SOUTH TAMPA— Vale Food Co., a health food restaurant, hopes to make its mark on the bay area foodie scene with the opening of its first location in Tampa.
In 2014, Sunny Ilyas was a Florida State student trying to find an affordable, healthy meal for someone on a college student's budget, but there was nothing like that at the time.
So, he started the company as a meal delivery plan service in Tallahassee providing fresh meals to a customer's door, and it quickly turned into a full service restaurant as business began to boom. They eventually added a second location in Gainesville, and now the Tampa shop, located at 501 N Franklin St. makes the third location.
"There's a common misconception that because it's healthy it's bland and extremely expensive," said manager Ramses Ghanen.
Operating as a fast-casual concept, Vale Food Co. strives to eliminate that approach to healthy food by offering a variety of options for someone easing into a healthier diet and for someone who's an expert — all under $10.
"We have a little bit of everything for everyone," Ghanen said. "There's no intimidation when you come in here. We're not extreme where you have to be 100 percent all in, you can ease into it."
From their hot food line, customers can create their own bowl from a selection of bases, veggies, proteins and sauces, or some of their classic favorites like chipotle mac and cheese, teriyaki chicken with roasted broccoli on a bed of quinoa or BBQ braised beef.
They also have a super foods station where diners can enjoy acai bowls, poke bowls, nut butter toast and avocado toast.
They take pride on being all natural and transparent. They cook the food in front of customers and do not use any antibiotics, high fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, preservatives, nor trans fat.
To further distinguish themselves in the market, their menu rotates on a daily basis.
"You're never tired of eating the same thing. You can come in multiple times during the week and know with confidence you can taste something different," said Ghanen.
"The industry changes, trends change and we want to be able to adapt and find a way to provide good healthy, high quality food even as time goes on."
They operate seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and for more information visit valefoodco.com or call (813) 374-1370.
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