Country Corner

Country Corner Country Corner is a deli, grocery store and community center, all in one.

One in an occasional series of stories about family-owned businesses in the community. By David Boyce Almanac Staff Writer West Menlo Park isn't lacking in community spirit at its own vital, if unofficial, center: the Country Corner deli and grocery store on Alameda de las Pulgas at Monterey Avenue. For neighborhood kids, it's a refuge stocked with candy, ice cream, a sense of home away from home, and even credit. For the gardeners and construction workers in the area for the day, the noontime line to the deli at the back of the store speaks to the popularity of the sandwiches and homemade salads. And for upscale shoppers, a $100 bottle of wine, a $50 bottle of 18-year-old single malt scotch, or a six-pack of micro-brewed ale are not hard to find. The store also stocks gourmet items, such as capers and imported olives along with canned goods and other staples. Tying it all together with bonhomie and energy to spare on any given weekday are owner Bob Wehab at the cash register and Edward, his younger brother, making the sandwiches. Also working in the deli every day are Bob's wife Nadia and Lila, a family friend. The food At least part of the experience of buying a deli sandwich is watching it being made. Edward knows this. "Let them look at something good," he says, speaking of customers looking over his shoulder as he works. Edward, who says he loves to serve people, says the most important factor in making a good sandwich is attitude. "Be well in yourself," he says. "You have to be calm. You have to have empty thoughts." Their most popular sandwich is the chicken filet with melted cheese and avocado on Dutch crunch bread, he says. The sourdough buns are big sellers too; they go through six dozen every day. The deli also has salads and other prepared foods for American, Russian, Mexican, Greek and Italian palates. Bob says his wife makes the salads in the morning, and that they have a reliable source of homemade pasta every day. In the morning, customers favor the Krispy Kreme donuts that Bob brings down every day from Daly City. He says that the secret to their popularity is in the way they're made. They're fried quickly in a shallow pool of vegetable oil, he says, and rely on sweetness rather than fat for their flavor. Looking back Bob and his brother were born in the town of Ramle, near Tel Aviv in central Israel. Of the current turmoil in Israel, Bob says: "It's ugly. It's really ugly." Both Bob and Edward are particularly concerned about the tense stand-off between the Israeli army and about 100 Palestinian gunmen and several monks and nuns taking refuge in Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity. The church is built on the location believed to be the birthplace of Jesus. They both attended services there many times as children, Bob says. Bob and his brother are of Greek heritage and were brought up as Christians, attending Catholic elementary school and Greek Orthodox high school. They came to the United States after high school and have been here ever since. Bob lives with his wife and four kids in Millbrae, while Edward lives in San Bruno. Building's history Bob bought the store nine years ago. He says that although the building is more than 100 years old, it would still be recognizable to a visitor from its early days when it was a carriage stop for ranchers. One big change is that it used to have four doors, one in each wall, to provide entryways at strategically placed horse hitching posts, Bob says. He says the store was a saloon for a while, and for a time it had a butcher shop in the back, with ovens and facilities for smoking the meat. Bob says that the building is unchanged because the county considers it to have some kind of historical significance, but the archivist at the county historical society says there is no record of such status being conferred on the building. The customers The store is popular with regulars. Bob says he has 1,500 regular customers come in every week. With traffic like that, it's not hard to pick out a stranger at the counter. Once in while, Bob says an underage kid with a fake ID will come in and attempt to buy alcohol or cigarettes. They don't get by him because he can identify such IDs when he sees them, even those with authentic-looking watermarks. He says he turns it back and forth in the light to make his determination. "Doesn't look good," he tells them. "You keep it." He says he tries to set a tone to discourage them. "You tell them 'No, no, no.' They never come back. They tell their friends, 'Don't go there.'" For all the cigarettes and alcohol available in the store, one would expect to see another popular vice: lottery tickets. But Bob doesn't sell them. His brother Edward comments: "The people around here are lucky enough." Occasionally, a neighborhood dog will come by. "They jump over the fence, they come straight here," he says. He says he keeps them in the backyard and calls their owners to come pick them up. With the daily influx of kids, parents, well-to-do home owners, gardeners and construction workers, the store is a destination for a wide range of customer cultures. Bob has a simple approach. "We treat all our customers equally, from little kids to 100-year-olds. Doesn't matter," he says. Age is no factor in determining creditworthiness, for example. The words, "Pay me next time," are frequently heard. And discounts of 10 to 15 percent are common for customers who buy in bulk, such as sports teams. Zack Heimbuck, a senior at Menlo School, likes the store because "they know you," he says. "It's like a little center in the community." Ruth Steinberg, a physician at Palo Alto Medical Foundation who lives in Menlo Park, says she visits the store every day with her kids on the way home from school. "This is just the best store," she says. "If you don't have enough money, you can pay them later." As a physician, Dr. Steinberg says she also likes the location of the store because it encourages a healthier lifestyle that involves walking to the store rather than driving. Bob says he gets up every day at 4:30 a.m. to drive to San Francisco and Daly City to pick up rolls and donuts. "It takes much discipline to run a store," he says. INFORMATION The Country Corner grocery store is located at 3207 Alameda de las Pulgas, at the intersection of Monterey Avenue. It is open daily from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., except on Sundays, when it closes at 7 p.m.

