It was just over 10 years ago in Boston that two boyhood friends sought to make a dream come true. This dream was to open a restaurant that sold healthy, wholesome food quickly. The company’s founders, Jon and Anthony grew up on nutritious food from Anthony’s Uncle Faris’ kitchen. When the two went off to college they did what many college kids do - they indulged on fast food. While they loved the food, they hated how it made them look and feel. And thus the idea of b.good was born and based on the simple premise that they would offer people “fast” food by making it “real” – Food “made by people, not factories.” As they embarked on this journey, they heeded Uncle Faris’ other pieces of advice: “Take it easy, live life, and most of all ‘be good.’"
With many successful restaurants already established in New England, North Carolina, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Toronto, Canada, the newest location has just opened in my town of Fairfield. (Greenwich will also open its door shortly.)
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to meet with Steve Hourihan, owner of the newest b. good restaurant in my hometown of Fairfield, and a Fairfield resident himself. A former commodities trader, Hourihan was an early investor in the b.good company. Hourihan, who had taken a few years off to be with his family, was ready to re-enter the workplace and found himself presented with a tremendous opportunity. After taking some time away from his former career in order to spend more time with his young children, he was ready to re-enter the workforce when this incredible occasion intercepted. “The perfect opportunity came at the right time. This is exactly what I needed,” Hourihan told me. “I’m always having fun and always learning. I love being able to give back to the community, and hiring local people.”
b.good is unlike any restaurant I have been to. When you walk through the front doors, the feeling is anything but “fast food.” b. good occupies the long empty space at 1460 Post Road. Rich leathers, woods and warm paint tones create a welcoming atmosphere. A fireplace sits underneath the large photograph of Uncle Faris and will certainly be a popular seating choice on cooler days. To the right of the front door, a large bar awaits customers to come in and enjoy smoothies and shakes made to order. To the left plenty of comfortable seating for those who want to take time to relax and enjoy their “fast” food. Overhead, a large map hangs overhead showing customers where their food comes from, offering a sense of comfort and community. While items are currently sourced from all over New England, Hourihan works with several Connecticut farms and businesses including Grey Wall Farm, part of the Farmer’s Cow family, Botticello Farms in Manchester, and Bucks Ice Cream in Milford. Hourihan is currently talking to several local farmers.
A creative and seasonal menu truly offers something for everyone – Southwest Goat Cheese, Harvest Kale, Watermelon and Feta and Southwestern Chicken are the current salads on the menu. Kale and grain or quinoa bowls include Spicy Avocado & Lime, Power Bowl, Farmstand Tomato Basil, Toasted Almond & Ginger, andApple & Bacon. For those with a heartier appetite select from Burgers and Sandwiches which include turkey and veggie burgers and a grilled chicken sandwich with plenty of creative and toppings to choose form: Cousin Oliver - lettuce, tomato, onion, Chef Tony’s homemade pickles; West Side - avocado, cilantro, fresh salsas, chipotle puree, lime;Buffalo – buffalo sauce, blue cheese, marinated carrots, shaved celery; El Guapo – bacon, homemade jalapeno slaw, jalapeno ranch; Adopted Luke – mushrooms, caramelized onions, smoked Gouda, bbq sauce. Sweet potato and real fries are available. There’s a children’s menu as well. Soon, as the weather starts to cool, a new fall menu will roll out.
I had the opportunity to try a few of the items on the menu. The Kale Crush is a favorite among kids and adults alike. Emerald green in color this sweet beverage tastes mostly of the apples, pineapples and banana blended that give this wholesome crush a taste that’s sweet and refreshing – perfect for a mid-morning or afternoon pick-me-up, and filling enough for a pre-workout energy boost.
The Watermelon and Feta salad is a perfect choice for those who like a sweet and savory combination. Generous slices of watermelon and feta sit atop a generous serving of collard greens, super grans, black eyed peas, corn, dried cranberries, scallions, sunflower seeds and mint, gently coated in a red wine vinegar and oil dressing. The Spicy Avocado & Limemight well become a favorite of mine. This bowl, also generously sized, is brimming w kale, sautéed veggies, avocado, queso freso, black beans, corn, grape tomatoes, lime, and cilantro and topped with a chipotle puree and red pepper vinaigrette. Zesty, refreshing and filling, this salad bowl is a filling and refreshing option. Choose between quinoa and a mix of super grains (short grain brown rice, kamut wheat, hard red wheat berries, millet and lentils) to create a dish to your liking.
Next to try was the El Guapo burger. If you’ve never tried locally farmed beef, you really must. This burger, topped with avocado, bacon, jalapeno slaw and a jalapeno ranch. Fresh, zesty and satisfying, this burger will have you re-evaluate your thoughts on fast food. A serving of real fries accompanied my sandwich. Blanched and then oven baked, these fries taste more like potato than most – and you don’t have to feel guilty with this indulgence!
It should be noted that my children were happy taste testers too. I brought my un-sampled portions back home for them to try after school. The burger reheated beautifully, and the fries crisped up well in the oven. My boys inhaled their portions. The leftover salads were divvied up 3 ways. The Spicy Avocado & Lime bowl held up really well and all three said they’d have it again, they preferred it over the Watermelon and Feta. The Fairfield location is open Monday through Saturday from 11:00 am to 9:00 pm and until 8:00 pm on Sundays.
I’m delighted to welcome b.good to the Fairfield community where I know they will be welcomed with open arms. Creative options that are delicious and fast in a warm and inviting setting are certainly a recipe for success. As a working mother of 3, I’m happy to have a healthy, affordable and fast dining option that fits into our busy schedules.
1460 Post Road
* A version of this previously ran on CTBites