Tender Greens is a fast casual restaurant that combines a fine dining hospitality with a casual, quick dining atmosphere. The restaurants chain serve fresh, healthy, chef-inspired, farmer’s market dishes at an affordable price in a relaxed environment. Instead of going for lunch at McDonald’s and killing yourself, you spend a few extra bucks for a much healthier lunch at Tender Greens.
To ensure maximum food quality and freshness, Tender Greens source all their produces from local farmers and ranchers. The veggies used for the salads were picked from the farm in the morning and served to you the same day. This dedication to food quality and freshness has made Tender Greens extremely successful. The chain currently has 21 restaurants in California, with more on the way. We had lunch at the Irvine Spectrum location.
Like all fast casual restaurants, lunch begins by lining up to order. The menu is divided into big plates and big salads. Both are $11.50. Plant based side dishes and soups range from $5.00 to $5.50. For the kids, there’s a little big plate for $6.50. I went with the salt and pepper chicken big plate and Oscar decided to try the herb brushed Albacore tuna.
The big plates can be served as a sandwich, a hot plate (what we went with), or on a simple salad. When ordered as a hot plate, the dish comes with yukon gold mashed potatoes, garlic herb crostini, and your choice of simple salad. I went for the Tender Greens salad with sherry vinaigrette, and OMG! It was one of the freshest salads I’ve ever tasted. The chicken was tender and full of flavor. This is one of the best lunches I’ve ever had.
You can’t call your restaurant Tender Greens and not have a green drink. It was juiced from kale, spinach, cucumber, and other green veggies. If green is not your thing, they have juices in other colors. Or you can go for a nice glass of California wine or beer.
Tender Greens is uniquely California. It will take a while before they expand outside the sunshine state, so if you’re ever in California, make sure you stop by and check them out. I’ll be adding Tender Greens to my list of Dot Com Lunch approved dining spots.
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