It's only natural . . . Boulder, Colorado-based Wild Oats Community Market has come to town, with one stylin' store opening today at 27249 Chagrin Boulevard (216-464-9403) in the Village Square shopping plaza and a second one scheduled to open on Shaker Square by Thanksgiving. The natural foods market was founded by healthy eaters Mike Gilliland and Libby Cook back in 1987 and has since grown to more than 110 locations nationwide. The stores, which racked up $212.8 million in sales during the first quarter of this year, specialize in organic produce, chemical- and preservative-free groceries, and hormone- and antibiotic-free meats. Each store also offers a wide variety of dine-in/carry-out prepared foods, including pizzas, Asian noodles, Mexican tacos, and vegetarian sandwiches. Wild Oats's largest regional competitor will no doubt be our own homegrown Mustard Seed Market and Café, with locations in Solon and Montrose.
A slow trek . . . The journey to the new Amazon Trail restaurant in Twinsburg's Town Centre shopping plaza (8870 Darrow Road, 330-425-7373) has been more harrowing than owners Seth Task, Rick Agnew, and Paul Levine had anticipated, but the end is finally in sight. Although the partners had hoped that the casual, family-friendly restaurant, with its rainforest-themed decor and a menu of steaks, chops, and seafood, would open this past April, construction delays played havoc with the schedule. Now, however, you can expect to hear the jungle drums start beating on Thursday, August 24. Meanwhile, those with a taste for adventure have been directed to the trio's original Amazon Trail location at 6611 Eastland Road in Middleburg Heights. The partners plan to take the concept nationwide in the not-so-distant future.
He's a daddy . . . Mark Wilson, the hale and hearty chef at the Grovewood Tavern, is reportedly doing fine after the birth of his son, Joshua Aaron, on Tuesday, August 1. The little cutie pie, who made his entrance right around lunchtime, is the first for Mark and his wife, Karen. And yes, mother and son are dandy, too.