Meconi’s Subs, A Recipe for Success

By Holly Reed

In South Sound, Meconi’s has become synonymous with Sub sandwich, and that’s a tall order given our wealth of options. With a rapid growth of competitors, from independent shops to massive nationwide chains, the options for those seeking a Sub appear on practically every corner. Still, Meconi’s sets itself apart and has experienced strong growth in the last decade.

The business has come a long way from the small, remodeled three car garage opened by Wayne and Nancy Meconi in 1986. In 1993, their daughter Maria opened a new location in Olympia on Capitol Way and the family got back doing what they do best, making great sandwiches. With every sandwich they built, they made a name for themselves. That laid the groundwork for the growth that began again in 2008 when Meconi’s opened a new location in Tumwater.

Two years later, they moved the Olympia location across the street to a larger space which afforded more seating, allowed more customers to stay for lunch and meet up with friends and colleagues in a relaxing location. While the guests were relaxing, Meconi’s wasn’t. They were gearing up for yet another expansion, which occurred in two parts. First they opened a brand new building at the original Lacey location, increasing seating. Then they expanded into Hawk’s Prairie, becoming one of the pioneering businesses to open on the north side of Interstate 5, Lacey’s Gateway District.  During that time, they kept making sandwiches, winning awards in many different South Sound publications for their Subs.

Recently, I spoke with Robin Vaughn, Operations Manager for Meconi’s. When I asked how the business was able to manage such expansive growth in a short time, she told me that the reputation certainly helped, but the thing that keeps the customers coming back again and again is something else entirely.

“It’s the bread,” she said firmly.

Meconi’s bread is baked fresh every day in their very own bakery adjacent to the Lacey restaurant. Because it is baked fresh locally, it doesn’t rely on preservatives like breads shipped in or that arrive in frozen balls and baked on site like other sandwich shops. It’s preservative free and fresh, every single day. For the customers, the bread is special, and it sets Meconi’s apart from the competition.

The bread isn’t the only ingredient made from scratch- meatballs, chili, salads and a number of salad dressings are also made in-house which results in fresher products with a quality that customers have come to expect from Meconi’s.

For the ingredients they don’t make in-house, like deli meats and cheeses, Vaughn stresses the importance of sourcing quality. “You can taste the difference.” She attributes future success of the business to a community that invests in local businesses- and in turn Meconi’s remains committed to giving back to the community. One of the ways that do that is with annual giving trees to help children in need every holiday season.

During the holidays and throughout the year, Meconi’s sells gift cards which can be purchased at any of the Meconi’s locations, or online at www.meconissubs.com.

Drip

In 2015, a new opportunity presented itself to Maria Meconi when she was approached by the building owner the Olympia location rents from.  Meconi suggested to Vaughn that they open a coffee shop adjacent to the sandwich restaurant. With that, Drip Espresso Bar began.

Holding the title of closest coffee shop to the Capitol is a benefit to Drip, to be sure, but Vaughn attributes Drip’s success to more than a convenient location. She and Meconi carried the commitment to quality and made from scratch ingredients into the coffee bar. The shop makes its own vanilla syrup from scratch-made vanilla extract and the fall’s pumpkin latte seasonal offering was made with real pumpkin and spices rather than relying on artificially flavored syrups. The coffee shop offers a rotating variety of seasonal flavors. Up for winter, egg nog and peppermint.

In addition to the usual coffee offerings, a variety of fresh baked goods are available. At any given time, they offer about 15 items, savory and sweet, which rotate with the seasons as well. All the baked goods are made fresh in the same bakery as Meconi’s iconic sandwich bread.

Drip also offers one of the only available meeting spaces close to the Capitol that state workers and other business or large parties can reserve.

Meconi’s

 

-Lacey-

5221 Lacey Blvd.

Lacey, WA

Monday – Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Saturday 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

Phone: 360-459-0213

Fax: 360-459-1170

 

-Olympia-

1018 Capitol Way S. Suite 101

Olympia, WA

Monday – Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Saturday 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

Phone: 360-534-0240

Fax: 360-754-5877

 

-Tumwater-

111 Tumwater Blvd SE

Tumwater, WA

Monday – Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Saturday 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

Phone: 360-528-3292

Fax: 360-528-3293

 

-Hawk’s Prairie-

2527 Marvin Rd NE

Lacey, WA

Monday – Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Saturday 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

Phone:360-688-7919

Fax: 360-515-0224

 

-Drip Espresso Bar-

1018 Capitol Way S

Olympia, Washington

Monday – Friday 6:30AM – 4:00PM

Phone: 360- 870-5204