In many ways, the sandwich is the perfect food. It's a complete, handheld meal in an edible container. Think of the simple and satisfying peanut butter and jelly—main course and dessert all in one—or the well-calibrated balance of cold cuts, spicy pickles, and fresh cilantro in a Vietnamese banh mi. Many sandwiches are portable, but others, like Chicago's gravy-drenched Italian beef, demand to be eaten on the spot. They integrate ingredients from every corner of the planet in a form that is universally familiar and endlessly variable. Anybody can make one, but the best of them display real finesse and creativity. After years of eating them on the go, we're ready to pause and give sandwiches our undivided attention.