Tender Greens Offers More Than Just Fast-Casual Salads

Slow Cooked Beef Short Ribs Stew, Rainbow Carrots, Fingerling Potato, Celery, Onion ($10.50)

Tender Greens has not only been open for awhile, they’ve been rapidly expanding all over Southern California with each location employing unique, add-on menus onto a solid, base selection of salads, sandwiches and hot plates. And though they are filed under the “fast-casual” column that has been touted as a 2011 food trend, Tender Greens operates with all the sensibilities of a stand-alone rather than a chain. Or worse – a fad.

Happy Vegan Salad ($10.50)

I love having Tender Greens near my place as a healthy option should I run out of goods in my refrigerator. Their produce, sourced from Scarborough Farms, is as fresh (not so tender) as any you’ll find at a sit-down restaurant, though at Tender Greens you’ll appreciate the easy way of placing your order at the beginning of line, to pick your order up (and/or a number for the remainder) as you reach the cash register with a minimal wait. Consider it an upscale cafeteria. I like the no-nonsense, and since it saves a few bucks off my check while I can get some solid nourishment, I know what I came for.

On to the “add-on” specials being offered at each location. In West Hollywood, they’re offering one-pots that change daily. I had the opportunity awhile back to try the roast of the day, a slow-cooked beef ribs stew, and devour it I did. It’s a great way to mix the menu up should you feel like deviating from the trusty Happy Vegan (with farro wheat with cranberry, green hummus tabbouleh, hazelnuts quinoa with cucumber and beets and lettuce) – my favorite salad here despite my lack of vegan status. I’m always smitten when the healthiest item on the menu also happens to be the dish I love.

Aztec Brownie ($3)

So go to Tender Greens in West Hollywood and get your one pot on. See what’s in store for the day. Or, if you’re feeling like fitting them  into your warmer weekend calendar – or are just looking for a good excuse to partake in a whole animal roast – schedule Tender Greens Hollywood for the last Sunday of the month beginning April 24th (Easter).

In a special event spearheaded by avid home brewer, Chef Eric Hulme, Tender Greens will welcome Tustin Brewing Company into the space on Sunday, April 24th and together they will be cooking up a whole roasted lamb in the restaurant’s caja china – a Cuban roasting box. For $35 per person, you’ll get to enjoy your Whole Lamb Roast with sauces and sides, beer and dessert on the back patio of the Hollywood location. It also includes tax. Reservations are required, so be sure to contact [email protected] to claim your spot.

With plenty of selections on the menu that aren’t just healthy – they’re also delicious - and even special events and items at the individual locations, everyone should experience Tender Greens at least once. Easter is a great opportunity, but I’m pretty sure I’ll be by beforehand since it’s a neighborhood staple. (In case you were wondering, the Aztec Brownie is a solid dessert choice which masquerades as a flourless chocolate cake – it’s good.)

All food and drink were hosted.

One-pots available in WeHo

Tender Greens
8759 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069
310.358.1919

Whole lamb roast in Hollywood: Sunday, April 24th, 2011 from 5 – 9 PM

Whole animal roasts every last Sunday for Spring and Summer

Tender Greens
6290 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90028
323.382.0380