Which Came First? The Mother Clucker or The Delicious Sandwich?
On the 10th anniversary of the most delicious sandwich ever assembled in Tyler, TX, let's take a moment and celebrate Stanley's Famous Pit BBQ's most improbable and famous concoction.
Hard to believe it's been 10 years since the good folks at Stanley's, through what must have been divine inspiration, developed The Mother Clucker -- to this day the only food I've ever posted on Instagram. See:
If you've given it even a passing thought over the past decade, in my mind everyone has, it's reasonable to assume that the sandwich inspired the legendary name. As it turns out, in this case, it was the other way around.
A sandwich this perfect can only be inspired by the perfect name.
That's right. The name came first, it's what served as the foundation for the sandwich, not the other way around. Kinda like a songwriter coming up with a hook first. Co-creator and Stanley's Famous Pit BBQ owner, Nick Pencis recounted the story of it's inception.
"I was discussing developing something new with Pit Masters Jonathan Shaw and Jordan Jackson," says Pencis. "I told them I wanted to develop a chicken sandwich and call it the “Mother Clucker."' That's when his fellow creators stepped in, "Shaw put together the seasoning blend and Jordan developed the sauce and how it was all put together."
And a star was born.
What's in a Mother Clucker? Jalapeño cheese sourdough, smoked chicken thigh, fried egg, cheddar cheese, spicy barbecue mayo. Go Cadillac Style for the candied bacon, and guacamole, that's what I do.
In 2014 it was named the No. 1 sandwich in the entire state by Texas Monthly:
This sandwich just sounds ridiculous, but it’s nothing short of ridiculously good. The smoked chicken thigh will make you rethink using a chicken breast on a sandwich ever again. It’s perfectly moist, tender, and smoky. If the BBQ mayo doesn’t enrich it enough, the yolk will once it’s broken. Just because it has egg and bacon, don’t relegate it just to breakfast. Texas’s best barbecue sandwich should be enjoyed all day long.
As it turns out the sandwich was constructed in an attempt to save some money. You know the old saying, right? "Rising beef prices always lead to rising levels of ingenuity and inventiveness in sandwiches." or something like that.
Well, Pencis told me that at the time they were interested in something new and fun, "and an alternative to brisket, which was climbing in price." Thank God for rising brisket prices in '13.
Being a sandwich lover and longtime resident of Tyler it’s been remarkable witnessing its rise to fame across Texas. Ten years later the sandwich is still going strong and will forever be cemented in Texas history alongside Dr Pepper, Whataburger, and H-E-B.
Go enjoy one today.