Maine's Italian sandwich, sometimes referred to as the Maine Italian sandwich,[1] is an American submarine sandwich in Italian-American cuisine prepared on a long bread roll or bun with meats, cheese and various vegetables.[2] The Maine Italian sandwich was supposedly invented in Portland, Maine.


In Maine, the traditional Italian sandwich is prepared using a long bread roll or bun with meats such as ham along with American or provolone cheese, tomato, onion, green bell pepper, Greek olives, olive oil or salad oil, salt and cracked black pepper. Ham is the default meat unless another is specified, so ordering a "Ham Italian" is considered redundant.[3][4][5] The sandwich is often cut in half to make it easier to handle.[3][6]


Giovanni Amato, a grocer in Portland, Maine claims to have invented the "Italian sandwich".[3][4] While selling his bread on his street cart, Amato received requests from dockworkers to slice his long bread rolls and add sliced meat, cheese and vegetables to them.[3][2] Amato later opened a sandwich shop named Amato's, and today the sandwich continues to be prepared by Amato's sandwich shops.[2][5] The Amato's version is traditionally prepared using fresh-baked bread, ham, American cheese, slices of tomato, onions, green pepper and sour pickle, Kalamata olives and salad oil.[5]

See also


  1. ^ "Eat and Run: Anania's, South Portland". The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram. September 27, 2012. Retrieved May 27, 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Stern, J.; Stern, M. (2009). 500 Things to Eat Before It's Too Late: And the Very Best Places to Eat Them. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 58. ISBN 978-0-547-05907-5. Retrieved May 27, 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d Stern, J.; Stern, M. (2007). Roadfood Sandwiches: Recipes and Lore from Our Favorite Shops Coast to Coast. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 186. ISBN 978-0-547-34635-9. Retrieved May 27, 2016.
  4. ^ a b Smith, A.; Kraig, B. (2013). The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America (2d ed.). OUP USA. p. 351. ISBN 978-0-19-973496-2. Retrieved May 27, 2016.
  5. ^ a b c Thorne, J.; Thorne, M.L. (2008). Mouth Wide Open: A Cook and His Appetite. Farrar, Straus and Giroux. p. pt106–107. ISBN 978-1-4668-0646-7. Retrieved May 27, 2016.
  6. ^ Gagne, T. (2011). New England Recipes. Kids Can Cook. Mitchell Lane Publishers, Incorporated. p. 18. ISBN 978-1-61228-161-2. Retrieved May 27, 2016.

Further reading