Ask any college student who is from the Washington D.C. area what their favorite restaurant is and almost every person will answer Cava. Cava opened in the mid 2000's in D.C. with a mission to bring quick Mediterranean-inspired food to the area. Now, walk into any Cava around lunchtime during the week and there's a line out the door. Their quick service concept is similar to Chipotle: choose a base followed by a protein, and endless toppings. Cava's unique twist on the concept comes with its offerings of spreads such as hummus and tzatziki, proteins including falafel and braised lamb, and toppings such as tabbouleh and pita crisps. Washingtonians are obsessed with Cava's food, and the chain has recently begun expanding to the west coast. There are even rumors of Cava joining the new shops in the USC Village next year. As a born and raised Washingtonian, I couldn't be more excited. After spending years to perfect my order, here are some of my favorite parts about Cava.

The Variety of Healthy Options

Kendall Green

Cava brings a healthy spin to quick service with its different lettuce choices, grilled meats, and multiple veggie options to top the bowls with. The toppings are unlimited, so get as many as you can fit on top of your bowl. Add supergreens, a mix of brussel spouts, broccoli, kale, chicory, and cabbage, or tomato and cucumber salad to your bowl for a punch of nutrients. There are even dressings to put on top of the bowls with Mediterranean ingredients such as tahini and harissa. Try the Sriracha greek yogurt for a spicy kick.

Commitment to Local Ingredients

cake, tea, pizza, coffee, beer
Kendall Green

Cava uses local ingredients from farms in the area for their products. Their dips, including hummus, tzatziki, and crazy feta, are made locally and are even sold in Whole Foods Markets. When you walk into any Cava on either the east or the west coast, you'll find a list of all the different farmers that Cava gets their local ingredients from. 

Perfect Meal to Share with Friends

Kendall Green

Cava can be taken on the go, or can be enjoyed there since there's plenty of seating room within the restaurant. I took one of my friends from Chicago who had never even heard of Cava before and after one bite she was immediately converted into a Cava fanatic. One of her favorite parts was the fresh juices and teas that change seasonally and are the perfect addition to any meal. So whether you're looking for a quick meal on the go, or to take a break from the craziness of the day with friends, Cava is your place to go.