A chalkboard on the wall of the new Sweetgreen location a block from Rittenhouse Square lists the farms that supply the ingredients to the popular farm-to-table eatery. Weaver's Orchard in Berks County supplies apples. Toigo Orchards in Cumberland County provides grape tomatoes. Organic tofu, cage-free eggs and turkey all also come from suppliers within the state of Pennsylvania.
"We value seasonal, locally sourced food and we work with farmers and growers in each region to build out our menu," said Jonathan Neman, cofounder and co-CEO of Sweetgreen. "We work with local farmers we know and trust to provide us with delicious and healthy options throughout the year."
Sweetgreen set up their location, with seats for 36, inside the former Chestnut Dollar Store at 18th and Chestnut with two wide skylights overhead, reclaimed wood chairs and tables and a stripped down interior design that's part of Sweetgreen's philosophy of "getting back to the basics," they say.
Related link: Three favorite dishes from Sweetgreen's new fall menu
In an odd touch old-fashioned wooden school bleachers line one back wall.
"We're excited to open our largest location in Philadelphia," Neman said. "We're looking forward to offering our guests a larger and more centrally located space, and the response from the neighbors has been overwhelmingly positive."
Future touches to come include a photo from a planned shoot at Weaver's Orchard, and a seasonally inspired mural by a local artist.
Related link: Sweetgreen opens Center City location
The menu currently includes hearty autumn specials like an apples, pears and cheddar salad, and curry cauliflower and quinoa.
Metro got a chance to sample the quinoa and its as fresh as you'd imagine a meal sourced from local farms to be. The organic ingredients give you the sense of having not just a home-cooked but a homegrown meal.
"Walking into a Sweetgreen feels special — it's an experience, it's a destination and there's a sense of community. The decor, the music, the fresh food and our amazing team members work together to create a unique experience for each of our guests," Neman said.
Neman said 100 percent of proceeds on opening day will go toward their "Sweetgreen in Schools" program's partnership with Albert Greenfield School, to help the school host free farmstands for kids and the neighborhood.