Feel Good about Eating at Sharky’s

Shrimp Power Plate with organic Mexican rice & Vegetarian quinoa.
Shrimp Power Plate with organic Mexican rice & Vegetarian quinoa.

If you even know me slightly, I bet you know one thing is for sure: I LOVE Mexican food. Put me in an atmosphere with tacos, tortilla chips, & heaven forbid…sangria, & Mary is a happy eater. Go a few steps further & make my favorite cuisine healthier, gluten-free & vegetarian friendly, along with some GMO-free & organic options, & it is magic.

SoCal favorite, Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill, is making all of the above reality, & I was fascinated to learn all about this franchise’s rich history when they invited me to try out their newest location in Northridge. Sharky’s COO, David Goldstein, was on hand to tell us all about the company & is easily one of the most genuine & kind-hearted people I have had the privilege to speak to on behalf of my blog. Very un-assuming, David was working & helping out at Sharky’s just like their other fabulous employees; even offering leftover drinks to patrons that us bloggers were un-able to get to as we had our own abundance of lemonades. The generosity was never-ending for our media gathering!

Guacomole is made fresh daily.
Guacomole is made fresh daily.

 

It all began in 1992, right next door to me in Sherman Oaks, California; Founder, Steve Paperno noticed much of the food at restaurants was processed and lacked healthy options.Steve  had a vision to combine the variety of flavors he experienced traveling through Mexico with innovative recipes and his passion for healthy living. His passion for eating organic and natural food along with his active healthy lifestyle inspired him to fill this void and make a difference in the way people dined out. Thus, Sharky’s was born & fun side note: With many films filmed in the area, Steve would often get body builder types from the industry in his restaurant. Steve, taking their order & being a very built up guy himself, would get these fellow buff dudes asking him: “Well, what do you eat?!” & he would recommend an all chicken burrito with some broccoli.

Which is why I love Sharky’s; it is completely possible to enjoy an awesome fast-casual meal, while not consuming a huge amount of calories. Their motto? Anything goes at Sharky’s. If you want an all protein burrito or one of their delicious “Power Plates” (my new favorite!), they can do that. Want their nachos grande, with extra everything & coming out to a few thousand calories? They got you covered. They have also managed to ensure that whether you want a girls night out or a date night with some wine or beers from a local brewery (all beers served come from within 150 miles, from San Diego to Paso Robles), or if it’s a pit stop after school & work, with the kids, that you will be happy you’re there.

Beers & Wine on Tap

Speaking of my new favorite, their shrimp tacos have always been my staple, yet, David sold me on their Power Plate & I am so happy that he did. Choosing a protein (in my case, shrimp) & either 2 or 3 sides (ranging from quinoa to veggies, or rice…& even yams!), this is a hearty portion plate that can provide you with nutrition to fuel you, complete comfort foods, or both on the same plate.

You also will need to try one of their fresh made lemonades, or the kumbacha, on your visit! I tried the Strawberry Cilantro Lemonade & had I known there was cilantro, I would have passed. So glad I did not know until after the fact! Usually, cilantro is bitter to me, yet, Sharky’s trick is to cook the cilantro for this concoction.

The Bar at Sharky's

With more locations in the works, keep your eye on Sharky’s as great things are in store, & if you’re in SoCal, check out one near you by finding the shop nearest to you on their web-site. Enjoy! xo

(*Disclosure: I was invited to Sharky’s on behalf of this feature. All opinions are my own.)

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