Friday, June 21, 2013

b.good Restaurant Opens in Bedford Marketplace Shopping Center

b.good at 168 Great Road next to Cafe Luigi in the Bedford Marketplace shopping center has opened. The new restaurant which has 48 seats, is focused on all natural burgers (beef, turkey, chicken and veggie) along with salads, sweet potato fries and shakes. As previously reported, the meat and produce are both locally sourced.

The dining room is a mix of regular and high top seating. This was previously the lobby of Cambridge Savings Bank before it moved across the street.

With the Bedford location open, b.good has 11 locations (all in Massachusetts). Several more locations (including out of state) are expected to open this summer.

Customers can choose from a wide variety of toppings and sauces for thei Burgers such as Gouda Cheese, Avocado, Jalapeno-Ranch and BBQ sauce. Please click on the image to zoom in.

The restaurant gets all it's produce from local farms such as Lanni Orchards which is located in Lunenburg Massachusetts.

Before it opened, b.good provided lunch to Bedford High School students on June 4th and lunch to Bedford Middle School students on June 14th. This helped build buzz for there grand opening party which I estimate served close to 1000 people.

The self service drink station includes Soda's, Ice Tea and Lemonade.

b.good is open for lunch and dinner every day. The menu is displayed outside the entrance which is a rarity in Bedford. However this enables people to check it out when the restaurant is closed. 

To help promote there restaurants b.good has a truck that drives around offering free shakes in areas where they will soon open a restaurant. 

b.good held a grand opening party where it gave away free food and shakes for 2 hours. They also had games and live music. 

Providing lunch to Bedford Students seems to be smart marketing. I'm sure many of the students told their parents if they liked the food. This seems like a cost effective way to reach a large portion of town residents. And there their shake truck is going to different office parks to reach people who work in Bedford. Rather then send a mailer or place advertisements talking about how good their food is, they made use of personal testimonials.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Chipotle Mexican Grill in Bedford is now Open

The Chipotle Mexican Grill at 301 Great Road opened today. The new restaurant which has been under construction for several months, has 50 indoor and 12 outdoor seats. It's open 7 days a week from 11am to 10pm.

While the main footprint of the building has stayed the same, it no longer looks like a Friendly's.

Chipotle's opened it's first restaurant 20 years ago in Denver, expanded outside Colorado in 1999 and now has almost 1500 locations across the United States and parts of Europe.

Chipotle's focus is to provide sustainable raised food and natural ingredients. They source their pork and chicken from farmers that raise their animals without any antibiotics. According to Chipolte's management, everything is chopped, prepared and cooked onsite. The restaurant does not have any freezers or microwaves.

The outdoor patio features small stones that appear to be glued together providing the look of crushed stoned without having any stone dust track in to the restaurant.

The self service beverage area features an assortment of soda and Iced Tea. Beer will also be sold once the beer and wine license gets it's final approval.

With all the new restaurants in town (b.good is now scheduled to open on June 22nd), there is going to be more competition. However I think overall there will be an increase in the total amount of money spent in Bedford restaurants as some people who previously ate in Lexington or Burlington can get what they want closer. At the end of the year, it would be interesting to take a look at the total sales tax received from meals in Bedford for 2013 and compare it to 2012 and see how much it increased.

Chipolte's has expanded in to Massachusetts in the past few years. It will be interesting to see if their New Southeast Asian concept, ShopHouse makes any inroads.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Wicked Good Frozen Yogurt Opens on Blake Block

Wicked Good Frozen Yogurt at 80 Great Road opened on June 10th. The new shop, which has about 20 seats, is the second restaurant to open on the Blake Block (with two more to go).

I recently spoke with Maria Cronin co-owner who is also a Bedford resident. According to Maria, she did not have any initial interest in Frozen Yogurt, but keep seeing a lot of Frozen Yogurt shops open in other towns such as Lexington. They seemed to do very well. She did not see any in Bedford, so she decided to open one herself.

Each Self Serve Frozen Yogurt Machine features three unique soft serve flavors. Customers get to fill
                                            a cup with the flavor(s) they want.

There are five machines for a total of 15 distinctive flavors.

Once the customer has added the Frozen Yogurt in to the supplied cups, they can also choose to pile on up to 20 different toppings and flavorings such as Hot Fudge, Strawberries or Candy Pieces. The final price is determined by weight, in this case the number of ounces.

A view of the toppings bar. The Frozen Yogurt can also be made in to Smoothies.

The new shop is open until 9 or 10 pm every day.

Both Burlington and Lexington have added multiple Self Serve Frozen Yogurt shops in the past year. This is the first one for Bedford. This appears to fill the void left when Friendly's closed. It will be interesting to see how much overlap it will have with Bedford Farms. For more about the recent expansion of the Frozen Yogurt Market, check out this article.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Wicked Good Frozen Yogurt Expected to Open Monday

Wicked Good Frozen Yogurt on the Blake Block at 80 Great Road is expected to open on Monday. The new Yogurt shop is expected to offer 10 different flavors of Frozen Yogurt along with a mix of toppings that you can add in. The store will be open until 9 pm during the week and 10pm on Friday and Saturday.

Stay tuned for more details.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Chipotle Mexican Grill Getting Ready to Open

The Chipotle Mexican Grill at 301 Great Road is expected to open within the next few weeks. The new restaurant replaces the Friendly's that closed in January of 2012. The building has undergone extensive renovation.

While there are Chipolte's in Burlington and Woburn, the Bedford location will be the only one in the immediate area that sells beer in addition to the regular menu items. The restaurant also features an outdoor patio.

Stay tuned for more details.

What's interesting is that while the building did not move, the address changed from 343 Great Road to 301 Great Road. I'm guessing this is a deliberate attempt by Chipotle to ensure that old online information about Friendly's does not get associated with the new restaurant.