Driver's Market in Sausalito

The sandwich genius: Alex Hayden

Alex Hayden joined Driver’s a couple of months before it opened, and runs our deli section. “The deli is my brainchild,” says the Sausalito native. His late grandfather, Sterling, starred in 35 movies and lived in Sausalito until his death in 1986. His mom when pregnant with Alex worked as a cashier at Real Foods, which occupied the Driver’s space for many years, standing a few feet from where Alex works today.

Alex is proud to be part of what he calls “an incredible team,” and proud of everyone’s focus on detail and the products on offer. “We’re constantly auditing the products we put on our shelves. There’s nothing on sale here that I wouldn’t eat myself or feed to my family.”

The deli’s array of offerings continues to expand. In August 2014, the department began offering its own line of “grab’n’go” salads, prepared in-store daily from original recipes. “Our chef is awesome, taking our recipes and putting his own spin on stuff,” Alex says.

He loves the role Driver’s is playing in a changing Sausalito. “There are people who come into the store three times a day,” he says. “When I was growing up here there weren’t a lot families. It’s so cool to see so many here and I love it when their kids come in to get a bagel or whatever. It’s really special for me.”

We think some of the regulars come back often for Alex’s signature creations. He’s been cooking since he was 10, and cites a long trip to Southeast Asia and the sub-continent as a big influence. Hence the “Nepalito,” his creation fusing chef Binita Pradhan’s Ghurkha chicken with California flavors like avocado and pico de gallo. Bini got her start as part of San Francisco’s La Cocina incubator program. Alex and the whole Driver’s team are especially proud of their collaborations with entrepreneurs who share their values and approach.

Alex's creation: The infamous Nepalito