Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill: Hail fellow, well-Med!
The portobello mushroom plate with extra grilled eggplant at Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill.
Colorado is the birthplace of a number of popular chains, including Noodles & Company, Smashburger and that golden child, Chipotle Mexican Grill; we're definitely ahead of the curve when it comes to the growing fast-casual movement.
And also when it comes to the growing group of fast-casual chains that emphasize healthy eating. Chains like Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill, for example.
Pita bread can't get any fresher than this.
The fast-casual, or "fast-caz," trend in this country is on the rise, with diners craving freshly prepared dishes with a lean calorie count that are reasonably priced -- and available when they want them. These demands used to add up to a tall order, but thanks to the ingenuity of outside-the greasy-box entrepreneurs like Garbanzo founder Alon Mor, today customers really can get everything they want. In Denver, at least.
While Laura Shunk was on vacation last week, I went out on a special Jenn in Chains assignment to learn how Mor turned his tahini dreams into delicious babaganoush for the masses, building a chain of restaurants that focuses on serving healthy, fresh, fast-casual Middle Eastern food.
How did he do it? Find out tomorrow, when my piece is published here.
Get the Dining Newsletter
The week's top local food news and events, plus interviews with chefs and restaurant owners, dining tips, and a peek at our print review.