A.J. Hofer has owned restaurants before, but his Jersey Mike's Subs location is his and North Dakota's first. And it won't be the last.
Hofer's Jersey Mike's in West Fargo located at 833 24th Ave. is set to open Wednesday, June 27. This is the first of three locations Hofer has lined up to open in the metro area, with the other locations still to be determined.
"It's long hours, a lot of work and a lot of little things that need to be done just to pull it all together," Hofer said. "But it truly is worth it in the end."
Hofer, who went to college at North Dakota State University, said he ate at a Jersey Mike's for the first time while on a visit to Florida and he says he was hooked ever since. With no locations in North Dakota or South Dakota, Hofer wanted to get a location nearby in the growing West Fargo market.
"You fall in love with it and you just get addicted to it and it ends up being a lot of fun," Hofer said. "I was hooked right away. What an opportunity."
Jersey Mike's, a fast-casual sub sandwich franchise with more than 1,500 locations open and under development nationwide, has been open since 1956.
Jersey Mike's, known for fresh sliced and fresh grilled subs, will have a free sub fundraiser until Sunday, July 1, to support Junior Achievement. The West Fargo location is circulating coupons offering a free regular sub for a minimum $2 contribution to Junior Achievement.
Jersey Mike's meats and cheeses are sliced on the spot and is known for their signature subs made Mike's Way with fresh vegetables including onions, lettuce and tomatoes topped with "the juice" consisting of red wine vinegar and olive oil blended.
"We're real proud of the brand," Hofer said. "When we set out on this kind of journey to get involved with Jersey Mike's, it just fit the bill with everything they're doing."
What: Jersey Mike's Subs
Where 1833 24th Avenue
Hours: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily
Phone: (701) 561-0800