Great new sandwich shop on The Alameda

Ike's Love and Sandwiches

I was away from my office at lunchtime the other day, so I decided do something different for lunch. I wanted to see if anything new had moved in to the old Mission City Coffee location, and if not I thought I’d get some tacos at the Chalateco Mexican/Salvadoran place near there. What I found instead was a great new sandwich shop.

Ike’s Love & Sandwiches is part of a small local chain, and located on The Alameda at Chapman Ct in Santa Clara (the shop opened last month, and the Ike’s web page still doesn’t list it as a location). It’s right near where El Camino splits off from The Alameda and The Alameda becomes a tiny little spur leading to the “SCU” Safeway.

Everything about the place shows incredible enthusiasm. The walls are painted in bright “flower-power” colors and decorated with retro school lunch boxes from the 1970’s and ’80’s. There’s loud music playing and the place is crowded with customers, mostly college-age, even when I was there at 1 pm on a rainy day. The clerks are incredibly friendly and helpful, not just trying to get through their shifts so they can spend their paychecks on beer and textbooks.

The sandwiches are mostly named for local celebrities and landmarks. The “Andrew Luck” is halal chicken, bacon, garlic & herb sauce, and cheddar cheese, for example, and the “Steve Jobs” is breaded egglplant, ranch dressing, green pesto, and provolone. There’s a huge selection of vegetarian sandwiches. All sandwiches are served hot (unless you want it cold).

I got the “Patrick Marleau”. Roast beef, bacon, jack cheese, horseradish sauce, and sriracha. I thought about asking for it with no sriracha to get something less risky, but then figured, they must have tried it and think it’s good, so why not go for it? It was the right decision. The horseradish dominates the flavor of the sauce, but the sriracha adds just a note of something different to a classic combination.

Try this place now, and go early or late, because once the whole town catches on to it, it’s going to be one of those places where the line runs out the door.

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