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  oil. One person called for her dad’s 80th birthday. She said that all he wanted for his birthday was a Sam’s Italian. We’ve heard it all!” Sam’s oil is even featured in a Taste of Maine box, where people can order a variety of characteristically Maine products online, and they’ve been shipped around the globe.
According to Robin, true Sam’s customers usually order their Triple Italian, which adds capicola and genoa salami to the traditional ingredients, but they’ll make Italians for any taste, and have coolers chock-full of fresh ingredients to create any version you desire. Being the purest that I am, I ordered the original Italian, with the traditional ingredients. The only adaptations to the 1900 recipe are provo- lone cheese, regular black olives, and dill pickles. The adapted combination brings down the acidity a bit, producing a destinct new variation.
From Italy, With Love
In the southernmost tip of Maine’s west coast, you’ll have to belly up to one of the most authentic Italians to be found at Corsetti’s, located on the Gray Road in Windham. Donato Corsetti moved to the U.S. when he was just 11 years old from Arce, Italy, after growing up in a tiny shack that had no electricity or running water.
He made the most of his opportunities once here, and opened several Italian food shops by the mid-1970s.
Order an Italian Sandwich at Corsetti’s in Windham and you will get the original recipe invented 120 years ago.
Giovan Corsetti has Italian sandwich-making in his genes. He is co-owner of the popular Corsetti’s in Windham, founded by his father Donato in 1978.
He featured his popular Italians, made with sour pickles, Greek olives, and olive oil blend. There was a time when the University of Southern Maine would place an order for 1,000 Italians for their annual homecoming day that had to be delivered all at the same time! That was at a time when Donato said all veggies were cut individually, for each sandwich; there was a station for each and every ingredient. Dontato was the “tomato guy.” There was also a “green pepper guy,” an “onion guy,” a “pickle guy,” right on down the line. They’d start at midnight and would slice, build, and roll up sandwiches all night in order to make
that 10 a.m. deadline. By the end of the marathon, Donato says he wouldn’t be able to feel his fingers, and his hands would be raw for days from the acidic tomato juice. Imagine the poor “onion guy!” With true dedication, they happily filled that huge order year after year, and most likely seeded countless new generations of Italian sandwich enthusiasts.
In 2015, Donato’s children took over ownership of the remaining Windham location. Giovan Corsetti and his sister, Dimitra, work together as a team to manage the business, and “Gio” says they put out at least 100 Italians a day in the summer. Most are the traditional recipe, so of course, being my favorite, that’s what I tried. I have to say, it was beyond amazing. The tart- ness from the sour pickles and zest of the Greek olives

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