Got the munchies? This might be your new favorite restaurant.
The words “Weed like donations from you” on the tip jar was the first thing I saw as I walked up to the register of the cannabis-themed toasted-sub shack known as Cheba Hut. Walls plastered with vintage band posters, stickers that say “420”, Cheech and Chong memorabilia, murals of beach dwellers, all urge anyone who enters to grub till the munchies are gone.
The cashier had a grin and dreadlocks that touched his shoulder. He casually chatted with me like we’d been friends for years. He’s also spontaneously sang lyrics from Weezer’s “Island in the Sun” playing in the background while ringing me up.
Funky sub sandwich names like “White Widow.” “Chronic,” “Kush” and “AK-47”, to name a few, filled the menu for very reasonable prices. Four inchers are called nubs, eight inchers are pinners and 12 inchers are called, you guessed it, blunts.
“See anything ya like? My favorite is the Jamaican Red. It’s spicy as hell but it’s really really good,” the cashier said.
Spicy was an understatement. The eight inch sandwich was loaded with shredded grilled chicken, a zangy home-grown hot sauce and oozed with melted cheddar cheese.-Lettuce, onions, pickles topped it, making my tongue tingle with every addicting, mouthwatering bite. When I was done eating half of my sandwich, I asked for extra sauce in preparation for devouring the other half.
The cashier saw me stuffing my face and smiled that grin.
“Ya like it?”
Two thumbs up.
About halfway into the sandwich I already needed a cold beverage to fight some of the spice (no pun intended). While surveying the drinks I realized that Cheba Hut had done what no other restaurant had dared to do before. They have a Kool-Aid dispenser! It’s genius! I have yet to meet anybody who doesn’t like Kool-Aid (ok, Jonestown aside). It had the right amount of sugar, too.
Besides Tucson, there are Cheba Hut locations in Glendale, Flagstaff, Mesa and Tempe. But it seems to me that this could go national, and I’m sure “weed” like to see the place take off.