The food truck is named after women's suffragist Alice Paul. There's a Marie Curie chicken and rice gumbo, Greta Garbonzo Bang soup and the customer-favorite Jane Goodall banana pudding.
"One lady asked me if I serve men," says Her Story Café owner Liz Rosenbaum. "I said, 'Well, if they're hungry and want a sandwich.'"
Rosenbaum, a former Widefield District 3 high school history teacher, laughs off the misperception of her menu allusions to inspirational women as some form of "man bashing." When it came to giving names to her classic sandwich combinations — with a couple creative twists like her Sassy and Peppy sauces — she figured she'd build a theme into her concept that would educate guests while feeding them.
You can read more about the featured women on Her Story's website, where you'll also learn what Rosenbaum's reading; who her community partners are; the soup and mac-and-cheese flavors of the week; general Twitter-isms; locations of the food truck (yes, it still operates, though this sit-down was recently established); and how to download and use the Square app for your smartphone to nix the need for cash or plastic each time you pay.
My point being that Rosenbaum, though rooted in the past in spirit, is new-era tech savvy, smartly parking touches of food truck culture such as social media blasts and web-based payments inside her new home base. With homey décor and the women-centric design, it's unique, even if nothing on the menu breaks major new ground in the deli scene. We're talking traditional pairings, like turkey with Swiss cheese, tomato and spinach on your choice of white, wheat, ciabatta or rye; mustard and mayo optional. That one, named after the first woman in space, Sally Ride, is called the "Blastt" ($6.95; all sandwiches include one side).
But what's clear from your first bite — actually from before you even finish peeling down the carefully wrapped parchment paper and foil — is that these sandwiches are thoughtfully constructed and well-prepared overall. Meats, cheeses and breads hit the panini press first, with the fresh ingredients added later to retain crispness. Portions are generous enough and the ingredients are quality, from Saag's meats and excellent local Old German Bakery breads and pastries to Colorado-grown produce in season, Colorado Coffee Merchants brew and some dessert items from former Gotta Love It! Market members with whom Rosenbaum incubated her business.
A highlight and Rosenbaum's personal favorite, featuring the aforementioned Sassy sauce (an orange-marmalade-and-mustard mix), is the Feelin' Sassy ($6.95) with ham, cheddar and the fresh fixin's on wheat. The sweet and vinegary edge marries well with the proteins under the toasted bread's crunch.
Her Story's stacked Italian Grinder ($5 as the deal of the day) and She Deviled egg salad sandwich ($5.50) are also exemplary for their styles. And variations of basic egg breakfast sandwiches with meat options are totally contenting, if in need of small hot-sauce hits to wet the dense ciabatta rolls and add kick.
For $10, you can get a coffee and pastry at breakfast plus a sack lunch with a sandwich and side prepared while you eat. Buy-two-get-one-free soups by the quart are also $10 to-go. Though again basic, they're perfectly homestyle charming.
Again, in culinary practice, most of these items are a familiar story, but at least Her Story is told coherently, with nice pauses for effect and a satisfying ending.