The Sailor Sandwich: A Richmond, Virginia Original

Sailor Sandwich

5 from 1 reviews

This sandwich is a Richmond, VA favorite, piled high with pastrami, knockwurst and Swiss cheese on rye bread.


  • 2 slices rye bread
  • unsalted butter
  • 4 oz pastrami (or more if you want a heartier sandwich!)
  • 1 knockwurst
  • 2 slices Swiss cheese
  • Brown Deli Mustard


  1. Start by buttering two slices of the rye bread on one side. Flip the slice over and smear mustard on one slice. Set aside.
  2. Split the knockwurst in half, but don’t cut all the way though, so that it folds open like a book. It’s going to lay flat on the sandwich so it doesn’t roll off.
  3. Set the griddle over medium heat and grill the flat side of the knockwurst until browned.  Then flip and grill the other side until the casing blisters slightly. Remove from griddle and set aside.
  4. Place pile of pastrami on griddle over medium-high heat and grill first side for about a minute, until slightly browned. This will warm up the bottom to help in melting the cheese.
  5. Flip the pastrami over and place two slices of the cheese on top. Cover with another frying pan or tent with foil for about a minute. The trapped moisture will steam melt the cheese.
  6. Reduce heat to medium.  Assemble the sandwich, placing the pastrami and cheese on the first slice of bread and then topping it with the grilled knockwurst.
  7. Lift assembled sandwich onto griddle and grill until bread is toasted and golden brown, 1-2 minutes.
  8. Flip sandwich and repeat on opposite side until golden brown.
  9. Remove and slice sandwich in half. Serve with kettle potato chips.


*We recommend using a pan or a griddle with a low rim to make it easier to flip the sandwich.

Keywords: sandwich, pastrami, knockwurst, Sailor sandwich, deli