When Scott Jennings, founder of Cheba Hut Toasted Subs, opened his first sub store in Tempe, Ariz., he was going for “a cool place to work,” he said.
That was in 1998. The concept, touted as a cure for the munchies, has since expanded beyond Arizona, with locations in California, Oregon, New Mexico, Nevada, Wisconsin and Colorado. The 12th shop in Colorado and the first in Colorado Springs opened Aug. 22 at 3171 N. Chestnut St.
What’s the key to Jennings’ success?
“I’m a foodie and didn’t want to be mainstream,” he said. “It was 1998 and I wanted to lighten up people’s views and stress freedom of speech. Obviously, I smoked weed and created a menu using names based on the marijuana culture. We don’t sell any THC chemical. Just the best sandwiches on the planet.”
Bread is the basis for the sandwiches combined with freshly made sauces, high quality meats and fresh ingredients.
“Bread is the Holy Grail,” he said. “If it’s more than two hours old it’s dead and we use it for something else. We have our baguette dough made by Vie de France in Denver.”
Each Cheba Hut has a unique personality expressed in huge, colorful wall murals and secret stash menus.
“Since this is our 12th store in Colorado and it’s near Garden of the Gods, our artist went with 12 mythological gods,” Jennings said. “Each store has a couple of sandwiches they have created for the secret stash. One offered here is the Fillmore Fire, which is a spicy chicken invention.”
In addition to sandwiches, there are salads and munchies including a Rice Krispy bar. There’s a full bar, because,