Move over Chipotle and Dig Inn; there’s a new fast-casual restaurant in town, one where customers can build their own pita, salad, or grain bowls topped with dips, spreads, proteins, and dressings — in all more than 50 choices.
CAVA was started in a chef’s kitchen by three childhood friends, Ike Grigoropoulos, Chef Dimitri Moshovitis, and Ted Xenohristos. The three took the flavors of their families’ traditional Greek and Mediterranean cooking and gave them a modern spin, opening up their first full-service restaurant in 2006. The spot was so popular that it inspired its own line of premium dips and spreads, now available at more than 200 Whole Foods Market locations across the country.
“Aside from being healthy and crave-able, our menu is created to deliver an ultra-personalized experience for each and every guest,” says Meg Schiffman, Director of Marketing.
In 2011, they opened the first fast-casual CAVA restaurant location. Since then, the Washington, DC-based company, backed by AOL co-founder Steve Case, has seen tremendous growth. Since the beginning of this year, the company has grown from 23 to 40 restaurants with outposts now across three major markets.
“Greenwich marks our first restaurant in Connecticut, and as we’ve started to build a loyal customer base in the New York area, Greenwich felt like a natural extension to a community that values convenience and healthy, delicious food,” says Schiffman.
Both CAVA Greenwich and Rye Ridge are bright and open. The staff operates in an assembly line format where meals are customized and you can take it to go or sit at the tables. Choose between salad or grain bowls and pita sandwiches, then make your way down the line, selecting from dips like roasted red pepper hummus, jalapeño-infused feta, and tzatziki made with imported Greek yogurt, and then proteins like spicy lamb meatballs, braised beef, and falafel.
In addition, CAVA has teamed up with nonprofit organizations to help local communities champion healthy eating and urban gardening skills. Through these partnerships, CAVA hopes to cultivate relationships with their neighbors and create opportunities for kids to grow and learn in healthy environments. “For us, food is a force for good,” says Schiffman.
3 Rye Ridge Plz, Rye Brook
129 West Putnam Ave, Greenwich
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