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POSTED 5:47 AM, OCTOBER 21, 2016, BY , UPDATED AT 08:32AM, OCTOBER 21, 2016

HAMDEN — If there is a key to the perfect sandwich, Ray George has it, as he unlocks pure goodness at his Hamden staple, Ray and Mike’s Deli.

From the award-winning steak and cheese grinders to “The Irresistible,” which adds buffalo chicken to his signature steak and cheese. These imaginative hoagies are packed with flavor and have been filling bellies since 1997.

“We started years ago, never thinking it would be this popular, but we have some great customers and our staff is second to none and they deliver fantastic food,” said George.

The creative menu serves up everything from “The Cluckin’ Russian” to the “Mac Daddy,” complete with BBQ pork, mac and cheese, cheddar and bacon to fresh cold cut subs giving new meaning to the term, homemade.

“We cook and make our turkey breast and roast beef here,” said George. “This has allowed us to continue the consistency all these years.”

Everyday for the last 19 years, Ray and Mike’s Deli has been open, boasting about being the only local deli open every day of the year, on all holidays and even during the snowstorms. It’s a favorite among Quinnipiac University students who return year after year for  their favorites.

“It’s a work ethic my parents instilled in me at an early age,” said George. “We are known for being open all the time, which our customers just love.”