Food & Drink

The 12 Best Sandwich Shops in Memphis

Published On 06/15/2015 Published On 06/15/2015
Holly Whitfield/Thrillist
Fino's from the Hill
Holly Whitfield/Thrillist
Holly Whitfield/Thrillist
Holly Whitfield/Thrillist
HOLLY WHITFIELD/THRILLIST
Holly Whitfield/Thrillist
Flickr/Memphis CVB
Young Avenue Deli
Holly Whitfield/Thrillist
Trolley Stop Market
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1. Tamp & Tap 122 Gayoso Ave, Memphis, TN 38103 (Downtown)

Whether you're looking to get your coffee or beer buzz on, Tamp & Tap is your spot (check out their second location in East Memphis, too). They offer both caffeinated beverages and local craft beers -- plus a lunch menu for downtowners looking to grab a bite while getting some work done. Their Nutella brioche toast is guaranteed to help you through any project.

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2. Kwik Chek 2013 Madison Ave, Memphis, TN 38104 (Midtown)

You may not think twice about dining at a convenience store, but in the case of Midtown’s Kwik Chek, you’d be doing yourself a disservice. Tucked away in the back of the store, beyond the shelves of potato chips, lottery tickets, and energy drinks, is a deli counter serving up some of Memphis’ favorite lunches. On offer are Mediterranean- and Korean-style deli specialty items like sandwiches, gyros, falafel, and the famous bi bim bap rice. The signature rice dish is served with your choice of chicken, beef, or tofu, piled high with chopped cucumbers, carrots, and bean sprouts, topped with a fried egg, and drizzled with spicy Korean hot sauce. Try it in burger form -- same rice for the patty, same accoutrements, with the addition of cheese, and served on a bun.

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3. Porcellino's 711 W. Brookhaven Cr., Memphis, TN 38117 (East Memphis)

From Andy Ticer & Michael Hudman, Porcellino's manages to impress at every meal. Breakfast is marked by nitro coffee, meaty breakfast sandwiches, fresh pastries, and delights like the Dutch baby pancakes. Lunch has great sandwiches and salads, plus the entire breakfast menu. The real standout, however, is dinner. In addition to a menu full of one of a kind dishes, there are dim sum style carts that come around with mini daily specials. Not in the mood to sit and stay? Grab a cocktail and pick up a dinner to go from the butcher.

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4. The Second Line 2144 Monroe Ave, Memphis, TN 38104 (Midtown)

As the casual cousin of Chef Kelly English's Restaurant Iris, The Second Line offers up simple, authentic New Orleans fare: think juicy roast beef po' boys with bread delivered fresh from NOLA as well as heaping trays of fried seafood, crawfish pimento cheese fries, "fancy ass cole slaw," and Natchitoches meat pies, and herb-infused cocktails.

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5. Lunchbox Eats 288 S 4th St, Memphis, TN 38126 (Downtown)

Lunchbox Eats puts a modern twist on Southern American classics you're sure to appreciate, like its chicken n' waffle sandwich.

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6. Highland Super Submarine Sandwich Shop 3316 Summer Ave, Memphis, TN 38111 (Summer Avenue)

It's a debate that Memphis will have for eternity: hard bread or soft bread? Whichever you decide, the sandwiches at the cash-only Chinese Sub Shop (no one calls it by its real name) are phenomenal. And don't forget your free bag of chips!

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7. Vanelli's Deli 7873 Farmington Blvd, Germantown, TN 38138

Not exactly in Memphis, but it's worth the trip to Germantown for Vanelli's proper Italian deli style sandwiches. Try the Ami with pastrami, two kinds of salami, provolone, peppers and onions, plus lettuce, tomato, and Vanelli's special recipe Italian dressing.

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8. Young Avenue Deli 2119 Young Ave, Memphis, TN 38104 (Midtown)

Young Avenue Deli is one of the most popular live music venues in Memphis, not only for its expansive stage and large seating area, but also for its equally extensive food and drink selection. The menu of greasy goodness is divided into “Munchies,” “Specialties,” “’Dillas+Pizza,” and “Dessert,” and its highlights include award-winning French fries, beer battered artichoke hearts, and the Super Veggie sandwich, which comes bursting with roasted red peppers, artichoke hearts, romaine lettuce, sprouts, feta cheese, and black olives. And with over 100 beer options (30 of which are on tap), you won’t tire of Young Avenue anytime soon.

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9. Aldo's Pizza Pies 752 S Cooper St, Memphis, TN 38104 (Cooper Young)

Aldo’s is a gourmet pizza joint with two locations (one Downtown and one in Midtown). It's famous for its Trippy Truffle and vodka sauce, plus there are delicious sandwiches that can hold their own. Unlike its sister, this Copper Young location has a rooftop patio, the premiere spot to enjoy a slice and pint in Memphis.

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10. Trolley Stop Market 704 Madison Ave, Memphis, TN 38103 (Downtown)

Trolley Stop Market -- which sits adjacent to the Orleans trolley stop on Madison Ave., hence the name -- is part market, part restaurant, and part bar with a penchant for pies. Farmers-turned-restaurant owners Keith and Jill Forrester make pizza crusts from scratch, and source ingredients for toppings from nearby Whitton Farms, among other farms, where they grow their own produce and herbs. Go for the Margherita pie, topped with just-plucked tomatoes, chunks of Mozzarella, and freshly picked basil, and stay for the various artisanal goods on offer: crafts, sauces, breads, jams, eggs, and the like.

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11. Fino's from the Hill 1853 Madison Ave, Memphis, TN 38104 (Midtown)

This Midtown mainstay has the feel of a classic New York or Chicago deli, offering hard-to-find pantry goods and Italian-style sandwiches that are as gratuitous in portion as they are easy on the wallet. The menu includes old favorites like Philly cheesesteaks and turkey clubs, but it's the Italian options -- the mortadella- and salami-obsessed "Acquisto" and warm, provolone-laden "Agosti" -- that prove flavorsome standouts. Combined with the solid pizza slices and antipasta sides, Fino's is a no-brainer if you're looking for lunch on a budget. Just be sure to save room for dessert, because the homemade cannolis are not to miss.

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