They’re opening quite a few of these in the Cincinnati area – I think they’ll be up to 20 in the next year or so!
Hook & Ladder: Smoked turkey breast, Virginia honey ham and melted Monterey Jack, served Fully Involved.So while we were continuously brought delicious subs – one of the founders, Robin Sorensen, chatted with us and told us how Firehouse started and all the things that make them stand apart.
Robin & his brother Chris were firefighters in Jacksonville and decided to start a business together. Their dad had run a TV sales/repair business – so they learned their excellent customer service skills from working there. Dad was also a good cook and they gained a love of food (and hot sauce) from him and put that all together to open a sub place.
The first sandwich is their specialty and now – it’s Larry’s favorite. The Hook & Ladder has turkey, ham and jack cheese. They steam their meat and cheese instead of toasting it and wowee – this makes a huge difference! The meat is so juicy! I loved it!
They also have a HUGE foundation and if you get a Hook & Ladder combo – 25 cents goes right to the foundation. They have supplied tens of thousands of dollars in lifesaving equipment for a variety of organizations right here in Cincinnati!
Their Dad also created a great hot sauce that they have on all the tables and for sale. Captain Sorensen’s sauce uses the Datil Pepper from the Caribbean. I’m not a big fan of traditional hot sauce but this stuff is awesome! It was sweet and spicy – so good! I use it every time I go now.
Italian: Genoa salami, pepperoni, ham, melted provolone, Italian dressing, and seasonings, served Fully Involved.
This sub was again – juicy & tasty! By sub #3 I was starting to get full! I loaded this one up with the Captain’s sauce and devoured it. Larry liked this as well – he was quickly becoming a Firehouse fan.
Smokehouse Beef & Cheddar Brisket: USDA Choice beef brisket smoked over hickory for 16+ hours, then smothered in melted cheddar and Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce.
Last up was the brisket – and I have to say it was my least favorite – it just wasn’t as juicy as the others but it is one of their best sellers as well. We really got a great tasting of their menu and such a great feel for Firehouse.
Robin was really great – letting us know how they got started with one restaurant in Jacksonville and now they have over 600! They also have their own signature drink – Cherry Limeade. It’s a specialty down in Jacksonville and they worked with Coca Cola to get it just right in the Freestyle machines.
They topped our evening off with a lemon macadamia white chocolate cookie! This was great – but I was so stuffed – I just had to take this home with me.
I was truly impressed by their commitment to the local areas they serve. Each location has a unique mural of something in that area related to the fire department. All that money in the Foundation also goes back into the communities. They were telling us about defibrillators they donated to a school nearby and so much more.
They also figured out unique ways to raise more money. They have these big 5 gallon pickle buckets that they go through in the restaurant. Instead of just pitching them or recycling them – they rinse them and sell them for $2. They went from having all that waste to generating a lot of money for their Foundation.