A Sandwich Fit for a King

by Amanda Falk / 121 days ago / Comments
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It’s no secret that Elvis Presley had a royal appetite for greasy, Southern food. In what is perhaps the most legendary story about his indulgent habits, rumor has it that the King once took his private jet and a few friends from Graceland to Denver to cure a late night craving for a Fool’s Gold Sandwich at the now defunct Colorado Mine Company.

The Fool’s Gold sandwich featured a loaf of hollowed-out French bread, baked with margarine until browned, then topped with a full jar of peanut butter, a jar of grape jelly, and one pound of crispy bacon…clocking in at over 8,000 calories! While one sandwich cost $49.95 in the mid-70s (over $200 in today’s currency!) and was intended to feed multiple people, Elvis and his friends ordered 22 sandwiches and then spent hours enjoying their meal alongside cases of champagne and Perrier. It is estimated that the meal cost Elvis over $3,000...but the round trip flight alone cost over $16,000!

Despite its unusual mix of ingredients, the Fool’s Gold sandwich became widely popular, and in many parts of the country, was aptly renamed ‘The Elvis’. Restaurants in Tennessee have spent years recreating this sweet and salty treat, as well as creating some unique variations as a tribute to the King. Read on for a few of the best versions of the dish that can be found in both Memphis and Nashville.

Memphis

  • Not too far from Graceland sits Memphis’ oldest diner, The Arcade. The café adorns their walls with pictures from Elvis’ life and knows how to fry up a peanut butter & banana sandwich almost as good as Mom did. To ensure you get the full Elvis experience, make sure to request bacon!
  • While every dish at Marlowe’s Ribs & Restaurant is inspired by Elvis and his love for great home-style cooking, it’s their dessert-version of Elvis’ favorite sandwich that will catch your attention. Here, they top a donut with vanilla ice cream, peanut butter, bananas, and whipped cream. Pro tip – call ahead to the restaurant to receive a free ride to the restaurant in a pink limousine!

Nashville

  • If you’re wanting to ease into the amalgam that makes up the Elvis sandwich, stop by The Pied Piper Creamery in East Nashville. This artisan ice cream joint takes honey and banana custard, and blends in rich peanut butter to create what they call ‘Eat Your Heart Out, Elvis’. The result is not only delicious… it’s a refreshing treat during any time of year.
  • Locals’ favorite speakeasy The Patterson House gives ‘The Elvis’ a unique spin…in the form of a panini! Peanut butter acts as the perfect agent to bind together the banana and bacon, creating what is probably the neatest way to eat the treat. To top off the experience, try this one with a Patterson House’s signature Bacon Old Fashioned to bring out the salty flavor.
  • If you’re looking for something a bit more hearty, try Flipside in the 12th South borough. Known for their extensive menu of chicken dishes (18 to be exact), the ‘Elvis Lives’ comes with their signature breaded Jacks’ Best Chicken smothered in – you guessed it – peanut butter, banana, bacon, and honey.
  • Whether you find yourself in Germantown or Murfreesboro, stop by Jack Brown’s Beer and Burger joint to try the Elvis burger…appropriately topped with peanut butter, mayonnaise, smoked bacon, and cheese. While the addition of hamburger, cheese, and mayo do mix up the original recipe, there’s no doubt the King himself would try this one!
  • East Nashville gem Sweet 16th Bakery offers two options for Elvis lovers: the Elvis cake and the Velvet Elvis. The Elvis (also available in cupcake form!) is a delectable two-layer banana cake with peanut butter cream and topped with cream cheese frosting. The Velvet Elvis takes a different spin with layers of red velvet and chocolate cakes separated with rich peanut butter cream and topped with lots of cream cheese frosting.
  • Bobbie’s Dairy Dip, a 50s style diner in West Nashville, features my favorite version of ‘The Elvis’. Here, the Memphis Mafia swirls together vanilla ice cream, malt, banana, peanut butter, and bacon to create a delicious milkshake with just the right amount of salty undertones to make you say cheers to Elvis!

 

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About Amanda Falk

Amanda Falk Journalist

In 2012, I stumbled into the music business after a career in public relations and event planning and quickly decided that I'd never go back. For the sake of full disclosure, I can’t sing, I couldn’t play anything on an instrument if my life depended on it, and the only songs I write are the ones I make up during traffic jams. In fact, the only musical talent I have involves a knack for remembering random pop culture facts (hence why I’m a hot commodity at trivia nights). However, when you combine that with my intense curiosity and passion for all things music, you get a gal who is proud to say she knows quite a lot about the Nashville entertainment scene. I love sharing my experiences in this city with others, and hopefully, I'll inspire people to fall in love with Nashville as quickly as I did.