Coming soon signage is up for Cava Digital Kitchen at 19865 Century Blvd in Germantown, which is replacing the recently closed Zoe’s Kitchen. CAVA opened their first Digital Kitchen in Sandy Spring, GA back in March. According to a social media posts by CAVA,  “CAVA Digital Kitchen has arrived… Just order ahead on our app or our site for easy pickup or delivery! Convenient *and* delicious. Build your bowl:”

CAVA, the fast-casual restaurant that started in MoCo, acquired Zoe’s and its 200+ restaurants in 2018 for approximately $300 million

In 2006, first-generation Greek-Americans Ike Grigoropoulos, Dimitri Moshovitis, and Ted Xenohristos launched the full-service Cava Mezze restaurant in Rockville, with Moshovitis as executive chef. Following the launch of four additional restaurants, in 2008, Xenohristos, Grigoropoulos, and Moshovitis launched a line of dips and spreads to over 200 stores, including Whole Foods Market. In 2009, Brett Schulman joined them as CEO and co-founder of the fast-casual chain Cava (originally called Cava Mezze Grill, later rebranded as Cava Grill and then simply as Cava). They opened the first Cava restaurant in Bethesda, in January 2011.


The first Feed the Fridge in Maryland is coming to 7315 New Hampshire Ave in Takoma Park this Friday. Feed the Fridge, started by Medium Rare’s, Mark Bucher,  places refrigerators in local communities and pays area restaurants to stock them daily with fresh meals. Their goal is to deliver 500,000 free meals in 2021. To learn more about Feed the Fridge, and to donate, visit

Olazzo and Cava Mezze are among the local restaurants that are participating.


The grand opening for Mezeh Mediterranean Grill at 19810 Century Blvd in Germantown will be on Wednesday, February 24th. Below you’ll find some of the opening day promotions:

Grand Opening deals:
On opening day – FREE bowl with the purchase of a drink
On opening day – $10 mezeh credit unlocked at checkout (must register)
On opening day – entry to win ‘free mezeh for a year
register for the grand opening here: germantown/

Mezeh Mediterranean Grill is a fast-casual eatery with a buffet-style of offerings that include rice and salad bowls, wraps and a variety of sauces and toppings.

Their other Montgomery County location is at 262 Crown Park Ave, in Gaithersburg.



Montgomery Mall Turns Outdoor Dining Area Into “Enchanted Forest”

Back in December we told you that Montgomery Mall (Westfield Montgomery) had converted part of its parking garage into an outdoor seating area.

It’s recently been upgraded with additional heaters,  hanging lights, and other forest themed decor.

Tables and chairs are properly spaced for social distancing.

The Enchanted Forest themed outdoor dining experience is located at the second level entrance of the food court, near CAVA.

Take a look below:

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Two Local Restaurant GMs Chime in on Delivery Apps in MoCo

On October 20, 2020, the Montgomery County’s Office of Consumer Protection (OCP) warned consumers of the fees that delivery apps charge local businesses. The Washington Consumers’ Checkbook, cited in a press release by Montgomery County, reported that the estimated fees for using Uber Eats, Grubhub, and DoorDash charged to businesses were 38% of total order costs.

“Many residents have been eager to support their local restaurants by getting take-out and delivery. I don’t think they realize how much some of these delivery services charge the restaurants,” said Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich in the press release.

After reading the report from the county, I reached out to two local restaurants for their opinions on delivery apps.

Wesley Yao, owner and general manager of Kusshi Sushi in the Pike and Rose neighborhood, talked to me about how delivery apps affected business. “My perspective on [using] multiple delivery apps is to view [the fees] they charge as paying rent. The reality is [restaurants] can’t afford NOT to utilize at least 1 or 2 of the apps.”

I also was able to speak with the general manager of Cava Mezze in Olney, Md, Lucas Georgiou, about his perspective. When I asked how delivery apps affected his business, he replied, “It definitely has a positive effect on our restaurant. It gives us a delivery option for guests that wouldn’t normally be able to come to the restaurant.”

