The Asian fast casual mogul, Pei Wei launched its brand new summer menu with a nutritional purpose last week, appealing to the health-conscious consumer. These temporary menu options will be available at the 200 Pei Wei stores nationwide.
The seasonal offerings features three new salads– including the Thai Steak& Mango salad, with wok-seared steak and mixed greens topped with avocado, grape tomato, mango, cucumber, scallions, mint, cilantro, crispy rice noodles, Thai basil– all tossed with a Chile-lime garlic vinaigrette dressing.
Avocado makes an appearance in another new salad– the Ahi Avocado Salad featuring Ahi tuna, mixed greens, avocado, cucumbers, Asian slaw, pickled gingers, toasted sesame seeds and crispy wontons topped with a wasabi vinaigrette.
All of the gourmet salads stay true to the Asian-inspired menu. The Vietnamese Rice Noodle Salad has wok-seared chicken with mixed greens, mint, pickled carrot, scallions, Thai basil, roasted peanuts, crispy onions, chilled rice noodles– all tossed with a Chile-lime garlic vinaigrette dressing. The Asian Chopped Chicken Salad has been updated for the summer menu, featuring hand-pulled chicken, mixed greens, carrots, red bell peppers, scallions, Thai basil, crispy wontons, sesame seeds topped with a ginger-sesame vinaigrette.
But, salads aren’t the only new offering. The chain will now be serving the Honey Sriracha Wings– crispy chicken wings that have been wok-tossed in a spicy honey sriracha sauce topped with scallions and sesame seeds.
The Focus on Healthy & Fresh Ingredients
The colorful salads are stocked with diverse Asian-themed ingredients. The brand is emphasizing that the salads not only have tasty ingredients, but they are nutritious– with antioxidant rich peanuts, heart healthy garlic and vitamin C rich chiles.
“We heard our guests loud and clear when they said they wanted innovative menu options geared toward taste and nutritional value,” said Clay Dover, chief marketing officer of Pei Wei in a press release. “Last season, our guests enjoyed the option of having their favorite Wok Classic menu items served over salad, and these four new menu options expand our salad offerings and deliver on Pei Wei’s focus on flavors with purpose.”
Pei Wei is also promoting that the salads are fresh and prepared entirely in house the day of, while the vegetables are given an extra wash prior to prep. They also subtly mention their food safety standards.
“We really drilled down on delivering thoughtful dishes with bright colors, layers of flavor and texture,” says Adam Schreier, director of culinary innovation at Pei Wei in a press release. “Each Pei Wei dish is prepared to order; our meat is butchered in-restaurant and vegetables are hand-washed and cut by our chefs daily.”
The Honey Sriracha Wings are quite different from the healthy salads, but so far they are performing well for the chain.
“We tested the wings in eight markets, including our home market of Phoenix. They did phenomenally well and we expect them to become a new fan favorite,” said Schreier.