Teeming with counter-culture references, the highly buzzed, toasted sub shop Cheba Hut in Deep Ellum openly celebrates the Green Wave.
Whether or not you’re a supporter or occasional partaker of the controversial recreation, Dallas Cheba Hut franchise owner, Chance Steed welcomes all, including “anyone that loves smooth vibes, dank food, cold beer and chill homies.”
Put bluntly, this is a tasty joint with dang good food, perfect for you and your buds.
Subs, all named for strains of weed, start at $5.39 with prices varying depending on size. The most popular are the Kali Mist with roasted turkey and chipotle mayo, and the White Widow which I tried. Its reputation is deserved, and was one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever tasted. Juicy, ranch-smothered grilled chicken breast, strips of meat-candy (bacon), and mushrooms make each bite succulent, and umami-filled. However, it’s the exceptional garlic and herb bun that makes this sandwich.
Next time, I plan to try Steed’s favorite: a Pinner-sized Narc Cuban from the “secret stash menu,” paired with chips, and an Odell 90 shilling. (Currently, secret menu items are only available in-store, but the team is working on making them available online.)
Vegetarians, fear not — there are veggie-licious choices such as Magic Mushroom, which includes a teriyaki-glazed Portobella and pineapple; and Power Plant, with guac, hummus and spring mix. Consider trying a cup of French Onion soup, chowing down on a Bowl O’ Balls – a pile of saucy meatballs – or sharing Loaded Not’chos.
For lighter fare, load up on greens with their Greek Salad, fitted with tart Kalamatas, and fresh veggies. Or try their flavorful Tuna Salad, with a hearty pile of their mayo-based mix is creamy, yet still chunky. That smoothness is balanced with crisp cucumber and tomato, and crunchy, handcrafted croutons which also bring a spiced, savory edge. I would gladly partake again, but ask for many more croutons; luckily, menu items are customizable.
Lastly, indulge in a dessert, like their classic chocolate chip cookie, or – as their theme demands – a decadent, fudgy brownie. It has a tender, melt-in-the-mouth crumb, making for a sweet finale.
Despite the cheeky, weed-themed names throughout the menu, neither hemp nor CBD is added to the products, nor will be anytime soon. “We know our subs taste amazing without any cannabis extracts and we wouldn’t even think about adding this to our food unless the industry became more regulated,” says Steed.
Likewise, products containing CBD cannot be consumed on the premises. However, refreshing, alcoholic beverages, amongst other Cotton Mouth Cures, are readily offered. The full bar serves local craft brews like Deep Eddy Red Grapefruit Vodka featured in the Hot Box, in addition to ales from Deep Ellum Brewing Co., and more.
Now, let’s talk more about the motif. The Green Wave is a grassroots movement, but also represents a rising, national phenomenon, demonstrated by blossoming calls for legalization (as in The MORE Act of 2019). “I’m always for more freedom, and to be a part of a concept that allows myself and the crew to be comfortable with who we are and what we want to represent,” says Steed.
Founded in 1998, Cheba Hut has grown across 10 states, with Dallas marking the 33rd location in the U.S., and second in Texas. Steed plans to open three locations across the metroplex, with Dallas “a key ingredient” to the franchise’s growth in North Texas.
Inside the shop, you’ll see a colorful, stylistic mural of people (including some important figures in Dallas) enjoying a fancy art show, as well as more casual folk intermingling in the crowd, one of which is depicted hitting a bong made from an inverted Reunion Tower. Austin-based couple Candy Kuo and Fish illustrated the piece featured in the Deep Ellum venue, having already created the artwork in their hometown’s Cheba Hut.
Order online (nutrition info here), dine in, pick up to-go, use DoorDash, or download their free, user-friendly app (Android or iOS) to grab your grub. The app also includes an addictive arcade game, Flippy Bird, that allows you to build up reward points.
Cover photo courtesy Cheba Hut
N.L.Thi-Hamrick is devoted to all things that bring joy: good food, writing freely, lots of smiles,
and pursuing things that make you feel worthwhile.