Boston’s Back Bay welcomes a new source for fast-casual Mediterranean food tomorrow with the opening of Cava (669 Boylston St.), a Washington, DC-based chain that arrived in Fenway earlier this year and operates two other locations in Dedham and Hingham.
Cava opens for business at 10:45 a.m. on Tuesday, June 19, offering free meals for the first 150 customers. The restaurant will also take donations to benefit its local non-profit partner Future Chefs, which provides culinary instruction to teenagers. Cava has already transitioned to its summer menu, so diners can expect to see seasonal ingredients including green peppers, button mushrooms, and grape tomatoes.
In true fast-casual form, the structure of Cava’s menu allows for customization. Customers choose a base of greens or grains and accompanying spreads and dips, proteins, toppings, and dressing. Proteins include falafel and roasted seasonal vegetables, spicy lamb meatballs, grilled chicken, and braised lamb. Other toppings range from cauliflower quinoa tabouleh and jalapeño-infused feta mousse to olives, cucumbers, and cabbage slaw. Summer specials include white bean salad, spicy lentil soup, and spicy apricot dressing.
Cava was founded in 2011 and received a hefty dose of funding in 2017 that helped fuel its expansion to Greater Boston. Back Bay’s restaurant brings the local total to four, and a fifth Cava will open in Kendall Square later this year. Cava’s expansion in the area further expands Boston’s options for fast-casual Mediterranean restaurants, which are already vast, thanks to local spots like Saloniki and Gre.co, as well as out-of-towners like Noon (formerly Verts Mediterranean Grill).
Cava’s nearly 3,000-square-foot restaurant in Back Bay seats 40 and will operate seven days a week from 10:45 a.m. to 10 p.m.