KAYSVILLE — Forgive me for stating the incredibly obvious here, but the Standard-Examiner’s weekly GO! restaurant features are known for their focus on one main item: food.
And though Valentine’s Day is still more than two months away, this week’s feature adds another ingredient to the mix: love. Yes, Jennifer and Jordan Olsen’s story is definitely worthy of February the 14th, so maybe just flip your calendar ahead and pretend for a little while.
In a move that comes straight from the pages of some kind of fast-food fairytale, the Clearfield couple recently purchased the Kaysville Main Street Subway franchise. And if oven-toasted bread, mustard, mayonnaise and various kinds of meat doesn’t warm your heart, here’s an important caveat: The Olsens first laid eyes on each other while working at the same restaurant some 22 years ago.
Jordan grew up in Fruit Heights, graduating from Davis High School in 1998. His first-ever job was in 1995, working for Guy Johnson and Doug Scott at the local Subway. Jennifer moved to Kaysville from Shelley, Idaho, in 1997 to attend Weber State University. Soon after she landed in Utah, she got a job at the same restaurant while she went to school.
“I’d been working there for about two years and took a little time off,” Jordan said. “I remember coming back and someone said, “Hey, there’s a new girl working here and I think your gonna like her.’”
The girl, of course, was the future Mrs. Jordan Olsen. Upon returning to work, Jordan turned around a corner and saw Jennifer standing at the front counter making a sandwich.
“I know this sounds totally campy and cheesy,” Jordan said. “But when I first saw her, I said, ‘Wow.’ It really was love at first sight.”
Jordan says while his love was immediate, it took Jennifer a little time to catch the same feelings.
“It took a few months,” Jordan said. “But she finally came around.”
To sum up a lifetime of love in a few words, the couple eventually married and today they have three daughters. They’ve owned and operated Layton’s On Chord Academy (a private music school) for several years, but the rendezvous spot has always been in the back of their minds.
“It’s kind of one of those lofty, pie-in-the-sky kind of ideas,” Jordan said. “But we’ve always kind of thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to buy that place?’”
Apparently, the pie fell to the earth. After more than 30 years of ownership, Johnson and Scott decided to hang up their aprons and sell the Subway earlier this year. When the Olsens found out the franchise was up for grabs, they jumped at the chance to own it. They’ve been running the sandwich shop since August and will hold a special “grand reopening” celebration from Dec. 30 to Jan. 4, with discounts and giveaways each day of the week.
Jennifer says the first few months in business have been like stepping into a time machine.
“It’s been really fun to be back at the restaurant,” she said. “I’m making sandwiches for some of the same customers I was serving 20 years ago. That says a lot about this restaurant to have such loyal, lifelong customers.”
During the first few days of business, the Olsens say a pair of Davis County brothers who are attorneys, and a man who owns a local auto shop, came in to grab a sub. All of them have been coming to the restaurant for more than two decades.
“The circle of life thing is kind of crazy,” Jordan says. “I don’t think I ever grew up thinking the local Subway would have such an impact on my life, but here we are.”