke. Montagu would become a British statesman, Postmaster General, First Lord of Admiralty and Secretary of State for the Northern Department and Fourth Earl of Sandwich.
Fortunately, for the sake of world history, Montagu had a vice or two. He was a conversant gambler, according to Wikipedia, and would sit at the gambling table for hours on end, beckoning the servants to bring him slices meat between slices of bread. The original sandwich was a piece of salt beef between two slices of toasted bread.
We've come a long way from the Earl's primitive sandwich. And in Saline, we're especially thankful. We asked local restaurants to tell us about their favorite sandwich.
Beef and Cheddar
The Cheese Shop of Saline
98 N. Ann Arbor St.
Applegate Roast Beef (no hormones, no antibiotics and humanely raised animals), Grafton 1 year Vermont Cheddar, tomato, spring greens and our horseradish mayonnaise on a locally made Onion Roll from Matty J's bakery.
"Caution," says owner John Loomis. "I'm very fond of messy sandwiches, so two napkins are a necessity."
The Salt Springs Raging Mammoth
Salt Springs Brewery
117 S. Ann Arbor St.
Best sandwich on their menu, says co-owner Ron Schofield. And probably the best sandwich name in Michigan.
The Salt Springs Raging Mammoth is house smoked chicken breast with chevre (goat cheese a French fur trader would love), house-made red jalapeno jam, and applewood smoked bacon - served a toasted challah bun from Avalon Breads.
Ham and Gruyere
Matty J's Bakery and Cafe
972 E Michigan Ave.
Says owner Shawna Sloane, "Our best sandwich is the Ham and Gruyere. It’s been our top seller ever since we opened. The reasons it’s so good are because we use high quality fresh ingredients, a nice hearty bread, and because it is a wonderful combination of flavors."
101 S. Ann Arbor St.
The most popular sandwich at Saline's downtown cafe is the Baja Club. It's served on toasted French bread, with turkey, bacon, peper, jack cheese, lettuce, tomato, and Chipotle mayo on both slices of bread. It's served with a pickle spear and your choice of side: coleslaw, cottage cheese, chips, popcorn, applesauce or fresh fruit.
Mancino's Pizza & Grinders
1323 E. Michigan Ave.
Mancino's is known for their huge, filling grinders. But the Italian is their house specialty. Their toasted grinder bread is loaded with ham, sausage, salami, mushrooms, onions, green peppers, cheese, lettuce, tomato and mayo.
John Montagu may have been the Fourth Earl of Sandwich. But's he's number one in our books!