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Cedars Woodfire Grill

05/09

Cedars Woodfire Grill

 
By Jenni Hanley
 

Whoever said you had to sacrifice taste to eat healthy (read: no cal, no sugar, no salt … no fun) could learn a thing or two from Randy Gier and Laurie Curtis, founders of the newly opened “fast casual” restaurant Cedars Woodfire Grill in Plano.

According to Curtis, the mission is to “eat well, live well, feel good,” and, being a parent herself, she understands that people of all ages won’t necessarily get that from a diet of chicken nuggets alone. That’s why she and Gier have shunned freezers, fryers and microwaves, and all meat and produce come in fresh daily.

Skeptical? You can see it for yourself, when your tender, juicy, hormone-free chicken gets grilled before your eyes in the open kitchen.  And with so many fresh, local ingredients used, there’s hardly anything on the menu to feel guilty about. Start the whole table off with a “Share-able,” such as grilled vegetable bruschetta: grilled sourdough topped with grilled marinated veggies, Parmesan and a sweet balsamic glaze. For your meal, try a summer harvest salad: fresh mangoes, strawberries, almonds, carrots, onions and Parmesan tossed with lemon poppy seed dressing. For heartier appetites, items such as chili and the steakhouse chop salad will certainly satisfy.

Still have questions about what you’re putting in your tummy? They’ve got you covered. To find out the calorie, fat, carbohydrate and protein content of any dish, simply text in the item code (listed on the menu) and you’ll instantly receive nutritional details. And if you’ve got dietary restrictions, check out the menu listing diabetic-friendly, low-sodium, vegetarian and gluten-free options.

Curtis and Gier entered into this venture with family in mind. The kids menu, developed from items hand-picked by kids in a focus group (with input from moms, natch), is displayed on a photo board, so kids can point to what they want. “It’s amazing what kids will eat,” shares Curtis, noting that, in addition to favorites like pizzadillas and noodle bowls, some kids actually like salad when given the option. When you enter the restaurant, a friendly waiter will serve you a bowl of fresh pita chips (for snacking while you wait) and a tabletop activity board.

A final word? The Cedars philosophy involves balance and choice, not deprivation. That said, be sure to indulge in a s’mores fondue before you leave. The whole family will enjoy dipping graham crackers and strawberries into a decadent blend of three chocolates and roasted marshmallows. There’s no reason to feel guilty, even if you choose the cookies over the fruit …

Sidebar
Cedars Woodfire Grill
6509 W. Park Blvd., Ste. 440, Plano.
972/378-1222;
cedarswoodfiregrill.com


Sidebar #2
Price Range: $-$$
Tableside stroller parking? Yes
Highchairs? Yes
Changing tables in the bathroom? Men and women, plus step stools
Kids menu: Yes
Kids activities: Yes
Noise level: 3 of 5 (5 is loudest)

Price per person including a drink
Under $10: $
$10-25: $$
$25-50: $$$
$50 and above: $$$$



Cedars Woodfire Grill Opens in West Plano – Great Family-Friendly Restaurant

03/07

Cedars Woodfire Grill Opens in West Plano – Great Family-Friendly Restaurant
by Minette
I had the good fortune to enjoy lunch at Cedars Woodfire Grill, a new and very welcome concept, in restaurant food in Plano. I sat down with Laurie Curtis, one of the co-founders and co-creators of Cedars. First, I loved Laurie, she is very knowledgeable and passionate, plus we discovered we went to the same high school in San Antonio and we both went to Texas A&M for undergrad. What a small world! Second, while our conversation was delightful, what mom can’t talk about their kids all day long, the food was super yummy. Not only was it yummy, but Cedars mission of “Eat Well. Live Well. Feel Good” is obvious in the fresh quality of their food. And finally, being a mom of two little ones, Laurie has made sure that Cedars Woodfire Grill caters to families in a variety of ways.

The decor was beautiful with lots of brick and wood and felt very open yet elegant for a “fast food” eatery. Like La Madeleine, you walk up to the counter and order and then servers bring your food. Like Pei Wei, they had great photos of the food on boards as you are standing in line, very visually appealing and appetizing! They even have a menu board just for the Kids’ meals so kids can literally see what they want to eat. They have a great fireplace in the main entry and a huge patio that we all need to take advantage of during this gorgeous spring weather.

