July is ending, and August is around the corner. As the summer months start peaking and waning, it’s time to celebrate the weather before it leaves. And that means picnics and sandwiches outdoors! I am going to dedicate August to sandwiches – this means Kyung and I will be trotting around locally to the different sandwich hotspots to try our hand at finding the best sandwiches. I have to say though, so far it’s been very hard for us to find a place better than Ike’s – located at 16th and Sanchez in SF, it’s a spot that attracts both out of towners and locals alike. On Yelp this place has 1000 reviews with an average of 4.5 stars – how many other places in SF, both pricey and inexpensive, can boast such fervor? Not even French Laundry, though it’s a restaurant after my own heart, can claim such a thing.
According to Ike’s website this shop opened in 2007. And yet, look at the line of people waiting after the lunchtime rush today at 2 pm – this place is clearly a winner!
After waiting in line for 20 minutes and then waiting another 20 minutes for the sandwiches to be done, we giggled and ran back to the car to enjoy our long awaited goodies. Normally we perch at the haphazard arrangement of chairs and tables outside the tiny store that can’t hold more than three people in line at once but the garbage cans outside smelled so bad and were attracting lots of swirling flies in the heat. Behold our sandwiches
The left two halves were from my sandwich – I ordered the Disco Disco, which is a veggie sandwich that comes with hummus, sprouts, and cucumber. At least, it’s supposed to come with sprouts. Today they ran out of sprouts, so I settled for a sproutless sandwich. All sandwiches come with dirty sauce (which is their special secret ingredient and is a garlic aioli that’s baked into the bread and also served slathered on the bread), mayo, lettuce, tomatoes, banana peppers, onions, and pickles. I declined the dirty sauce and mayo, since I’m not usually a sauce fiend. I ordered my sandwich on sourdough, which is freshly baked and recommended as a good pair with the hummus. My sandwich was crunchy on the outside, crispy, savory, and hummus wonderful on the inside. I wouldn’t say Ike’s sandwiches are the healthiest, but I felt like I just ate something incredibly healthy and good for the mind/body.
The third half on the right is from Kyung’s sandwich – he ordered the MILF – which is chicken breast, Frank’s Red Hot Sauce, stuffed jalapeno poppers (yes, the deep fried kind), and ranch. It was a combination of two flavors he likes – chicken wings and poppers, so I suggested he try it. This sandwich was messy and got everywhere but was so junky, slightly spicy, tangy, and artery clogging that it was worth the mess.
We didn’t eat them right away after our sandwiches because we were stuffed to the brim, but they were waiting for us…until now. I’m eating the blue raspberry one as I type.
This is now our third time to visit Ike’s, and it’s our third time in the last three weeks! There are so many sandwiches to try – we’ve also tried the Pride of Castro (my personal favorite of all three I’ve tried), the SF/Hollywood Cheesesteak, and the Hot Date. Amazing how such a find has transformed our sandwich lives. But, there has to be other sandwich places out there equally as good. Onward!