PLANO, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Zoës Kitchen (NYSE: ZOES), a fast-casual Mediterranean restaurant group, announced the opening of its new restaurant prototype design in Raleigh, N.C., tomorrow, January 16, 2018. Located at 6004 Falls of Neuse Road, Suite 100, the prototype includes a variety of new features designed to enhance guests’ dining experience, provide more convenience offerings and appeal more broadly to dinner guests. The company held a private preview party last week to unveil the new space.
“We are devoted to innovating around what our guests want even before they know they want it as we continue to maintain our status as the leader in the Mediterranean fast-casual space,” said Kevin Miles, President and CEO, Zoës Kitchen. “As we stay ahead of consumer demand, we’re proud to debut this next generation prototype restaurant that will further enhance our guest experience. This will be a great testing ground for us as we look at rolling out new stores and remodeling existing stores in the future, as well as for new menu and beverage items.”
The prototype unites a balance of form and function with a modern Mediterranean feel to the space. The design and layout is intended to engage guests’ senses with a larger view into the kitchen, where they can watch their dishes be made and smell the flavorful aromas that are associated with Mediterranean cooking.
“The space has more Mediterranean cues than our current restaurants and is designed to feel as if we’ve invited them into our home,” Miles continued. “You’ll see an open kitchen where guests can see their fresh Mediterranean dishes being prepared from scratch, and lighting and seating that we believe will evoke a warm, comfortable environment for lunch and dinner. The patio is also a very important element because it’s more integrated into the dining experience and really celebrated as a fun and exciting area to enjoy your meal. From an operational perspective, there’s a new to-go area that will allow guests to more conveniently find and pick up their online or call-in orders and for us to stage large catering orders. We’ve also created efficiencies in the kitchen that we believe will improve speed of service.”
The new look and feel of the restaurant showcases distinctive interior and exterior features, including:
- A variety of mixed materials using steel, stone and tile elements.
- A lit ZK tower featuring the brand’s iconic stripes.
- Covered patio that is integrated into the dining experience and is conditioned with heating and cooling systems.
- Tiled patio benches with integrated planter boxes.
- Painted patio flooring to represent the Mediterranean Sea.
- Exterior mural wall highlighting the 21 countries of the Mediterranean.
- Dynamic lighting that guides guests through the queue line with the brand’s stripes running along the ceiling.
- Color palette that highlights calming greens, beige and white with pops of bright color throughout, as well as different textures in flooring, fabrics and wall treatments.
- Spanish floor tile modeled after encaustic tiles that have graced the floors of European and Moroccan buildings for centuries.
- Unique high-top community tables and a variety of interesting seating options to accommodate different-sized groups.
- Custom artwork through the restaurant, including signature branding messaging such as “Live Mediterranean” that’s executed in large red channel letters on the main wall.
The new store is also the first in the company’s system to test a new better-for-you beverage program. Zoës Kitchen Chef Antonio Iocchi, Head of Culinary Innovation, has handcrafted the new program featuring all natural drinks including Tangerine and Turmeric Fresca, Fig and Vanilla Cooler, Blackberry Mint Refresher and a new Hibiscus Karkade Tea. The prototype also has new wine on tap, as well as beer offerings. A new made-to-order Moroccan sangria is available as well. Additionally, Zoës will test cooler beverages including kombucha and cold brew coffee.
Additionally, the prototype store will launch with the company’s new baked falafel, which has been in test in select restaurants across the country and is planned for systemwide launch late next month. The new falafel will be available to add to salads, pitas and bowls.
A new uniform program, which features taglines such as, “Fresh Made Mediterranean,” “Love Life Live Zoës” and “Eat What You Love, Love How You Feel” complete the prototype. Individuals interested in careers with Zoës Kitchen can visit zoeskitchen.com/careers to apply for open positions. Prior to the restaurant opening, guests can follow the latest in Zoës news through social media, the Zoës Life blog, or by signing up for Zoë-mail.
About Zoës Kitchen
Founded in 1995, Zoës Kitchen is a fast-casual restaurant group serving a distinct menu of made-from-scratch, Mediterranean-inspired dishes delivered with warm hospitality. With no microwaves, or fryers, grilling is the predominate method of cooking along with an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh herbs, olive oil and lean proteins. With 245 locations in 20 states across the United States, Zoës Kitchen delivers goodness to its guests by sharing simple, tasty and fresh Mediterranean meals that inspire guests to lead a balanced lifestyle and feel their best from the inside out. For more information, please visit www.zoeskitchen.com, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or follow #livemediterranean.