Yao’s thoughts were the same as Georgiou, and said, “UberEats, GrubHub, and DoorDash have created a platform to create ease of ordering.” Since the pandemic began, ordering takeout offers not only convenience for customers but an option for people who are hesitant to eat out.

However, the high fees that delivery apps charge for their service can be costly for restaurants. When I inquired about fees from the service, Yao replied, “The fees hit me harder because our check averages range from $10-$300. So when I pay 33% on a $300 order it hurts me a lot more.” Though he added, “That being said I don’t think the fees are ‘unreasonable’ everyone needs to make a profit.”

Georgiou agreed with Yao, commenting, “You see less profit per order when you use a delivery app, but people who are using those apps are using them for a reason. They like the convenience and if you aren’t listed as an option you are more than likely losing out on that business.”

The potential profit from being on the delivery apps outweigh the fees for the service. Additionally, delivery apps provide a platform for restaurants and new customers. Yao had mentioned, “[Delivery apps] provide marketing to customers AND the drivers to deliver the food.”

When the pandemic began, countless local businsses across the country shut their doors. But delivery apps offer resturants an easy, contactless way to continue to serve customers. And in the end, the cost of restaurants sharing their profit with delivery apps is worth the business and convenience for customers that the apps provide.

As Georgiou put it, “Something is better than nothing.”


Cava Mezze is offering 10% off curbside pick-up as well as contactless delivery at all of its restaurants.

The restaurant group, started by MoCo guys Dimitri “Chef D” Moshovitis, Ted Xenohristos, and Ike Grigoropoulos, opened its first location in Rockville 14 years ago.

“We know that when you order food right now, you might prefer to receive a a no-contact delivery. This means the courier will receive your request to leave your food in a safe place of your choosing and alert you when it’s ready to be picked up.”

Cava Mezze has MoCo locations in Rockville and Olney with locations in Capitol Hill, Clarendon, and Baltimore. Sister restaurant Julii, located in Pike & Rose, will also be participating in the offer.

Updated with additional information from Zoe’s Kitchen Inc.
“The next chapter…” wrote founder and executive chef, Dimitri Moshovitis, this morning. Reuters reported that CAVA will be acquiring Zoe’s Kitchen Inc. for approximately $300 million (with backing from a group of investors that includes Panera Bread founder, Ron Shaich). The 261-unit Mediterranean brand announced August 17 it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Cava Group, Inc., the company behind one of the country’s fastest-growing chains. The combined companies will now have 327 restaurants in 24 states, and form a powerful duo in the booming Mediterranean fast-casual industry.

According to Reuter’s, CAVA will pay $12.75 per share (a 33% premium to the 8/16/18 closing price). CAVA opened its 64th fast casual restaurant in Potomac Yards in DC earlier this week. This deal could potentially bring them up to over 300 locations. the purchase will be financed through a significant equity investment in Cava led by Act III Holdings, the investment vehicle create by Ron Shaich, founder, chairman, and former CEO of Panera Bread, and take Zoes private. After closing, Shaich will serve as chairman of the combined company. Brett Schulman, current CEO of Cava, will take over the same role to “work closely with the existing leadership teams at Zoes Kitchen and Cava to oversee their growth and evolution.

There are currently 3 Zoes Kitchen locations in MoCo– In Gaithersburg, Germantown, and Park Potomac.


Montgomery County based Cava will open their 62nd location on Wednesday in Cabin John Village.

Cava is partnering with City Blossoms for their Community Day on Wednesday.  It will consist of tickets that can be redeemed for a free entree and juice for the first 150 people in line. Patrons will have the option to donate to City Blossoms when they redeem their free meal.

MoCo-based Cava and California Tortilla are both in the top 5 largest restaurant chains in the D.C. Metropolitan area.

In a list released by Washington Business Journal, Rockville-based Cava came in third. Cava had 50 restaurants overall (not including their full-service restaurants) and 27 in the metro area.

California Tortilla, also based in Rockville, has 47 total locations with 25 in the metro area.

Both MoCo restaurant chains plan on more growth in the near future.


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