The Kirkwood City Council last week approved a special use exception permit for a new restaurant in Kirkwood, whose owner says will give residents a “healthier alternative to what’s around.”
Gregory Owens, of Des Peres, said he will open HotPot Smoothie Shop, a cafe that will offer organic, vegan and vegetarian options, sometime in May. The eatery will be located at 11215 Manchester Rd., which used to house a pottery studio.
“I’ve always wanted to have a place where my family, my children, could go and eat good quality, healthy food that was also tasty,” said Owens, who worked as a chef in Florida and specialized in healthy food. “Kirkwood doesn’t really have an artistic coffee house cafe that offers healthy options. We thought this was the perfect place to have it.”
Owens said he will offer food for all tastes, including Asian street food, vegetarian and vegan options, coffee, tea, smoothies and more. He said one of his priorities will be the ingredients used in the food.
“We want to strive to use only local and organic as much as we can,” said Owens, a parent of three children in the .
Owens said he thought there were not many healthy alternatives to the food of other restaurants in Kirkwood. He said HotPot smoothie will be a place for everyone.
student Kelly Glueck, who is a vegetarian, said she was excited to hear about the cafe opening in Kirkwood. Glueck said many vegan and vegetarian students she knows at Meramec wish they had more places where they could find the food they want.
“In my two years at Meramec, I have seen a bare minimum of vegetarian options around,” Glueck said.
Owens, however, said he wanted his restaurant to serve everybody. He said he doesn’t hope to convert anyone to eating only organic, healthy or vegetarian food.
“I think I just want us to be another option,” Owens said. “Most importantly, you have to enjoy food. Any diet you go into, if you don’t enjoy it, it’s not working. I don’t expect for everyone to eat all natural and all organic, but every little bit helps.”
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