I think what was most important and impressive to me is that Cedars does not have a microwave, deep fryer or a deep freezer, all of their food is prepared fresh daily on site! Where else can you go and be 100% certain you are getting food this fresh other than your own kitchen? Plus, they have made it easy for people with food sensitivities to eat at Cedars. They have a variety of items that can be prepared gluten-free and Curtis says they have worked with staff to educate them on what to ask and how to make sure that people’s needs are being met!

A couple of other fun, kid-friendly features that make me want to go back with my kids: stools in the bathroom so you don’t have to hold your little one’s up to wash their hands, getting yourself soaked in the process; the staff will bring your kids complimentary pita chips to snack on while waiting for their food; and my personal favorite for crazy activity-filled evenings – order ahead and park curbside in a Grill-2–Go spot and they will bring the food to you.

What did I eat? The Steakhouse Chop salad, it was yummy! The steak was tender and the balsamic vinaigrette was fabulous. They had a tasty variety of iced teas, I had the Mandarin Orange green tea, and loved it. The best part was their dessert, and worth going back for often! It’s called S’mores Fondue. Imagine a warm bowl full of melted Ghiradelli chocolate (my personal favorite), covered in mini-marshmallows and Reese’s peanut butter chips that have been browned, so they are melted but not too gushy. This was served with graham crackers and huge strawberries on skewers for dipping. They do serve a variety of wine and beer, so while this is a family-friendly location, I wouldn’t mind camping out on the patio for date night with the hubby!

I recommend giving it a try soon! Here are the hours and the location. And of course, a huge thank you to Laurie Curtis for great lunch and great company! Congrats on your newest baby!

Hours of Operation

Lunch and dinner 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 11a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday; and 10:30a.m. – 9 p.m. Sunday. Curbside service is available.

Location: 6509 W. Park Blvd. (NE corner of Park and Midway) Plano, TX 75093

Eat Well, live well and feel good at Cedars Woodfire Grill

Eat Well, live well and feel good at Cedars Woodfire Grill

02/26

by Kelsi Gerwell, Plano Vegetarian Restaurants Examiner
Eat Well
When co-owners Rancy Gier and Laurie Curtis came up with the concept for Cedars Woodfire Grill, they wanted a restaurant that made it possible for people to get hot, delicious and healthy dining options that were also kid-friendly.  They wanted to come up with a restaurant that served you healthy food that would give you energy and make you feel good.  At Cedars there are no microwaves, no deep fryers and the food is never frozen.  The ordering process is easy and fast.  In face, the most difficult part is just deciding which delicious entree you would like to eat the most.  If that's not enough, all of the items are also under $10 each.  
The food is also fresh.  You don't have to worry that it's been sitting in the fridge for over a week.  All of the produce arrives fresh daily, 90% of which are grown in the U.S. and sourced locally if possible.  The dressings are made in house and blended daily with their freshly grilled vegetables.  The cheeses they use are real cheese from Texas, Wisconsin and California.  There are no starches and no flavors added.  
 At Cedars, eating vegetarian couldn't be easier.  Just order any of the salads, sandwiches or bowls with the baby portabella mushrooms.  The mushrooms are even grown in a vegetarian compost.  The whole-grain rice is cooked in a vegetable stock and the Asian and marinara sauces are all meat/dairy free.  They also include many calorie-conscious, diabetic-friendly and gluten-free options.
To start, you might want to try their House-made Pita Chips which are crispy wheat chips served with house-made hummus and roasted garlic basil marinara sauces.  For an entree, you can choose a bowl, a salad or a sandwich.   The Asian Sweet and Spicy Bowl was "yes, oh my goodness, yes delicious" according to another Cedars patron.  I would definitely recommend the Tex-Mex Chipotle Ranch Salad or the Southwestern Torta Wrap for a salad or sandwich option.  To end the meal, you definitely have to try their S'mores Fondue, a blend of milk & dark chocolates with a touch of peanut butter, topped with toasted marshmallows and served iwth fresh strawberries and graham crackers, of you could take a look at their other menu options.
Live Well
At Cedars, they want to promote healthy, active lifestyles.  Employees are offered discounted gym memberships and the restaurant will occasionally offer deals to those customers with very active lifestyles.  Co-owner Randy Gier is an active marathoner and really promotes the healthy lifestyle in his own actions.
Feel Good
Cedars, outside of the actual restaurant, also wants to make an effort to give back to the community.  In the short time that they have been open, they have already supported fundraisers and are planning to participate in charity runs in the community.  They support both adult and your activities and events that promote the idea of living healthy lifestyles.
 
