A new “quick serve” restaurant has opened at the corner of Chippewa and Delaware, but thankfully it’s not your typical 2-burgers for 2-bucks type of joint. Rather, Rachel’s bent is a concept loosely based on Chipotle, albeit with a Mediterranean food slant.
For starters, there’s no seating in the restaurant – that alone sets the place apart from most other nearby restaurants. Rachel’s is set up to get customers in and out as quickly as possible, which might not be such as bad thing for downtown office workers who tend to eat on the fly as much as possible.
Upon walking in, guests are greeted by an overhead menu board and a long counter. There are also paper menus, which help out with the ordering process. The premise is fairly simple. Choose either a pita wrap, a rice bowl, a salad, or a pitachip bowl. From there you can fill your “foundation” with either chicken/steak souvlaki, steak chicken/kabob, gyro or falafel. Then there are sauces, veggies and cheeses to choose from. By the time you get to the opposite end of the counter, your meal should be ready to go… and so should you.
One of the things that’s nice about Rachel’s is that while you’re zipping along the counter, pointing to the selections, you can see the cooks preparing your food on the grill, and all of the ingredients are easy to view… so there are no mysteries as to what is being served up. After speaking to the Rachel’s’ staff I learned that the initial response to the concept has been overwhelming. Apparently at prime lunchtime there have already been lines out of the door, and they are seeing repeat customers who come back looking to try the various food combinations. Unfortunately the staff was unprepared for the initial response and was caught off guard with staffing and food supplies this past Wednesday. According to their Facebook page, that problem was immediately resolved by the time service started the following day.
You can see how a quick serve restaurant like Rachel’s would be successful in the location that they have chosen. Just think about why places like Subway are so successful… definitely not your typical burger place, but just as quick and easy. The customizable aspect is appealing as well. Grab and go, and get on with your day.
Rachel’s was first introduced at the University at Buffalo Commons and on Main Street in Williamsville, before the stripped down version migrated to Downtown Buffalo. For around $7 you can get your fill of custom wraps, salads and bowls, and when it comes to scoring a quick fix served up in an unconventional, ‘prepared on the spot’ manner, Rachel’s is in business to accommodate.
Rachel’s Mediterranean – next to Starbucks
235 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo NY 14202
Delivery is free – see Facebook