What You Should Know Before Eating At Jersey Mike’s

What You Should Know Before Eating At Jersey Mike’s


Jersey Mike’s has been making subs for decades
now, but what do you really know about this fast-growing sandwich chain? From their humble beginnings to their secret
menu, their extensive charity work, and even an unfortunate controversy, here’s the untold
truth of Jersey Mike’s. Jersey Mike’s began in 1956, only two years
after Burger King was founded and almost a decade before Subway ever opened. A single store, called Mike’s Subs, was a
mom-and-pop business, set up to sell a relatively new invention: the submarine sandwich. In 1971, Peter Cancro joined the Mike’s Subs
team at just 14. “When I was 14, I showed up at the business
and my voice mattered. That’s the kind of culture that it was.” He thrived in the sub business, and a few
years later in 1975, when he heard the owners discussing selling the business, he approached
his football coach and asked for a loan of $150,000 to help him buy the shop. Surprisingly, his coach agreed, making the
teenager a business owner. In an interview with QSR, Cancro was asked
what it felt like to own his own business at such a young age. He said it was: “A natural high, I guess. But it wasn’t easy. I didn’t go to school for a week and a half
while I was out trying to raise capital. Everyone was wondering where I was. They said I’d ruined my life.” In 1987, Cancro began franchising Jersey Mike’s. It almost destroyed the company. Cancro had put “every dime” into growing Jersey
Mike’s, and eventually set up about 35 stores up and down the Jersey Shore. When a recession hit in the early 1990s, all
of the company’s money had been put into growth, so there was nothing left in the bank to save
it from hard times. Six people were laid off and Cancro was forced
to visit each franchisee and make sure things were still running smoothly. It was also impossible to buy any new stores. Cancro told QSR, “We were under. I didn’t declare bankruptcy, but I was negative
$2 million to $5 million. That’s when I buttoned the chinstrap. I visited every single owner. Growth was supposed to be exponential, but
it just stopped.” Cancro had to run the company without the
staff he had let go, eventually having to work more than 100 hours every week. Because there was no money for TV advertising,
he took to local radio to get the word out, and filled the gaps with door-to-door marketing
and mail campaigns. Things eventually turned around, and within
three years of the recession, Cancro hired back the staff he had let go. Jersey Mike’s has since gone on to enjoy incredible
success. Today, the company does $1 billion in annual
sales, with 1,400 outlets in 45 states. As of 2018, the company won the award for
the fastest growing franchise concept in America four years in a row. Over the next five years, Cancro hopes to
double that revenue to $2 billion each year from 3,000 locations. According to Cancro, there are a few key tricks
to building such a successful business. It basically comes down to choosing the right
franchisees, communicating with staff and colleagues, getting involved and, perhaps
simplest of all, showing up every day. Almost makes it look easy, doesn’t he? One of the things which separates Cancro’s
business style from that of his fast food CEO colleagues is that he genuinely seems
to relish getting involved. While he was providing his key lessons on
managing a business to the Jersey Mike’s blog, he was in the midst of touring the country
to visit his stores. According to Cancro himself, when he walks
into a store, “I say nothing. I walk in wearing a white oxford shirt with
the sleeves rolled up and I start cleaning the grill. I get right in there with them.” He then joins the production line, helps make
sandwiches and routinely asks his colleagues, many of whom are teenagers, how he’s doing. He says it’s a great way of leveling the playing
field and makes the company feel like a family. In a 2018 Reddit post, a former Jersey Mike’s
detailed some of the restaurant’s secret menu items. One of these is the 99, a Philly cheesesteak