 
 
 

Flame-kissed

02/24

Cedars Woodfire Grill exudes refreshing backyard barbecue
by Jessica Rush
 
Randy Gier considers his role to be Chief Eating Officer.  But as the owner of Cedars Woodfire Grill, his actual job has been to help create a restaurant that is just as much about the experience of dining well as the freshly grilled food that is prepared there. 
Gier, a Plano resident and marathon runner, worked with co-founder Laurie Curtis to design a family-friendly restaurant with no freezers, no fryers and no microwaves.  Only fresh ingredients are allowed in the variety of American-fusion dishes, and every dish fits a budget at under $10.
Combined, Gier and Curtis have more than 45 years of experience in the food and restaurant industries, but they were both frustrated with the gap between healthy dining options and the more tempting fast food.  Cedars is their solution.
"People want great-tasting food, and they want to balance that with nutrition,"  Gier said.  "I always felt there was a better way."  The three-part mission - "Eat well, live well, feel good" - is visible as visitors walk up to the restaurant. 
The first part of the commitment is accomplished by making virtually everything in the restaurant fresh, daily.....

Dallas Business Journal

02/18

Cedars Woodfire Grill celebrated its grand opening in Plano with a friends-and-family event benefiting the Dallas Area Coalition to Prevent Childhood Obesity (DACPCO).  Attendee's donations went toward helping combat childhood obesity in Collin and Dallas counties.  

Cedars Woodfire Grill, fresh grilled under-$10, opening in Plano January 31

01/27

PLANO — Cedars Woodfire Grill will be serving up freshly grilled food in a warm, family-friendly setting, when the fast-casual restaurant opens January 31 in Plano. Carefully chosen ingredients lead to inspired flavors in the salads, bowls, sandwiches, and soups that cost under $10 each. Founders say the concept is the first of its kind.
 
At Cedars, there are no freezers, no fryers, and no microwaves. All food is prepared in-house. The Cedars “unprocessed process” means using only the freshest produce and herbs, as well as all-natural meats that are simply prepared and cooked over a wood-fired grill. Customers choose from a variety of salad, sandwich, or bowl options and then add the protein of their choice (all-natural chicken, USDA choice steak, fresh Atlantic salmon, or baby bella mushrooms). Sample menu items include Steakhouse Chop Salad, Summer Harvest Salad, Southwestern Torta Wrap, Cedars Signature Griller, and for kids, Use-Your-Noodle Bowl and Pizzadilla, among many other selections. Dessert is a fun, decadent S'mores Fondue.

Cedars serves a wide range of beverages, including wine, beer and a signature Rum Rita. For younger tastes, the menu includes apple juice and milk.

“Cedars is the first of a new generation of restaurants,” says Randy Gier, founder and CEO (chief eating officer). “We‟re cooking great-tasting food, without using freezers, fryers, or microwaves. And everything is under $10. No other restaurant has tried this idea before, but with our deep background in the industry, we knew it could be done.

“When you eat well, you naturally have the energy to do what you love, whether that's running or biking or being active in the PTA,” Gier continues. “Our commitment is ultimately to that active lifestyle. We call it „Eat Well. Live Well. Feel Good.‟”

Upon entering Cedars, diners will be enveloped by the aromas of cedar, cherry and mesquite from the woodfire grill in the middle of the restaurant. As the heart of Cedars, the grill imparts robust flavor to the food and anchors a warm, inviting atmosphere that evokes a backyard barbecue.

Customers order from a digital menu board and children can pick their own meals from a photo menu board placed at just their height. While deciding what to order, customers can instantly get nutritional details by sending a text message. Customers then watch their food made fresh to order in the open kitchen, or relax in the dining area or on the patio, where food will be delivered.

The speedy service is perfect for families on the go. But Cedars encourages customers with more time to order a Share-Able like the Vegetable Bruschetta, or linger over wine or coffee. Friendly servers will staff the dining area, so customers can order additional food or beverages without getting back in line.

“Life is all about making balanced choices,” says Laurie Curtis, co-founder and chief concept officer. “At Cedars we make it easy for people to find balance in their meals with dishes that taste delicious and just happen to be healthy. We‟re all about good food, good conversation and fueling our bodies to go out and live a great life.”

Cedars Woodfire Grill (www.cedarswoodfiregrill) is located at 6509 W. Park Blvd., on the northeast corner of Park and Midway in Plano. Hours are 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 11a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday; and 10:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. Sunday. Curbside service is available.