There is a new shopping center opening up two miles from my apartment. Literally two miles (I checked). It’s being anchored by Whole Foods, which in & of itself is enough to make he angels sing, but as new stores and restaurants are announced, I fall more and more in love. One of the reasons I’m so excited about this shopping center is the opening of Zoë’s Kitchen.
I’ve loved this place for ages, but we’ve never lived close to one. Now I have one literally two miles away. That could be a dangerous thing with some restaurants, but when I met with their manager for lunch last week, I learned he’s actually LOST weight since being with the company. I was invited by their manager to come have lunch, and to learn more about what Zoë’s is all about. And what I learned was impressive.
- Nearly EVERYTHING is made on site. They have a walk-in refrigerator, but their freezer is no larger than what we have in our own homes, and mostly just stores the pita. Other than the pita, everything is made in house. EVERYTHING. That delicious, tempting chocolate cake stacked by the register (that’s cruel to a someone dieting, btw ;)) is made from scratch in the restaurant. The manager showed me the kitchen, and I saw cans of chickpeas & containers of tahini for house made hummus
- They get shipments of fresh produce 4 times a week, to ensure that everything is fresh & delicious. They do use dried herbs, but honestly, so do I.
- The food is made to order. When the kitchen door was opened, I saw staff skewering the fresh veggies for kabobs.
- They are very accommodating to dietary issues. Whether you’re counting calories, or have dietary restrictions, they have plenty of things for you to choose from. That was probably what impressed me the most. Instead of being limited to a salad (which seems to be the only gluten free option at most places), they have a HUGE list of dishes that are gluten free. And they have a HUGE list of menu items that are less than 500 calories.
I’m so excited to have Zoë’s Kitchen so close now. This area is really growing, and I’m so glad that there is now a healthier option for those nights where I just do not feel like cooking.
If you’re in Hampton Roads, and have been living under a rock, this new shopping center is at the intersection of Jefferson & Oyster Point, and it’s absolutely beautiful! If you’re not in this area, check out their store locator to find the location nearest you.