Ike's Place: Health Care or Chips?

Aug 26 at 11am

Ike’s Place, the Bay Area chain of 13 sandwich shops with a cult following and some cryptically named subs, is in a real pickle. The rising cost of doing business in San Francisco – which is to say, providing health care – is forcing proprietor Ike Shehadeh to decide between adding a Healthy SF surcharge to his prices or abandoning the free chips you get with every Jessica Rabbit, Pastrami-Charmed Life, and Vegan Bud Bundy.

As Shehadeh put it on Facebook, “I started giving out chips years ago because I care very much about those that supported Ike’s when there was 1 shop and yet, SF keeps making it more expensive than ever to sell sandwiches in. I’m sick of raising my prices.” So he’s putting it to a vote. (This only affects the 16th Street location.)

I realize I’m encouraging people to do something that’s normally terrible, which is to scroll through a comments section. (Have you ever looked at the comments when, say, an independent bookstore closes? You will hate humanity like never before.) But people are being not only civil, but almost enlightened, with only three trolls ranting about the government in some fashion. The consensus is strongly in favor of abandoning chips, but there’s no timeline for when he’ll make a decision, so do weigh in.

This show of respect for his customers makes Ike Shehadeh the total opposite of that passive-aggressive, mealy-mouthed diner in Minnesota that started nickel-and-diming its customers to protest a minimum wage increase, so good on him. And if you’re crushed about Ike’s dilemma, either way, don’t forget: there’s still a secret menu!

[Photo by Eating Ike's via Flickr]

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