with onions, peppers, mushrooms and jalapeño, with four slices of cheese and chipotle mayo
sauce. Another more rare item is the Chicka-Phila-Roni:
a chicken Philly with grilled pepperoni, grilled onions, chipotle mayo, marinara and/or ranch. If you’re after something a little more low-carb,
there’s always the Sub in a Tub. It’s essentially the inner workings of a sub
but without any of the bread. Jersey Mike’s is willing to try a whole range
of things to get their sandwiches selling, but none of their efforts so far are likely
to have been as good as the time they showed up in a Jennifer Lopez video. In 2018, J-Lo released “Dinero,” a collaboration
with Cardi B and DJ Khaled. Among all the dance sequences and scenes depicting
Lopez barbecuing in lingerie is a shot in which the singer sits at on a staircase eating
a meal from Jersey Mike’s. The company’s social media accounts were quick
to point out their cameo in “Dinero,” and considering it’s been viewed around 100 million
times, it’s easy to imagine they were probably pretty happy about seeing their products in
the video. You can’t buy exposure like that. The nature of owning a franchise business
means you’re inevitably going to court some controversy. That’s exactly what happened in August 2018,
when an employee of the company in Marysville, Washington, was fired over maternity leave. According to KIRO 7, the pregnant worker realized
one day she hadn’t been assigned shifts and, after asking her manager about it, received
a text telling her she’d been fired. The text read: “It’s not a good time for us to have someone
who’s leaving for maternity leave in several months anyways.” Under Washington state law, it’s considered
an unfair practice for an employer to terminate employment due to pregnancy. After the incident received considerable media
attention, the owner of that store offered her job back. The worker ultimately declined. The manager responsible for the firing also
resigned, and did not offer comment. Freshness is the name of the game at Jersey
Mike’s. The chain takes special pride in preparing
all its vegetables by hand every day. According to Greg Potter, one of the company’s
franchisees, freshness is what makes Jersey Mike’s superior to other subs. He wrote in a post on the company’s blog: “We bake our bread fresh daily. We shred our lettuce and cut our onions and
tomatoes daily. There’s nothing leftover that you will have
the next day on your sub. It’s all fresh that morning.” In 2013, the chain was honored with the Restaurant
Chain Marketer of the Year award for “leading promotions on the Certified Angus Beef brand”
on its menus, social media, and advertising campaigns. According to Brian Todd, President and CEO
of the Food Institute, Jersey Mike’s ability to play to “shifting tastes” towards fresh
ingredients and authentic, local food has given the chain a marked advantage over competitors. It might surprise you that Jersey Mike’s food
is actually pretty good for you, as far as casual dining goes, at least. In 2014, Grellin.org ranked the healthiest
chain restaurants in the USA, and Jersey Mike’s tied seventh with In-N-Out Burger, beating
out Panda Express and El Pollo Loco. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the top sub chain
on the list, with Subway coming in third. But none of the usual suspects like McDonald’s
or Burger King are in the top 10, so take that for what it’s worth. Meanwhile, certain items on the Jersey Mike’s
menu are anything but healthy. A 2016 survey found that the restaurant’s
Buffalo chicken cheesesteak was given the third-worst mark among sandwich chain items,
earning a D-minus. That chicken cheesesteak was also found to
contain a staggering 1,770 calories and 79.5 grams of fat in one sandwich. There’s quite the scope for customization
at Jersey Mike’s, but one way of making a sandwich has become the central focus for
the company’s marketing. Mike’s Way means making a sandwich with onions,
lettuce, tomatoes, spices, and a blend of olive oil and red wine vinegar called The
Juice. “Bread that loves The Juice, Juice that loves
