Cava Mezze Grill is a fast-casual Mediterranean food chain. Based in Washington D.C., Cava Grill is beginning to expand and establish its presence on the west coast. Many people have referred to Cava as the “Mediterranean version of Chipotle.”

While the two enterprises share similar prices and assembly models, Cava Grill offers a unique and charming experience that remains interactive beyond the checkout counter. Cava’s delicious food in addition to their innovative personal marketing skills delivers a competitive brand that is worthy of its own spotlight. Here are just a few additional reasons why you should try Cava Mezze Grill:

1. It’s indisputably delicious

Cava Grill

Photo courtesy of Cava Grill

By featuring a menu that successfully marries traditional Mediterranean flavors with modern clean-eating concerns, Cava defines the odds and produces healthy food that actually tastes good. Their dishes offer a wide variety of flavors that are customizable to the customers preferences because of their design-your-own-meal model.

This assembly line production begins with the selection of a base. Options for the base include a pita wrap, grain bowls, salad, a mix of greens and grains, mini pitas, or mini pitas and soup. Next, the customer gets to select up to three dips or spreads to cover their base. This selection includes classic tzatziki, hummus, an eggplant and red pepper spread, their famous crazy feta dip, a spicy harissa, or red pepper hummus.

Customers also have a choice of protein between grilled chicken, light and crispy falafel, meatballs, braised lamb, spicy lamb meatballs, or the roasted seasonal vegetables. Additionally, there is a vast selection of toppings ranging from fresh mint to the delectable califlower quinoa tabbouleh. Finally, customers can select a dressing from yogurt dill, spicy harissa, lemon herb tahini, greek vinaigrette, or sriracha greek yogurt.

#SpoonTip: If you get a bowl, try the lemon herb tahini and ask for the Sriracha greek yogurt on the side

2. All the ingredients are locally-sourced

Cava Grill

Photo courtesy of Cava Cucumber Partner – Windset Farms

Cava Grill prides themselves on sourcing ingredients locally. You can see where their ingredients in the LA region come from here.

3. Cava Grill prides themselves on sourcing locally

Cava Grill

Photo courtesy of @cavagrill on Instagram

Since Cava gets all of their ingredients locally, their menu is heavily based on what is in season. While this means that the menu is everchanging, it also means the selection is much more fresh and exciting. To reflect the seasonal flavors, Cava features different soups, vegtables, and house-made juices and teas. For instance, the Winter juice and tea selection consists of beet lemonade, blueberry rosemary juice, blood orange green tea, kale apple cucumber ginger lemon juice, and pineapple apple mint.

4. Everything is customer conscious

The ability to tailor your meal goes beyond the topping selection, customization and knowing exactly what goes into your meal is a top priority at Cava. Not only do they make sure that all of their ingredients are fresh and high quality, but they also offer resources such as a nutrition calculator and allergen information to make sure that it is easy for all customers to find something that is healthful for them.

5. Cava products will soon be sold at Whole Foods

Cava Grill

Photo courtesy of @cavagrill on Instagram

Ever find yourself dreaming about that thing you ate last week? You just can’t get that one dish off your mind? Well no need to fret, thanks to Whole Foods, the solution to all of your Cava-inspired cravings will soon be avaliable at your fingertips. That’s right, Whole Foods features Cava dips and spreads in stores. You can find out where to get your hands on these irresistible goods here.

#Spoontip: Buy all of the Crazy Feta dips that you can get your hands on. You wont regret it, but the person behind you in line might.

6. The food is chef-inspired

Do you know who started Chipotle? Or how they came up with the concept for Subway? How many chain enterprises are known and still associated with their roots? The answers to the first two questions lie somewhere deep within the interned while the third question only brings one answer to mind, which you probably guessed, is Cava Mezze Grill.

Cava Grill was the result of three best friends and their ventures in the restaurant world back east. Three childhood friends Ike Grigoropoulos, Chef Dimitri Moshovitis, and Ted Xenhristos started Cava. They opened and actively operated three full-service restaurants, which eventually led to the creation of Cava, a more casual and modern experience of their traditional Greek and Mediterranean background.

The three men who started Cava are still involved with Cava. For example, Dimitri Moshovitis, worked as the chef in their first restaurant, Cava Mezze, and is still involved with the menu planning and selection today. Ike and Ted also remain present and active in the companies operations.

7. Cava is very involved in the community

Cava Grill

Photo courtesy of @cavagrill on Instagram

The people at Cava don’t just care about serving food; they want to know whom they are serving their food to. By incorporating personal marketing strategies and getting involved with local initiatives, Cava is striving to become more than just a store, but part of a community.

Some efforts that Cava has made to become involved with the community here in Los Angeles include working with local producer partners such as Sugarbloom Bakery and charitable partners like Garden School Foundation. To celebrate their partnership with these organizations, Cava sponsors a community day.

#Spoontip: Cava loves working with students, so find out how to partner with them here.

8. Cava is more than just a chain, it’s a brand

Cava Grill

Photo courtesy of Cava Grill

It’s about more than just the food at Cava Grill. In efforts to become part of and strengthen communities, Cava puts emphasis on group interaction and being active and healthy. They aim to provide people with a collective experience over food.

9. They have a kickass blog

The brand of the company is reflected in their blog. On this site you can find everything from Spodity playlists and Pinterest boards to reading recommendations and recipes. This blog lets you get a taste of what the company if all about, it adds character to a corporation.

From the food to the service, you get the quality of a local farm-to-table restaurant in a chain. So next time you find yourself walking down Broxton Avenue, trade out that burrito bowl for a Mediterranean grain bowl and find out what all the hype is about.

To celebrate their opening on March 17, Cava and their partner, the Garden School Foundation, will treat you and your friends to a free meal as a part of their community day initiative.

Cava Grill

Photo courtesy of Cava Grill