Y’all already know, right? @StGeorgeSpirits #StGeorge 🐉 🗡
05/19/2020

Y’all already know, right? @StGeorgeSpirits #StGeorge 🐉 🗡

Support #KathrynKennedyWinery stay alive!!! Beautiful wine and amazing wine maker! We love you Marty Mathis!!!!
05/16/2020

Support #KathrynKennedyWinery stay alive!!! Beautiful wine and amazing wine maker! We love you Marty Mathis!!!!

NOW AVAILABLE! The @paraduxxwine #WineryOnly (except the ProprietaryRed) here in the shop. Don’t wait!  @ Country Corner
05/15/2020

NOW AVAILABLE! The @paraduxxwine #WineryOnly (except the ProprietaryRed) here in the shop. Don’t wait! @ Country Corner

🌈 definitely sent by Sandy! ❤️❤️❤️
05/12/2020

🌈 definitely sent by Sandy! ❤️❤️❤️

Sandy !!!!! We love you and miss your face!!!! Thank you so so much for this! Truly brightened our day! 🌈☁️🌈☁️🌈☁️
05/11/2020

Sandy !!!!! We love you and miss your face!!!! Thank you so so much for this! Truly brightened our day! 🌈☁️🌈☁️🌈☁️

TOMORROW! SATURDAY MORNING DROP! WHILE SUPPLIES LASTOPEN @ 9:00am @ Country Corner
05/09/2020

TOMORROW! SATURDAY MORNING DROP! WHILE SUPPLIES LAST
OPEN @ 9:00am @ Country Corner

GRANNY’S BATCH #BookersBourbon JUST CAME IN
05/08/2020

GRANNY’S BATCH #BookersBourbon JUST CAME IN

A truly special bottle and limited to six at Country Corner: The 2015 X2 @paraduxxwine by @duckhornwine thanks to our fr...
05/07/2020

A truly special bottle and limited to six at Country Corner: The 2015 X2 @paraduxxwine by @duckhornwine thanks to our friends at the winery!!! Incredible find so come by the store if you miss going to the tasting room. 😭 @ Country Corner

Our #RyeWhiskey portfolio just got a little stronger! #AmericanWhiskey #WhiskeyNation
05/06/2020

Our #RyeWhiskey portfolio just got a little stronger! #AmericanWhiskey #WhiskeyNation

Some of the finer things in life brought to you by: @bulleitbourbonwhiskey 🥃
05/05/2020

Some of the finer things in life brought to you by: @bulleitbourbonwhiskey 🥃

Don’t forget your mask today and #MayTheForthBeWithYou
05/04/2020

Don’t forget your mask today and #MayTheForthBeWithYou

Wishing you all a Good Friday. These are troubling times but through all the despair and illness, we are tested by the l...
04/10/2020

Wishing you all a Good Friday. These are troubling times but through all the despair and illness, we are tested by the lord to come together and help one another. We pray for the sick to be healed, pray for the ones who are on the frontline to possess the strength of the Holy Spirit and for the ones who have passed to reborn and reunited in the kingdom on heaven. Amen🙏🏼🛐✝️💟🙏🏼

04/10/2020

Completely enclosed 🚫🦠 #NotTodayCovid #NotToday🧿 created by #DouglasConstruction

Huge shout out to our fam @eldougy #DouglasConstruction for building out Covid-19 Safety sneeze and cough barrier for th...
04/05/2020

Huge shout out to our fam @eldougy #DouglasConstruction for building out Covid-19 Safety sneeze and cough barrier for the register stand! Now we can keep ourselves safe and keep the community stocked up! #MenloisFamily 💪🏽 love you Chris