the bread.” The main filling — roast beef, turkey, tuna,
whatever — is up to the customer. According to Marketing Manager Matt Chmiel,
a sub made “Mike’s Way” is Jersey Mike’s most popular product, and is what the store has
been famous for from the beginning. The store also offers a whole smorgasbord
of different sandwiches, featuring ingredients as wide-ranging as bell peppers, smoked bacon,
sauerkraut, Thousand Island dressing, mushrooms, and chipotle mayo. Just remember, Mike’s Way probably became
famous for a reason. Becoming a franchisee for a company growing
as quickly as Jersey Mike’s would be a dream come true for many budding entrepreneurs,
but it’s not a role easily attained. Every franchisee is required to go through
a week of training in New Jersey, during which time they meet Cancro, company president Hoyt
Jones and the rest of the executive team. This training is primarily aimed at acclimating
new store owners to the Jersey Mike’s corporate culture. In exchange for their commitment to the company,
franchisees are offered real estate assistance, architects, contractors, and more from Jersey
Mike’s headquarters, essentially taking many of the stresses away from new owners. Jones told the Franchise Times: “We try to take as much off the plate of the
franchisee so that the only thing they have to worry about is running the store. Learn how to make the best sub, push speed
of service, quality of service, talk to the customer.” Jersey Mike’s isn’t just known for subs. The company also puts a lot of emphasis on
charity work, which it describes as a “culture of giving.” Since 2010, Jersey Mike’s has raised over
$34 million simply to give, and regularly asks customers to donate to local charities
throughout the month of March. On the last Wednesday of March, the company
also hosts a Day of Giving, where it donates 100 percent of its revenue to charity. According to Cancro, Jersey Mike’s has done
this since 1975, and considering 2018 saw the company generate over $6 million in sales
on its Day of Giving, all of which went to charity, it’s not hard to imagine the final
tally of its charitable donations is astronomical. The company has also worked with veterans’
charities. In 2017, for example, Jersey Mike’s provided
funding and support to K9s for Warriors, a charity which provides service dogs to military
veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injuries, and other
trauma. One vet who benefited from the program was
Richard Baca, who suffers from PTSD and was assigned a service dog named Jersey. Baca completed a three-week course with K9s
for Warriors, during which he received 120 hours of instruction on reintegration into
society. Speaking to Jersey Mike’s, Baca explained, “I learned his name was Jersey because Jersey
Mike’s Subs donated the money for him. I am eternally grateful. Jersey has given me hope and a whole new outlook
on life and my future.” As of 2017, K9s for Warriors had helped 312
veterans find a service dog to help them cope with post-combat life. And some of their work has been made possible
by Jersey Mike’s Hitting baseballs is hungry work, so the New
York Yankees probably found themselves jumping for joy when Jersey Mike’s was named the team’s
Official Sub Sandwich Shop in 2015. The Yankees agreed to promote Jersey Mike’s
via in-stadium LED signs and game tickets the company can use for sweepstakes. The partnership isn’t a huge surprise, considering
Peter Cancro has long been a sports fan and that two professional athletes, former Yankees
star Morgan Ensberg and former NFL player Angelo Crowell, own their own Jersey Mike’s
franchises. In 2018, Jersey Mike’s also announced they
were sponsoring the Summer Split of the North American League of Legends Championship Series,
an e-sports league, in the hope the chain could make a mark on a younger demographic,
too. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Mashed videos about your favorite
stuff are coming soon. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the
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100 Comments

