Mendocino Farms Opens In-Store at Whole Foods

Can you say, “yum?” Mendocino Farms just opened its first location in a Whole Foods Market in Tustin, CA, with a 140-seat shared dining room within the store that includes a bar with craft beer and wine and the grocer’s prepared foods.

To properly kick off the grand opening, Mendocino Farms partnered with Tustin chef Yvon Goetz of The Winery Restaurant & Wine Bar to create a sandwich featuring that restaurant’s famed zinfandel-braised short ribs. The sandwich will only be available until December 4th with all proceeds from the sandwich to be donated to the Tustin Public Schools Foundation.

The Mendocino Farm menu includes the chain’s signature sandwiches and salads, including the Pork Belly Banh Mi, the Not So Fried Chicken and an Avocado & Quinoa Superfood Ensalada.

This isn’t the first time Whole Foods has been adding local restaurant operators to its food lineup in stores across the country. Others include Los Angeles chef Roy Choi’s Kogi and Chego restaurants in Southern California, and the CheU Noodle Bar in Philadelphia.

Whole Food’s investment in Mendocino Farms will immensely help the fast-casual sandwich concept grow. Despite the fact it is a chain, Mendocino Farms restaurants each have a unique design to fit the local community. However, all locations feature the blue cow mascot somewhere in the design. Mario Del Pero, Mendocino Farms’ co-founder, says the company will study how the in-market location works before moving into more Whole Food stores.

As a small restaurant chain that has always used fresh and local ingredients, Mendocino Farms is excited to venture into the new arena of grocery chain procedures and requirements. Mendocino Farms has bright, and growing, future ahead of them!