Veggie Grill to Expand to the East Coast With First NYC Store

The fast casual chain known for its veggie-centric bowls, Veggie Grill has announced that it's expanding to the east coast with a new store in New York City's trendy Flatiron District.

The concept has 31 total stores in California, Oregon, Washington, and Illinois, but will be soon feeding the NYC masses bold yet healthy food starting spring of 2019.

The west-coast based chain launched in the Midwest with a Chicago location earlier this year. But the management team felt it was time for the fast casual to set up some roots in The Big Apple.

“The expansion of Veggie Grill to the East Coast could not come at a better time,” said Steve Heeley, Veggie Grill CEO in a press release. “Plant-based food and clean eating continues to be a growing trend, especially in big cities, so New York City is a very exciting opening for us and we look forward to joining the community there.”

The chain's menu, where vegetables take the center stage, is seasonal with plant-based favorites like the Mediterranean Supergreens Salad and Santa Fe Crispy Chickin’, Sonoran Bowl. The brand has also partnered with a company on the rise Beyond Meat and serves the VG Beyond Burger on its menu.

Earlier in the year, Veggie Grill made two new hires to help foster the brand's rapid growth. Tim Welsh, VP of Real Estate and Development, has been leading the efforts to achieve the brand's lofty goal of doubling its stores by 2020. Then the fast casual also hired the vegan food expert Kajsa Alger to be the director of culinary innovation to develop new menu items.

Back in 2015, we visited the veggie-focused brand on the west coast. Watch the video below to learn about how the chain developed its unique menu from the former Chief Energizing Officer.

Danny Meyer's Fund Invests in Goldbelly

Enlightened Hospitality Investments (EHI), Danny Meyer's Union Square Hospitality Group's fund, is making another investment in the food space, but this time it isn't a restaurant.

The online food marketplace Goldbelly announced that with the help of EHI, the company has raised $20 million in Series B funding.

"We are thrilled to partner with Danny and the team at Enlightened Hospitality Investments and to join their great portfolio of brands who are unified by shared values of hospitality and a commitment to providing a stronger emotional connection to food," said Joe Ariel, founder & CEO of Goldberry "At Goldbelly, we believe that the country's greatest foods are made by passionate regional food makers and artisans. We've created a platform to empower these iconic local brands to connect with food lovers across the country, and look forward to enabling more people to enjoy these magical food experiences around the country."

Goldbelly appeals to passionate foodies looking to either try an iconic food item from a specific city or to have a famous city food offering yet again. The online marketplace features gourmet one-of-a-kind food products and gifts from legendary restaurants, bakeries, and delis that are available for shipping nationwide.

Some of the purveyors on the online marketplace include Chicago's Lou Malnati's Pizza, Philadelphia's Tony Luke's, Pittsburgh's Primanti Brothers, Texas's Salt Lick, Nashville's Prince's Hot Chicken, and many other beloved food concepts.

Goldbelly, formerly headquartered in San Francisco, recently opened a new headquarter office in New York City and renowned restaurateur Meyer will join the company's advisory board.

"Enlightened Hospitality Investments is passionate about finding category disruptors, particularly when their business and culture leverage technology to provide exceptional hospitality," said Meyer. "Goldbelly does just that, conveniently fulfilling nostalgic cravings for hometown favorites. Joe Ariel and his team have created something very special, as evidenced by Goldbelly's devoted following and inspiring culture. We look forward to working together to share the gift of Goldbelly with as many food lovers as possible."

With Meyer's backing, Goldbelly's traffic is sure to skyrocket. Do you think the website is fulfilling a need in the e-commerce space?

Read more about Meyer’s investment in Goldbelly at “Business Insider.

CBD-infused Cocktails, Ice Cream, and Desserts are on the Rise

CBD-infused Cocktails, Ice Cream, and Desserts are on the Rise

As the Cannabis industries are booming in states where the psychoactive drug is legal to sell, in non-legal states CBD is on the rise.

Legal CBD, known scientifically as cannabidiol, is also derived from the hemp plant but is unlike marijuana because CBD contains just a hint of THC, meaning it doesn't give you a "high."

CBD usage has become popular due to its multiple health benefits. 

“CBD has wonderful anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety, anti-insomnia and pain management benefits, and is incredibly safe and effective,” said Brooke Alpert, an Upper East Side nutritionist to "amNewYork."

With that being said, we are seeing more CBD-infused food offerings show up on menus. 

The bar The Breslin at the Ace Hotel in New York is selling CBD brownies and cocktails. But, this bar isn't the only food business in the city jumping on the CBD-infused bandwagon. 

Read More

Top 10 NYC Breweries: July 2018

Top 10 NYC Breweries: July 2018
  • These NYC breweries are anything but ordinary.

  • Home to 38 breweries, here are the ones you don’t want to miss.

It’s no secret that New York City has a plethora of places to eat. Foodable Labs has recently ranked the top 25 of the best restaurants. But what about breweries?

New York City is currently home to 38 breweries and growing. Before Prohibition caused the end of brewing in NYC, the city was once a prime brewing location in the 19th century. Fun fact: the first commercial brewery in North America was built on what is now Manhattan’s Stone Street.

So what are some great spots to check out?

Read More

Hot Products From the Summer Fancy Food Show That Should Be on Your Radar

Hot Products From the Summer Fancy Food Show That Should Be on Your Radar

After spending three days on the trade show floor at this year's Summer Fancy Food Show, we came across thousands of specialty and fine food products. 

But some stood out more than the rest. Here are some of our hot product picks that especially impressed us with their innovative formula and taste. 

Red Root & Co

Let's face it, the quality of a craft cocktail relies on the quality of ingredients. That's where companies like Red Root & Co comes in.

Known for its craft small batch infusions, Red Root & Co sells a variety of plant-based tonics, beverages, vinegars, teas, and more. 

Like most artisanal companies, the Red Root name and its story says a lot about the company. 

Read More