  1. I didn’t even know this place existed when I saw it on a commercial at the barber shop. I thought it was Jimmy Johns until it said the name

  2. I hate iceberg lettuce .I like spinach better . The bread looks bland .I just don't like the video's with those people .

  3. What this video didn't tell you is that the woman who was fired knew she was pregnant before she applied for the job. She wanted to get hired, work for a month and then ride the maternity leave gravy train and never come back to work.

  4. I use to work here in NJ but they under paid the hell outta me while I worked my ass off for them but that’s not the business fault it’s the manager , but we do have rlly clean stores and very fresh food so

  5. New Jersey Mike's in Mishawaka Indiana sucks. We had one delivered to her house it was 3/4 lettuce and two little pieces of that slice Thin Meat. I would never go there again!! I was at a different one many years ago and it was the same thing so I thought I'd get the new one by my house a try. I noticed in the videos they don't put three tiny little slivers a mean on it I know you taste is lettuce.

  6. Ummm…at least subway doesnt beg for tips. I stopped going after one visit. There not waiting tables or delivering anything. Begging is a turn off

  7. When I first tried Jersey Mike's, I was hooked. They're not expensive and their sandwiches are the same sizes as the ones displayed in their commercials. Not going back to Subway.

  8. COLEY FOLEY SAYS: ALL FUCKIN "SUBWAYS" FUCKIN SUCK & SEEM TO BE OWNED BY LIKE FUCKIN SMELLY FUCKIN INDIANS…

  9. It’s actually onions lettuce tomato vinegar oil oregano and salt 🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️

  10. Opened one in my neighborhood a couple months ago. Better than Subway, but do cost a lot more. Thing I don't like is they charge extra for cheese. No extra charge for cheese at Subway.

  11. Better take a closer look at the store in Bellmore NY. Seems like you are BOTHERING the employees by asking for anything not on the menu board ……. gave them 3 chances. Every time there was some issue, Done.

  12. I’ve eaten at Jersey Mike’s all across the country you get the same friendly service and outstanding subs no matter where you go

  13. I never liked Jersey Mike's. The sand-which is sloppy, wet and the lettuce is that cheap McDonald's stuff. I tried going back but every-time, was disappointed.

  14. I tried Jersey Mike's once, but the bread tasted stale… I prefer Firehouse Subs and Larry's Giant Subs. Plus their prices are kinda out there.

  15. That's what makes a great boss. One that doesn't put himself above his workers and will get in the trenches for more than just a photo op. He should offer Veterans a chance to open their own stores. Former military members have amazing work ethic and moral character.

  16. Your cunt voice is disgusting. If you cant make a sandwich at home, go to mcdonalds. If anyone needs praise, it’s sheetz. Half the time i spray fire but buying a sandwich is insane. If you’re a working person, pack your own lunch. If you cant cook at home, you’re useless. Sleep forever

  17. I use to work at my local Jersey Mike’s…….honestly my best paying job so far. When everyone works together, it was a good job 👍

  18. I’m partial towards my local chain Cousin’s Subs here in Wisconsin but, definitely Jersey Mike’s is my close second choice.

  19. Nice try Mashed, if you think this video is going to make me crave Jersey Mike’s then you’re absolutely right

  20. Jersey mikes is trash. Every New York spot is way better and since I now live in FL I go to Publix for my subs. Way better than this shit shop

  21. This place is disgusting. hardly any meat, dry ass bread which was probably stale, so much veg on an Italian sub. If I wanted a salad I would have ordered one and over priced. Crap. don't eat there.

  22. I snuck a Jersey Mike's Club Sub into Regal and I watched Far From Home. The sandwich has a lot of sodium, but it has lots of meat and it tastes really good.

  23. I work here currently and all food is prepped and made fresh the moment it arrives. Nothing short of a fantastic sandwich.

  24. 9 dollar 6" ? 17 dollar footlong? As good as it looked, I wasn't about to shell out 40+ fuc*ing dollars for my wife and I to eat a grinder apiece after getting a soda and stuff. Wtf is up with their prices? Don't get me wrong… Subway blows, but my grinder better have a filet mignon on it for 17 bucks. I'd rather spend my money at a nice, family style sit down restaurant for that price. How could any one afford to pay those prices to eat there regularly to "love it"? And no, I'm not settling for a puny 6" sub for 7 to 9 bucks either. Wtf is that?

  25. Wow I had no idea the owner was so persistent and hard working while believing in his brand! Awesome! I always preferred it over subway but after learning this I will exclusively buy from JM now!

  26. Stop eating there years ago because my local stores would always get recurring bad inspection reports due to soiled meat slicers.

  27. It's really too bad that the sandwiches aren't any different than Subway in my opinion. I mean y'all look good in the sad but you'll never see that much meat on a Jersey Mike's sandwich I found it to be very disappointing. Same goes for Jimmy John's that's another wish sandwich, two pieces of bread and I wish there was some meat in between it. So it's obvious to me people never had a good sandwich

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