Maybe fast-casual inventive salad chain Sweetgreen has been following me.
I just checked its locations, and it seems to show up in places where I'd previously spent decent portions of my life. In Philadelphia, my native land (because it is a foreign country), Sweetgreen is at 10th and Walnut streets, which is where I spent plenty of time as a kid, gazing up at skyscrapers and taking piano classes. I didn't become an architect, as I had once hoped, and I didn't learn to play "Good Day Sunshine." It's also at the University of Pennsylvania, where I worked as a caterer for a couple summers, and at Philly's Rittenhouse Square, which I frequented during my "dreaming of being a self-employed novelist" phase.
It's in Boston, in the Back Bay area, by Fenway Park, and in the Downtown Crossing shopping maze. I attended college at Boston University and spent plenty of off-class hours walking around the Back Bay, into the city's pocket-sized downtown, again, dreaming of being a self-employed novelist. Okay, maybe it wasn't a phase.
Sweetgreen is in Santa Monica and the Sunset Strip in California, which would've been home for me if I decided to pursue screenwriting after college. Nevertheless, I did check out both places during a vacation visiting an ex-girlfriend. That counts.
And it's in New York, at a whole litany of places that I have been to, mostly while—you know—dreaming of being a self-employed novelist.
All this to say that Sweetgreen is coming to Houston, according to the Houston Business Journal and Eater. It's slated for a fall opening in Rice Village, which according to the HBJ is also welcoming Dallas-based restaurant and wine bar Sixty Vines and California-based sandwich restaurant Mendicino Farms. The arrival of these businesses comes just after the recent introductions of Hopdoddy Burger Bar and Shake Shack, and the very recent closure of stalwart Irish bar the Gorgeous Gael (per Eater).
I don't know if Rice Village used to be the kind of neighborhood where a young person could walk through, dreaming of becoming a novelist. But like Philadelphia's Rittenhouse Square area, Boston's Downtown Crossing, and any number of Manhattan and Brooklyn neighborhoods, it's seeing a lot more chain spots like Sweetgreen these days.