On Friday, December 2nd, I was given the opportunity to interview Todd Mansfield, one of the owners of CoreLife Eatery, which is opening up a location here in Vestal next week. The Vestal restaurant, located in University Plaza, will be CoreLife's eighth location; this is impressive as their original restaurant, located in Syracuse, NY, first opened up shop in May 2015.

Todd is originally from the Binghamton area and noticed that it was difficult to find truly healthy food when eating out in the local area. Faced with a lack of options, he decided to create his own. He envisioned a restaurant that was affordable and had lots of choices, and where you could customize and create your own meals.

He was into the fast and casual design popularized by restaurants such as Chipotle and Panera, and most of all, he wanted the food to be clean, healthy, organic, and nutrient dense. Most of all, however, he wanted the food to taste good.

beer, wine, coffee
Claudia Miller

Why is CoreLife Different?

According to Todd, there is nothing quite like CoreLife in the Binghamton area. "There's nothing in here that isn't good for you," Todd says.

CoreLife doesn't use any processed food items and prides itself on using low amounts of sugar and sodium. The protein options at CoreLife are as close to natural as you can get, such as offering free-range chicken and grass-fed steak. Their chicken and beef bone broths, which are made from scratch with plenty of herbs and spices in addition to being super tasty, are loaded with a variety of healthy amino acids, proteins, and minerals. Everything is scratch made daily, and microwaves and freezers are never used.

CoreLife looks to speak to millennials. In Todd's words, CoreLife appeals to those who are concerned about where the food they are eating is coming from as well as those who are looking for allergy-sensitive, vegan and vegetarian-friendly food.

coffee, beer, tea
Claudia Miller

What You Can Eat

One of CoreLife's most unique aspects is it's house-made beverages. Instead of selling soda, CoreLife sells unique teas and lemonades that are made with fresh and tasty ingredients such as beets, blueberries, mint, and basil.

"We squeeze about 8,000 lemons per week. We came up with putting fruits and vegetables in a lemonade and worked on what tasted good. We came up with about four or five, and we can hardly keep them, they sell so well. They're also really great for you," Todd says of the beverages.

Todd's favorite item on the menu is the Thai Chicken and Rice Noodle grain bowl. He customizes the Asian-flavored bowl with spicy jalapeños, scallions, and onions as well as Sriracha in the Thai Cashew dressing in order to add his own twist. The great thing about CoreLife is that it allows you to customize your meal even if you choose from one of the pre-created options.

beer, cake, coffee, tea, wine
Claudia Miller

What You Can Do

Promoting a healthy and active lifestyle is one of CoreLife's main goals. In addition to doing this through the food that it offers, CoreLife integrates active activities into its location. CoreLife is tied into the yoga community and yoga classes are set to be offered at the Vestal location. According to Todd, yoga is simple and is about connecting with the earth, just like the food offered at CoreLife.

beer, pizza, coffee
Claudia Miller

CoreLife is new, but is expanding rapidly. Although there are currently stores just in New York and Ohio, locations are set to open up in Pennsylvania, Utah, Michigan, and Long Island, to name a few areas. As it expands, CoreLife looks to spread its message even further.

Come and See CoreLife for Yourself!

In order to introduce students at Binghamton University to all of what CoreLife offers, the restaurant in University Plaza is holding a "Student Day" on Wednesday, December 7th. From 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., students can enjoy a free meal in CoreLife's brand new location.

Be sure to check out the restaurant and its plethora of food and beverage options, including green bowls, grain bowls, and broth bowls as well as house-made teas and lemonades. Check out my other article about CoreLife and what I tried at the Syracuse location.

A big thank you to Todd, Danielle, and the entire CoreLife team for allowing me to get a first-peek inside the restaurant and to learn so much about all that CoreLife offers!