The perfect sandwich doesn’t happen by accident. To create a lunch-worthy sandwich, the right blend of flavors and textures work together on two perfectly baked pieces of bread.
To build the best menu of sandwiches, we brought in professional chef Jon Radford to create a selection to reflect Joe’s high-quality ingredients and creative vision. The team went through a series of steps to guide the evolution of these delicious delicatessen offerings. The process was long and exhaustive, but the end result is a menu that Chef Jon, Chef Jose Garcia and Chef Danielle McQuoid are proud to serve. With the same high-quality ingredients found at Joe’s Butcher Shop, Joe’s Next Door offers superior lunch options for the downtown Carmel community.
About the Process
In the beginning, the team got together to brainstorm ideas. In all, about 35 different ideas came from the initial planning meeting. Those ideas and influences came together to shape the current menu.
‘There is no shortage of ideas here, there were way too many than we knew what to do with. There will never be an end to the creativity in this group of people.’ – Chef Jon
Like any good sandwich, it all starts with the bread. Styles, brands, tastes and texture were all considered in selecting which breads would make the foundation of the sandwich.
Next, each sandwich was tested both hot and cold. The team wanted to see how the cheeses worked together and how the crisp of the bread changed the sandwich.
A big part of the evolution of the menu was the commitment to make as many of the ingredients fresh, in store. All of the sauces are made fresh, if it’s possible to make it in-house, it is.
About the chef
Chef Jon started in the food industry as a butcher. He worked behind the counter from 1990-2000 and still thinks of that time as some of the most fun he’s ever had. After spending years as a butcher, Jon studied at the Johnson & Wales Culinary School where he learned a wide variety of techniques and skills that launched his career. Jon then went on to hold the position as head chef at a popular north Indianapolis restaurant.
Looking to go out on his own and try something new, Jon opened and operated his own food truck. ‘The goal has always been to bring delicious, high quality food to people who might not be exposed to it any other way.’
While looking for his next opportunity, Joe Lazzara approached him with a new innovative idea for Joe’s on the go. He knew immediately it was the right fit.
‘A lot of people came to me with good offers, but I knew when this one came up I had to take it, it’s exactly what I want to do.’
‘Joe has been a big help, he’s very well-rounded and has a firm grasp on what’s happening. We work very well together.’
Chef Jon started cooking with the influence of his Aunt Maxine. “My Aunt was the best cook I knew. I grew up in a large southern family and it was always a special treat to go see her. I would ask her a ton of questions; she was the strongest influence for getting started in the culinary industry.”
About Joe’s Next Door
Joe’s Next Door will open between late July and early August. Chef Jon did offer up one sandwich he is particularly excited about. ‘The pork belly banh mi sandwich is sure to be one of the best sandwiches in Indy.’
As for the other menu items, we will just have to wait and see. Stop by Joe’s Next Door, try some sandwiches off the menu then swing by Joe’s Butcher Shop to get everything you need to recreate it at home.
The Next Door team prides themselves on creativity and relentless dedication to only the best products. Come by for lunch and enjoy a hot, made to order sandwich or cold sandwich, take a look at our fresh daily-made pastas and side dishes for the perfect complement to your mid-day meal.