New concept to debut later this summer
Erik Maier, co-founder and CEO of YEAH! BURGER, has reportedly changed the name of his upcoming Westside restaurant. Originally called "Juicy Green," my research indicates that the concept will now be called "upbeet."
In my opinion, the upbeet name is far superior to Juicy Green and will surely lend itself to some beet-centric menu items and themes.
Rumors began circulating in late 2014 that Maier would open a new restaurant in the redeveloped Sunlow Inc. building at 1071 Howell Mill Road. While work on the space's shell is basically done, the restaurant buildout is seemingly just getting started.
In my preparation for this post, I found what appeared to be Maier reaching out to the former owner of the "upbeet" twitter handle. No word on what was involved in freeing the handle, but I hope the owner was compensated appropriately.
The upbeet website displays a rotating list of menu items one can expect to see in the restaurant. Offerings include: seasonal sides, vegan options, organic juices & smoothies, paleo, vegan and gluten-free pastries, grain bowls, protein plates, acai & yogurt bowls, and organic salads.
Upbeet also has an active facebook page.
Sources indicate that upbeet will be similar in some ways to Los Angeles-based Lemonade, a quick serve healthy eatery currently experiencing tremendous growth. While I have not personally been to Lemonade, I have been to another similar concept, Flower Child. Developed by Sam Fox of Phoenix-based Fox Restaurant Concepts, Flower Child is like the little sister of True Food Kitchen. Both Lemonade and Flower Child offer wide varieties of healthy seasonally inspired fare, fresh juices and assorted proteins.
Launched in 2010, YEAH! BURGER currently has two locations: West Midtown and Virginia-Highland.
While expansion of the upbeet concept is surely in the back of Maier's mind, there are already three more YEAH! units in the works. YEAH! BURGER is expected to open later this year in the recently renovated "Buckhead Exchange" at the corner of Peachtree Road and Grandview Avenue in Buckhead. YEAH! BURGER is also expected to open in Peachtree Crossing, the new Whole Foods Market-anchored center in Chamblee, which is due to open next year. YEAH! will also enter the Nashville market with a location in Hill Center Brentwood, a new mixed-use development, with plans to be open by next spring. While originally announced to be franchised locations, the upcoming YEAH! restaurants will reportedly all be corporately owned.
Upbeet is reportedly expected to open later this summer or early fall, but YEAH! BURGER Marketing & Creative Director Kelly Wallace indicated to me that updated information on the concept and opening will be announced in the coming weeks.
Have you been to Lemonade or Flower Child? If so, what were your thoughts? Are you excited to see this concept coming first to the Westside? Where else in Atlanta should upbeet open?
Please share your thoughts below.