Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Taziki's Going For Growth in Georgia : Decatur and Buckhead Locations Coming Soon

Growing chain continues metro expansion

Birmingham, Alabama-based Taziki's Mediterranean Cafe plans to end 2015 with six units in metro Atlanta with the possibility of adding another six in the coming years.  The fast casual chain entered metro Atlanta in 2012 with a location in Sandy Springs at the  "Glenridge Springs" development, near the Haverty's building.   Taziki's added a location on Windward Parkway in Alpharetta in late 2013. Last spring the chain opened in Athens in the Bottleworks on Prince Avenue.  

Today the chain opened its newest location, in Suwanee on Old Peachtree Road.  Here, Taziki's joined Nashville, Tennessee-based I Love Juice Bar in a newly built center just off I-85 and adjacent to an existing Home Depot.  

As I previously announced, Taziki's upcoming Decatur location will open alongside a new outpost of Highland Bakery at 315 West Ponce de Leon Avenue. While a drive-thru I Love Juice Bar was also proposed for the property, the concept was panned by the city of Decatur and ultimately abandoned.  

The sixth Georgia location of Taziki's will open in the Fashion Cafe at Lenox Square.  In the Buckhead mall, the Mediterranean eatery will replace the recently shuttered Subway restaurant.  In Lenox, Taziki's joins fellow fast casual operators such as Chipotle Mexican Grill and Freshii. Taziki's will hope to fill the void left by longtime Mediterranean eatery Hovan Gourmet which closed in the Fashion Cafe in late 2013.

In case you've never been, Taziki's has similarities to Zoës Kitchen, and with good reason. 

Marcus & Zoe Cassimus started  Zoës Kitchen in 1995, and in 1998, Keith & Amy Richards opened Taziki's Mediterranean Cafe.  According to a well placed source within Zoës Kitchen, Keith Richards first approached Zoës Kitchen about opening a franchise, but after being trained,  he departed and eventually opened Taziki's.  

Both are fast casual restaurants featuring Mediterranean fare, and both started in Birmingham, Alabama.  

Today, Zoës is headquartered in Plano, Texas, has about 150 locations in sixteen states, and as of last year is a publicly traded company.  Taziki's remains based in Birmingham and has 47 open or opening locations in 14 states.  

Personally, I prefer the offerings of  Zoës to those of Taziki's.

Have you been to both  Zoës Kitchen and Taziki's?  If so, which do you prefer?  Do you think Taziki's will do well in Lenox Square?  What is your favorite Mediterranean dish?  

Please share your thoughts below.  


Anonymous said...

I like them both but for different reasons. I'm glad to see new locations opening.

Anonymous said...

I do not see success for the one in Suwanee, as it is hidden behind apartments and next to a Jim N Nick's. No convenient access.

Russ said...

Zoe's has better quality and more hearty in my opinion. I leave Taziki's still hungry every time!

Anonymous said...

Taz is a terrible value and portion, and everything seems like it is the quality of fast food, dry and bland. The absolute best in this space is pita by the Beirut in Dunwoody you have to check it out. Their triple Meza platter I forget the name of it actually is a great portion a great value and has the best and true Mediterranean flavors overall.

Anonymous said...

Both are different and have a lot to offer, IMO. I like both and am glad to see Taziki's coming. We need higher quality fast casual food in Buckhead.

Anonymous said...

Keith did work for zoës for a short while but zoës wasn't franchising at that point. They are both similar with Mediterranean food but tazikis offers daily specials and sources locally. Mediterranean food is huge business and birmingham. And everyone has their r faves. Lots of mom and pop places as well as the two big ones. The food at both is different enough you could eat at one in morning and another in the evening. Zoësdidnt really try to expand till their football star/ celebrity dating son took over and transformed the restaurant. I personally love them both. And I think I'll be picking up the weekend pasta special at tazikis this weekend!