Two new options for food are coming to Hiawatha, right off I-380, in the near future. One is brand new and the other is a favorite that was once just a mile away but closed a decade ago.

The Cedar Rapids metro area will soon welcome a new eatery with a unique story/history. It's called Erbert and Gerbert's Sandwich Shop. Even though sandwich is in their name, they also offer soups and mac & cheese. Soups typically available are Chicken Wild Rice, Cheddar Cheese & Broccoli, and Southwest Chili.

Erbert & Gerbert's does something very unique with their sandwiches that serves two purposes. They carve out part of the bread. It helps the sandwich contain everything better and they give the piece of bread ("Guts" as it's called below) to you so you can dip it in your soup choice.

Now back to how Erbert and Gerbert's was named... the father of the founder used to tell him and his nine siblings stories to help teach them "about science, history, adventure and being a good friend."  Those stories were called the Adventures of Erbert & Gerbert Herbert. So, when you look at the Erbert's and Gerbert's menu, you're seeing the names of the characters in those stories: Flash, Disrupter, Jacob Bluefinger, Tappy, etc.

The first Erbert and Gerbert's opened in Eau Claire, Wisconsin in 1988. There are now more than 100 locations in 12 states, including on the campuses of both Iowa and UNI. Hiawatha gets one soon.

Hiawatha is also getting a Godfather's Pizza. It marks the pizza place's return to that area of the metro after the location on Blairs Ferry Road NE in Cedar Rapids closed approximately ten years ago. That location, now home to Adelitas Mexican Grill, is only about a mile from where Godfather's will reside in Hiawatha.

Godfather's Pizza also started in the Midwest. Founded in 1973 in Omaha, Nebraska, there are nearly 600 locations today. The Town and Country Shopping Center, at 3647 1st Avenue SE in Cedar Rapids, has been home to a Godfather's with a large seating area for decades. I worked there years ago when the Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza was unveiled.

Both Erbert and Gerbert's and Godfather's Pizza will be opening in the Big Ten Mart at 1225 Boyson Road in Hiawatha, just west of I-380. A company representative tells me both will have delivery available and hope to open late this month.

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