New Fresh Cafe Offers Healthy, Quick Service on P Street
Good for the body, good for the taste buds.
BY MADELINE CHRISTENSEN
Raouf Agrignan was tired of the lack of healthy quick service restaurants in Lincoln, and set out to find the perfect franchise to invest in. What followed was a six year quest—deeply personal, and sometimes discouraging—to find the right fit.
Agrignan’s effort has finally paid off at the corner of 13th and P Street in downtown Lincoln. Fresh Healthy Cafe will open its doors tomorrow to offer nutritional options for people on the go with power bowls, wraps, salads and smoothies.
“There might be some out there, but this is the healthiest restaurant I have see during six years of looking,” Agrignan said.
Agrignan spent years looking at franchise restaurants—searching online, traveling to different states and using business brokers. Although there were thousands, Agrignan said the lack of healthy options the restaurants provided was the reason he could never commit to opening one.
“I believe in eating healthy and this is very personal to me,” Agrignan said. “I lost someone that was dear to me because of bad habits of eating. Therefore, the last thing I wanted to do was to open a restaurant that serves unhealthy foods to the community.”
During his search, he found that many restaurants only claim to provide healthy options.
“When I started digging into the menu and ingredients I got discouraged,” he said.
Some franchises offered salads and “healthy” drinks, but the drinks had processed sugars and their salad dressings had more added sugar than some cans of soda.
Agrignan took a break from his healthy franchise quest to invest in Lincoln in-home senior care business Right at Home with his sister. After its success several years later, he felt he needed to start looking for a nutritional restaurant again.
A friend came across the Fresh Healthy Cafe franchise while on a trip and immediately brought back a menu for Agrignan.
“When I looked at the menu, I was sold but still a little cautious,” he said. “So I reached out and requested all the info I needed to make a decision."
For once, Agrignan wasn’t discouraged.
“Fresh Healthy Cafe’s menu is unlike anything else offered in the industry,” he said. “Every item on our menu is as good for the body as it is for the taste buds. All our food and beverages are made fresh to order right in front of your eyes, using only natural ingredients of the highest quality.”
Fresh also boasts non-GMO food and drinks that are preservative and sugar free, served in 100% biodegradable packaging materials. Even the stores are designed with a smaller carbon footprint in mind by using sustainable materials and resources.
Items on the menu range from organic acai bowls to turkey bacon avocado paninis to kale vegetarian wraps. Fresh also provides real fruit juices, nutrient-packed smoothies, artisan soups and protein bowls all for around $5-10.
With a bright green interior, plenty of windows that look out to tower square, and an upper level seating area, Fresh’s new space hopes to be downtown’s new haven for a quick and healthy meal.