Friendly Reminder: The actions we all take during this pandemic can spread rapidly fast. This means good habits and also...
03/19/2020

Friendly Reminder: The actions we all take during this pandemic can spread rapidly fast. This means good habits and also careless habits. Leading by example can encourage others to do the same. The actions you take (just like COVID-19) are infectious. Us grocery stores and essential business employees are putting our selves at risk everyday to make sure the community is served. But, we are taking carful measures to maintain a clean store, offer services to foster a clean and safe environment and added new services to cater to those who need it. We ask that customers who come in to the store think about others who don’t advertise their health issues or who have loved ones with health issues. We must practice safe distancing and extreme hygiene. Championing these GOOD habits and educating others on risk factors can go a long way. We are a community and a family. We are in this together. If you need information on what you can do to foster an environment of good hygiene and education, check with your local government @cityofmenlopark and follow @who & @cdcgov or ask for Me! Issa @44andcloudy! Here to help! Stay safe everyone!

This label alone is just gorgeous! The wine will blow you away! @trionewinery
02/07/2020

This label alone is just gorgeous! The wine will blow you away! @trionewinery

Going live on @postmates in 5...4...3...2......
01/14/2020

Going live on @postmates in 5...4...3...2......

2020RAGE! 😂 HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE🥂 🍾 🎉
01/01/2020

2020RAGE! 😂 HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE🥂 🍾 🎉

Gotta match the Jordan’s 😎 🖤❤️🤍
12/31/2019

Gotta match the Jordan’s 😎 🖤❤️🤍

12/26/2019

Merry Christmas to this guy who’s using OUR dumpsters for HIS garbage and taking our firewood from our backyard ON CHRISTMAS NIGHT

12/10/2019

Mom saw this video and told me to stop embarrassing the family 😂

If you need something special for the holidays....
12/07/2019

If you need something special for the holidays....

Got a couple finally!
12/07/2019

Got a couple finally!

From our family to yours! 🦃
11/28/2019

From our family to yours! 🦃

Winter drop coming soon! Courtesy of @labseven.co #championhoodie #BlackTieDye
11/26/2019

Winter drop coming soon! Courtesy of @labseven.co #championhoodie #BlackTieDye

🇫🇷 🍷
11/23/2019

🇫🇷 🍷

Trying something new. (1 of 1) Bleach then color  @ Country Corner
11/15/2019

Trying something new. (1 of 1) Bleach then color @ Country Corner

🇺🇸To all that served🇺🇸
11/11/2019

🇺🇸To all that served🇺🇸

11/10/2019

I 😭 right now! I want!!!!

“Welcome to flavor town!” #CountryCorner @guyfieri
11/01/2019

“Welcome to flavor town!” #CountryCorner @guyfieri

#LiveinLevis #Bobs #MenloPark (work done by #Levis San Francisco)
10/03/2019

#LiveinLevis #Bobs #MenloPark (work done by #Levis San Francisco)

#ThreePalms #Merlot by @DuckhornWine THE ABSOLUTE BEST MERLOT IN THE WORLD! don’t @ me
10/03/2019

#ThreePalms #Merlot by @DuckhornWine THE ABSOLUTE BEST MERLOT IN THE WORLD! don’t @ me

I’m sure you remember this year very well @thejerryrice80! Come by, I’ll save you one! #GoldenEra @49ers  @ Country Corn...
10/01/2019

I’m sure you remember this year very well @thejerryrice80! Come by, I’ll save you one! #GoldenEra @49ers @ Country Corner

Big Fin and I large and in charge!
10/01/2019

Big Fin and I large and in charge!

Beer Box is Back up and running colder than ever thanks to @vartans_refrigeration ! Thank you to the whole squad that pu...
09/29/2019

Beer Box is Back up and running colder than ever thanks to @vartans_refrigeration ! Thank you to the whole squad that put us back in motion

Address

3207 Alameda De Las Pulgas
Menlo Park, CA
94025

Opening Hours

Monday 07:15 - 20:00
Tuesday 07:15 - 20:00
Wednesday 07:15 - 20:00
Thursday 07:15 - 20:00
Friday 07:15 - 20:00
Saturday 08:30 - 20:00
Sunday 09:30 - 17:00

Telephone

(650) 854-4260

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Best Deli in the West, by Govenment test
Ran into MPFPD engineers and fire fighters... they were eating their lunches prepared by Country Corner... they were munching in Woodside next to Robert's Market Deli.