Local Profiles: Cristian Radu - Salad Box (3.11.19)
We love how many healthy options are popping up downtown. One of our recent go-tos to keep it fun has been Salad Box on Park Place. We spoke with the owner, Cristian Radu, to learn more about what makes Salad Box more than simply your new salad spot…
Tell us about Salad Box…
Salad Box is a concept with multiple goals, the main one being to build a new healthy lifestyle for people. It was created from the desire to provide an alternative to fast food meals. It is a European concept that started in 2012 in Romania and in just six years expanded in three continents and more than 12 countries with more than 70 restaurants.
Last year (2017) my partner and I brought this concept to the US market, opening the first location in Miami and the second location in New York.
Salad Box restaurants offer a range of salads with various meat assortments, cream soups, desserts, fresh drinks and lemonades.
What inspired you to open up downtown?
For the US we started by altering the recipes of the predefined salads to better fit the taste (Cobb salad was introduced in the menu and also a Tropical salad was launched as a Miami tribute). We also altered the dressing recipes and added more variation with a local flavor (rasspberry vinaigrette, Chipotle, and Blue cheese were featured for the first time in Miami). Right before the NY launch, we added two more boxes to the original salad box: the warm box and the crepe box. The warm box is similar to a bowl, adding warm grains to the combo (quinoa, rice mix, cauliflower rice, couscous). The crepe box is a homemade crepe that is inspired by the folding style of street food Miami culture. You get to enjoy a savory crepe and add salad components as the filling.
The whole concept is about prepping almost everything from scratch, creating a fresh and homemade feel. We believe in fresh food!
2.Fresh. Fast. Adapt. I think this is what defines Salad Box. We’re looking to be the go-to place for a healthy food served fast alternative in downtown Brickell and downtown New York. Our current serving style (modified to face any lunch rush hour with a smile) means 6 people being served at the same time, that means an average of 120-150 salads per hour. Even with a line-out the door type of rush, it shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes from the minute you walk through the door until you’re out with your choice of salad Box. There is also the option to download our app and order for pick-up or delivery to make things even easier.
What should locals know about Salad Box?
The locals must know that we are are working from very early hours to prepare everything from scratch in order to stay true to our belief about fresh food. Every day we prepare our soups of the day, our dressings and our ingredients to give our customers the best taste and quality.
We are open from Monday -Friday 7:30am -7:30pm and Saturday from 10am-5pm.
We also have our app where they can log in and order for delivery or pick up in order to avoid our in-store line. Moreover, we are partnered with many specialized companies like Grubhub, Seamlees, Uber Eats, Postmate, Ritual, Doordash, etc which they can use to place an order with us.
What are your go-to menu items?
Healthy eating is the way we are covering our nutritional needs.My favorite dishes from the menu are :
- the green energy smoothie because it gives you all the ingredients ,vitamins, acids and antioxidants that you need to start your day.
- the Cobb salad because it’s a quintessence of a perfect meal.
All our soups (dairy free) are great but I personally think the pea soup tastes best because of the dill that gives it an unforgettable savor.
What’s coming up for Salad Box this year?
We intend to expand into the US with one or two other stores on the East coast in the next year and also to start selling franchises for the US market but we are very careful with these next measures.