By Nicole Bayne
BOWL’D, a new addition to the fast-casual health-food market opens in Arlington this Saturday. Owner Allen Reed may have an MBA from The Wharton School’s health care program, but he says, “I have always been an entrepreneur at heart.”
Reed created BOWL’D after 20 years of consulting for owners and CEOs of leading health care companies, saying his concept is “intended to address health much earlier in the continuum.” He wants to take care of his guests, especially those who need convenience but aim to stay healthy.
“The biggest inspiration was my personal struggle as a busy professional running around hungry. I really wanted to eat something delicious and would fuel me up but something I didn’t regret eating an hour later,” says Reed . “That is what BOWL’D offers.”
There are five modifiable signature bowls, and customers can also pick from a selection of grilled and marinated meats, lightly cooked vegetables, fresh herbs and housemade sauces on rice, quinoa or greens. The Mediterranean, Southwestern and Asian-inspired bowls will be prepared in the kitchen, not out front like Chipotle.
Reed says vegetarians should try the Mediterranean Bowl ($7.75) with short grain brown rice and broccoli, red bell peppers, cremini mushroom, red onion, carrots, garbanzo beans and feta cheese drizzled with tomato-olive sauce. A meaty favorite is the Smokey Tomatillo Bowl ($8.75) with a short grain brown rice base, beef (Australian grass-fed beef from Performance Food Group), carrots, red bell peppers, baby kale, cremini mushrooms, green onions and cilantro, served with a chipotle and green tomatillo salsa.
“Serving healthier food in a bowl and making it fast and delicious is not completely innovative,” says Reed. “But we are providing something uniquely delicious and healthy at an attractive price.” The concept caters to grab-and-go needs, but there are 45 seats available.
BOWL’D will also offer five smoothies ($5.49): dark berry, mango pineapple, strawberry banana, chocolate peanut butter banana and “the whole kitchen sink,” a mix of fruit and vegetables. “We don’t use ice cream or fruit concentrates—just fruit—and then we offer various healthy boosts, like baby kale and ground flax seed,” says Reed.
Fresh and simple ingredients encompass a fast meal that Reed says is “virtually guilt-free and naturally gluten free.” / BOWL’D; 1028 N. Garfield St., Arlington