She SAID: How Sweet It Is

Terri Kennerson

Healthy food isn’t exactly rare in a place like Los Angeles. Healthy food that’s fast and relatively inexpensive isn’t so rare either. Healthy food that’s organic, exciting, tasty, fast, and inexpensive…

Now you have my attention.sweetgreen4Sweetgreen has come to Los Angeles and Santa Monica, and with a little luck and a lot of work, there will be even more locations in the near future. Challenging the hipster staple Tender Greens, the small restaurant offers an interesting selection of salads and grains that would pique the interests of  even the most sophisticated palettes. The staff mix all manner of greens, nuts, grains and dressings sweetgreen1together for a result that is truly harmonious. No more digging into a salad and wondering if someone… ANYONE actually tasted the combination before declaring it worthy of a menu.

Sweetgreen was born in 2007, with a plan to source local and organic ingredients from area farmers, and forward a mission to make for a better planet. Their biggest hub is in Washington DC (the healthiest place in the country), and mostly along the East Coast. Southern California in particular is naturally attractive for a restaurant like Sweetgreen, and with good reason. We’re stereotypically known for trying just about anything once; and the healthier it appears to be, the more likely we are to line up for it… with a smile.

sweetgreen2But competition in a place like Los Angeles is nothing to smile about. There are no shortage of organic pit stops that feature everything from cold-pressed vegetable juices to (actually tasty) gluten-free desserts. And with Tender Greens easily at the front of the class for salad destinations, the folks at Sweetgreen have their work cut out for them. If the menu is any indication, they may not need to be worried.

Of note are the Rad Thai (organic arugula + organic mesclun, sprouts, carrots, shredded cabbage, spicy sunflower seeds, cucumbers, basil, citrus shrimp, spicy cashew dressing) and Hummus Tahina (shredded kale + chopped romaine, tomatoes, red onion, cucumbers, pita chips, local feta, housemade husweetgreen8mmus, baked falafel, cucumber tahini yogurt) salads. In fact, the latter might just convince a carnivore or two that vegetarians don’t actually sacrifice taste when they cut out the meat. Not only are the salads good; they keep. I kept the Hummus salad for 4 days (don’t you dare judge) and the greens were still crisp when I finally got around to digging into them.

And in true LA fashion, there’s even an online ordering function. Those of you who don’t want to be … seen … by the local paps making a dash for the salad spot, this app’s for you. And for the rest of us who are too lazy to battle LA traffic to satisfy a Rad Thai craving, just dial in and order up. Organic, Healthy, Interesting Fast Food is just a click away.

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