Alright E’villains, we can all exhale. As previously reported what seemed like years ago, the Emeryville Ike’s Sandwiches will finally be opening on the corner retail unit of the Parc on Powell Development on Hollis & Powell. The Grand Opening is expected to occur Monday February 29th but they intend to soft-open for a few shifts prior to test their kitchen processes and get employees up to speed.
“Emeryville is a good fit for us” noted founder Ike Shehadeh through a phone interview who personally chose the location after being contacted by the landlord and being offered incentives. “Everywhere we’ve opened in the East Bay has shown us a lot of love and we feel there’s room for more.” Ike opened his first location in San Francisco back in 2007 and has expanded his brand as far as Washington D.C. in less than a decade.
Sandwiches like the Emeryville exclusive “Crazy Stupid Love” shown above are served on their famous Dutch Crunch with Ike’s secret dirty sauce and trademark caramel apple pops.
Ike’s are notorious for localizing their menu and providing unique options. The Emeryville menu includes two exclusives including the “Toy Story 4” (Veggie Bacon, Sweet Ranch & Jack) and the “Crazy Stupid Love” (Chicken Fried Steak, Ike’s Sweet Ranch, Swiss). No word on an “E’ville Eye” Sandwich ;). They also offer in the neighborhood of 500 “off the menu” options creating a near infinite amount of customization opportunities.
The leasing company for Parc on Powell has made a commitment to bringing in unique, locally serving retail. These efforts have been hampered by a City Government with a reputation of not supporting small business and created an unpredictable business climate. Ike’s thankfully signed their lease prior to Council’s announcement of their intent to implement their highest-in-the-nation minimum wage increase. Ike’s is considered a retail anchor and one that is a draw for other neighborhood businesses. So far this has not materialized for the Parc on Powell development besides the signing of Bay Bridge Optometry. The remaining lots remain empty and at least three pending deals have reportedly collapsed since the MWO’s adoption.
If there’s any small business that can absorb the current challenging business climate in our city, it’s Ike’s. Ike’s will reportedly keep prices consistent with other East Bay locations, but will implement an optional surcharge on every transaction to offset Emeryville’s added labor cost.
Another deterrent that some E’ville Eye commenters have noted is the lack of parking in the area. Something Ike’s is working on with property management who are expected to provide a handful of spots in their lot to the general public. When/If the retail fills out, there could be as many as forty spots available.
Ike’s is expanding rapidly and is also opening a Berkeley location and second Oakland location in Rockridge. Ike’s is also testing out other food concepts including Ike Burger (opening in Chico) and even Pizza (testing in Arizona). The Emeryville Ike’s will be the fifteenth location in the bay with more on the way. “I’m really grateful to the East Bay for all the support they’ve given us over the last four years” added Ike.
10:30 a.m.-7 p.m. daily