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East Coast Mediterranean restaurant selects Uptown for Dallas debut

East Coast Mediterranean restaurant selects Uptown for Dallas debut

Cava downtown Austin
Uptown gets more healthy Mediterranean food. Photo courtesy of Cava

A fast-growing Mediterranean chain from the Northeast is coming to Dallas: Called Cava, it'll debut in Uptown Dallas, in a spot adjacent to Spaces, the coworking company on McKinney Avenue which also happens to be World Headquarters for CultureMap Dallas.

According to a representative from the company, the restaurant will open in mid-2019.

Cava started out as a full-service restaurant in Rockville, Maryland, in 2006. The concept was founded by three childhood friends — Ike Grigoropoulos, Chef Dimitri Moshovitis, and Ted Xenohristos, are they Greek much? — to celebrate the flavors of their families' traditional Greek and Mediterranean cooking in a casual modern setting, dedicated to fresh, Mediterranean-inspired, better-for-you cuisine.

When it comes to food, Greeks know what's up.

The chain has since evolved into a fast-growing, fast-casual brand with more than 70 restaurants in Los Angeles, New York, Austin, Boston, and Washington, DC, its home base.

Cava also has a packaged goods line, including dips and spreads that are sold in grocery stores such as Whole Foods Market.

The restaurants' menu is customizable. You start with a base from a selection of salads, bowls, or pita bread.

Salad options include "SuperGreens," arugula, spinach, Romaine, or "SplendidGreens." Grain options include saffron basmati rice, brown basmati rice, or black lentils.

You get a choice of up to three dips from a selection that includes eggplant and red pepper dip; tzatziki (Greek yogurt); “crazy feta” infused with jalapeno; hummus; harrissa; or red pepper hummus.

Proteins include falafel, meatballs, spicy lamb meatballs, braised beef, grilled chicken, braised lamb, or roasted vegetables.

Other toppings include Kalamata olives, pickled onions, cabbage slaw, pearl couscous, and cauliflower-quinoa tabbouleh.

There are also juices and teas, and seasonal items such as a creamy date vinaigrette, pairing Mediterranean dates with mustard and garlic.

Dallas is lucky to have other, similar concepts that have opened in recent years, including Chicago-based Roti Modern Mediterranean, which opened in Uptown in 2018 just a block away from where Cava will open.

There are currently three locations of Cava in Texas, all in Austin, where they opened in 2018.

Cava had already made inroads into Dallas-Fort Worth in August when it acquired the Plano-based Zoës Kitchen Inc. chain. In November, Cava CEO Brett Schulman said that, "with this acquisition, Cava will be able to broaden our geographic footprint and meet the needs of even more guests."