Made in Idaho: Lemon Tree Co. and the sandwich with a twist

Posted at 8:21 AM, Apr 01, 2022

BOISE, IDAHO — When looking for grub in the Treasure Valley, it's usually not hard to find a place that will make you a typical sandwich. But for people looking for a place that will construct a unique masterpiece between two pieces of freshly baked bread, there's one specific place that comes to mind.

Sandwich lovers in Boise have a place to go downtown if they're looking for something a little different, as is evident from Lemon Tree Co.'s tag phrase.

"Sandwiches with a twist. So we're not your average sandwich shop or deli," said Lemon Tree Co. owner Jasson Parra.

That was in 2019 when we first stopped by Lemon Tree Company, an artisan sandwich shop that's been thriving since opening in 2017. But like so many businesses, that ability to thrive came into question over the past two years.

"Well, just like everyone, as soon as Covid hit, we had to shut down in 2020. We were down like 75%, and just like everyone, we were feverishly trying to figure out what we were going to do, how we were going to make it," said Parra.

But fortunately, they were ahead of the game having already partnered with several delivery services and an easy pick-up system.

"Even despite the shutdown, people were still able to order to go," said Parra.

That and teaming up with several Treasure Valley businesses by incorporating their products, like Gaston's Bakery for sandwich bread or Meriwether Cider to rinse it all down.

"Just be local and support local. So people have supported us, we're a local company, and we're trying to do the same," said Parra.

What else has changed over the past two and a half years? Let's just say they went from eight employees to more than 20 — out of necessity.

"We've just found really great people who really believe in what we're doing and support it, and without them, I don't think we could have grown as much as we have and been able to open another location," said Parra.

As of last month, Lemon Tree Company opened up their second Treasure Valley location, this one in Harris Ranch, and unlike their downtown spot, this one has a sweet surprise.

"Now unlike their first location in Downtown Boise, their new location here in Harris Ranch, it's not actually a standalone. If you want dessert, all you gotta do is walk a couple feet and suddenly, you're having ice cream at The Stil. But before I can even think about dessert, it's time for lunch," smiled Matt Sizemore.

"They're really creative with ice cream, we're really creative with food, and so it was a perfect marriage," said Parra.

The other big difference with the new place other than ending your day with dessert? You can start your day there too!

"We are doing breakfast here Saturdays and Sundays from 9-12. So five breakfast sandwiches, a parfait, and our savory mushroom herb oats with some fried egg on them. It's pretty, pretty awesome," said Parra.

Jasson and the crew at Lemon Tree say they're grateful to the community for helping them get through some tough times during the pandemic, and are thrilled to now call themselves a thriving Made in Idaho business.

"It's humbling. It's pretty amazing to be welcomed into this community and have that continued relationship with those folks. So I guess it's all the warm and fuzzies. I guess that's the best way I can describe it," smiled Parra.

Even though Jasson just opened up their Harris Ranch location in February, they're already planning to open a new location in the Parkcenter area of Boise. If everything goes according to plan, you should be able to grab one of your favorite sandwiches from that new location this summer.