In a city full of Mediterranean options, one franchise has arrived in Wichita feeling they can offer something just different enough to entice foodies to give their place a try over the competition. Zoe’s Kitchen, based out of Birmingham, Alabama, officially opens Friday, December 15 at 11am. We stopped in the day before the opening to give readers a little glimpse of what to expect on their first visit.
1441 N Webb Rd
Wichita, KS 67206
Open Daily 11am – 9pm
Zoe’s Kitchen is a fast casual concept that serves made-from-scratch Mediterranean food at a great value. They use whole grains and fresh produce. Nothing there is fried or cooked in a microwave. They also offer plenty vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options. Sitting in the same strip as Whole Foods, Lululemon, Pure Barre, and Orange Theory, they are really fitting in with the whole healthy concept in that area. Oh wait, I can’t forget about Plaza Wine and Spirits as I consider drinking to be healthy too.
Most of the menu ranges in the $7-12 range which is one of the more affordable options to dine at in the Waterfront. The 3,000-square foot space offers a lot in terms of seating. With it being fast casual, you order at the counter, are given a number, and the food is brought out to you when it’s ready.
While my friends and I went during the soft opening, the ticket times were fairly quick for how busy they were for the initial test run. We’ve been to plenty of soft openings and Zoe’s Kitchen was very smooth. Here’s a look at what we ordered:
One thing not pictured was the pita chips and the basil pesto hummus. My cousin was raving about how delicious the pita chips were. She loved them more there than any other Mediterranean restaurant she’s been to in town. Having the cucumber slices along with the pita bread was also a nice variation and break from the monotony of all things pita. While the hummus was not out of this world great, it was still delicious enough to warrant future visits.
We ordered a multitude of entrees. Most meals are also served with two sides; your choice of white beans, fresh fruit, roasted vegetables, potato salad, pasta salad, rice pilaf, marinated slaw, and side greek salad. You also get your choice of one of their specialty sauces: Greek tzatziki (a creamy yogurt sauce), Israeli skhug (a citrus sauce), Moroccan harissa (red pepper sauce), and Italian salsa verde (fresh herb sauce).
Of all our meals, only one stuck out as bad; the steak kabobs. The steak was very tough and chewy. The flavor just wasn’t there. It was a big miss for Zoe’s Kitchen. To make up for it though, the chicken and shrimp kabobs were far better. The fresh grilled chicken and charbroiled shrimp were both excellent, seasoned well and cooked to perfection.
Portion sizes were excellent for the money; a great value as stated earlier. My friend who had the Greek salad commented how it was a great meal for roughly $7 and one he couldn’t even finish. Another friend loved how all the meals weren’t too crazy or zany as he’s a pretty “safe eater”. He found them to be basic enough that he would go back over and over.
The Greek Dressing, placed at every table, was also a big hit with everyone. One friend mentioned it was possibly better than most places around town.
Outside of the steak kabobs, the meals were light, fresh and delicious. You could tell there was a distinct difference in the quality of ingredients compared to other fast casual restaurants. They didn’t skim on quality at all and it showed in the food.
If you’re a dessert fan, the house-baked lemon cookie is a must!
Honestly we didn’t know what to expect going in as most of us had never been to a Zoe’s Kitchen. Other people I knew were raving about how delicious it was but I reserved judgment until I could try it for myself. After we did, we were immediate fans and could see this being a huge hit in the Waterfront area.
We are looking forward to seeing how they grow in the community and if foodies buy into the concept. There are other fast casual Mediterranean restaurants like Meddy’s that could suffer if Zoe’s does very well which is possible.
Give this one a try yourself and enjoy the newest restaurant to arrive in Wichita.
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