In case you're unfamiliar, that means cult favorite Bay Area sandwich shop Ike's Place, known for inventive sandwich names that match equally inventive ingredient combinations, will be opening an outpost in downtown Palo Alto this summer.
The #63, or the "Herbert Hoover" at Ike's Place features ham, bacon, American cheese, mozzarella sticks, lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles, banana peppers and a double heaping of Ike's "dirty sauce." Photo by Veronica Weber/Palo Alto Weekly.
Owner Ike Shehadeh confirmed Saturday (after posting the news to social media) that he's taken over the lease of 401 Lytton Ave., the former home of John's Cafe. The cafe closed this January after three years of operation.
"I'm really pumped to be back in Palo Alto," Shehadeh said, referencing his exit from a location on the Stanford University campus last year. Since 2009, he had run a popular outpost of Ike's out of Stanford's Jen-Hsun Huang Engineering Center, but lost a bid to re-up on his contract in April 2014, despite a petition to keep Ike's on campus that gained more than 1,000 signatures.
Shehadeh said he's required to make some American with Disabilities Act (ADA) upgrades to the Lytton Avenue space, but has already submitted plans to the city and hopes to be open in August.
The menus at the almost 15 Ike's Place locations are "95 percent the same," he said, so expect to see all of the classics, but each location does take on some of the local charm. There will be some "secret" and Palo Alto and/or Stanford-specific sandwiches, though Shehadeh hasn't determined what they'll be yet.
"Also, I may test out 'Ike's Pizza,'" he said. He's been wanting to open up a pizza place but hasn't yet served any of his creations publicly. He's been developing his own pizza sauce, and at least one combination would be a pizza version of the "Menage A Trois" sandwich, which comes with BBQ sauce, cheddar cheese, Halal chicken, honey mustard, pepper jack, honey and Swiss cheese.
"It's not only a great sandwich, but a great pizza," Shehadeh said.
Stay tuned for updates on an official opening date. Get excited by reading our 2011 review of the Stanford location: For the love of sandwiches.