Fans of Sandy’s and its popular muffaletta sandwich may have been discouraged by last week’s sudden news that the business is moving out of its home at Pac Heights bottle shop Maison Corbeaux. But co-owner Peterson Harter says this isn’t the end of Sandy’s — in fact, things are just starting to heat up for the restaurant. “For me, I think Sandy’s needs to have its own space in order to be seen,” Harter says. “When it comes down to it, it’s a little bit sooner than we would like to have done it, but I think it’s just the right time to find our own space.” Sandy’s was slanging Harter’s version of the New Orleans muffaletta out of a counter at the back of Maison Corbeaux for just over a year, before packing things up last week.
Now, Harter says he and partner Moni Frailing are in talks with a potential new place. “One of the big things that we were kind of stressing is that we want to be a real business and not just a pop up,” Harter says. “In order for us to do it, we really need to have our own space.” He wouldn’t share the location quite yet, since it’s not a done deal, but he’s keeping his options open, stating his ideal location would be near a park, since Sandy’s has “great picnic food,” he says. “I don’t think we have to be in [a certain] neighborhood, I think it’s more of, what can we do in this space, because I know wherever we go, we’ll be able to invite community just like we did at Maison Corbeau,” Harter says.
The plan for the new space — wherever it lands — will be to have a place where customers can sit down and eat, with the muffaletta being the centerpiece item to the menu. Harter says the menu “will evolve a little bit” but he enjoys the idea of the muffaletta being the highlight of what Sandy’s does, with other items acting as a “supporting cast” to the popular sandwich. The New Orleans native states he ideally wants to serve beer and wine alongside the food menu, but he’s also focused on wanting to create a comfortable, homey community for customers as New Orleans music plays throughout the space. “I think when you go to New Orleans, you know what to expect because there’s this energy that New Orleans has — and that’s what I want Sandy’s to have as you go in there,” Harter says.
In the meantime, there are some projects the Sandy’s team will be tackling before their new spot eventually launches: Harter and Frailing are currently searching for a commercial kitchen to do all of their prep before going back into the pop-up world. Once that happens, Harter is looking to pair with wine bars and breweries, much like what Sandy’s previously was doing, but will also expand the pop-up radius beyond the borders of San Francisco, such as in the East Bay and Napa. The duo is also continuing to do catering, such as their shrimp boils, and will also be doing a three-day, muffaletta-filled stint at Outside Lands in August. Sandy’s also recently launched a GoFundMe to help with the start-up costs of landing a space, while Harter also confirmed that they are also open to investors to make sure the good times keep rolling. “There was such an outpouring of people wanting to support us and saying, ‘We’ll go wherever you end up,’ so it’s just making sure that they can still find us somewhere,” Harter says.