Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh—the leading Mediterranean cuisine brand renowned for its wholesome, healthy and simple dishes, top-quality meats and fresh-baked pita—is entering the Illinois market on February 8.
Located at 1401 W. Green St. on the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign campus, Garbanzo will be the first restaurant with Halal offerings on campus.
“We are excited to introduce everyone in the area to a new dining option that is both delicious and nutritious,” says franchisee Britton Wiedemann of Bonzos1, LLC. “At Garbanzo, we serve up love in every pita so our guests can feel brighter on the inside. The entire menu is Halal and the recipes are crafted using fresh, authentic ingredients, which is why every dish served is so flavorful. We’ve assembled a great team and we’re looking forward to becoming an integral part of University of Illinois’ campus.”
This is Wiedemann and his business partner Tom Weigand’s first Garbanzo location. The duo recently expanded into the fastest growing Mediterranean brand—Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh – after opening several Noodle & Company restaurants.
“We are excited to expand into the Illinois market and couldn’t ask for anyone better to lead the way than Britton and Tom,” says Garbanzo CEO James Park. “They are highly regarded in the franchising industry, so we are overjoyed to have them join the Garbanzo team.”
Illinois’ first Garbanzo marks the second location to open with the brand’s new prototype. True to form, Garbanzo 2.0 exudes a simple, refined and fresh aesthetic. It’ll feature a stand-alone bakery area where guests will be able to see their pitas being lovingly kneaded, placed in the oven and puffed to perfection right before their eyes. All in a casual, welcoming environment that will make guests feel comfortable while they discover how delicious nutritious can be.
Garbanzo is making fresh Mediterranean cuisine a mainstream favorite across the United States. Its authentic, nutrient-rich dishes derived from Old World recipes are served with a new twist, but without compromise. Every order is customized to the guest’s liking, with choices from top-quality meats and plant-based proteins to authentic laffa wraps and perfect, pillowy pitas baked in-house throughout the day. Garbanzo is dedicated to satisfying every palate—including vegetarian and gluten-free diners—and believes that “simple tastes better.”
“We’re beginning to see a definite shift from Mexican to Mediterranean, and a transition from sandwiches to shawarmas,” says Park. “Mediterranean flavors have survived the test of time and now it’s become the food trend of the future. We just have to be sure not to mess with it too much because, at its core, it’s already darn close to perfect.”
Illinois’ first Garbanzo marks the 26th system-wide. The new restaurant will be open Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh is headquartered in Colorado with 25 locations nationwide.
The five times weekly e-newsletter that keeps you up-to-date on the latest industry news and additions to this website.