The Souplantation Story – A Culture Of Culinary Creation. Since its beginnings, Sweet Tomatoes Specials has been a place of creation, from the inception of our restaurant concept down to the very meals our guests are able to make using the farm-fresh menu items of our salad bar and buffet.
Our story begins in 1978 in San Diego County, where two California surfers had a vision to make a healthy spot to eat where possibilities were endless. They decided they wanted to open a restaurant packed with options that used the freshest fruit and veggies, plus soups and baked goods created from scratch, all following homemade recipes bursting with flavor. Not just would this restaurant become a location to eat, but additionally a location in which the farm meets the table and families gather to get a healthy dining experience all of its own.
Today, 97 restaurants and millions of guests later, Souplantation continues to grow to the salad bar and buffet place to go for farm-fresh, scratch-made offerings for those to experience!
Souplantation’s Supply Chain Commitments – Souplantation takes the caliber of its food very seriously in order to provide our guests the most effective options when they elect to dine with us. You want our restaurant buffets to be filled with options that does not only taste great, but make you feel great too. This means our owner and operator Garden Fresh Restaurants upholds high standards in terms of sourcing the ingredients we use to create our menu items. Dedicated to freshness, quality, and safety, our standards are made to maintain humane, ethical, and sustainable business practices.
Souplantation, which operates as Sweet Tomatoes away from southern California, is actually a United States-based chain of-you-can-eat buffet-style restaurants. The first Souplantation opened in 1978 in San Diego, California, where the company is headquartered. The company was incorporated as Garden Fresh Corp. in 1983. The company went public in 1995 but was taken private in 2004. The company is belonging to Garden Fresh Restaurant Corporation
he first Souplantation restaurant opened on Mission Gorge Road in San Diego, in 1978. It was the idea of Dennis Jay, who has been a bartender at Springfield Wagon Works, a pioneer in Salad bars in El Cajon. Dennis’s good friends, John Turnbull and Scott King were opening their first Soup and Salad restaurant The Soup Exchange. Dennis was impressed using the new concept and introduced Steve Hohe, the Springfield Restaurant manager and Ron Demery, a bail bondsman and long time friend to John and Scott. Dennis, Steve and Ron made a decision to partner up to produce a parallel concept, the Sweet Tomatoes Hours Hours Of Operation. The 2 concepts grew alongside in a friendly, mutually supportive, yet competitive environment for a number of years. This restaurant along with a second one in Point Loma were purchased in 1983 by Garden Fresh Restaurant Corp, founded by Michael Mack to use the chain.
The company has expanded over the American West and Southwest, as well as opened locations in a number of Southeast states, including 23 restaurants in Florida. Each of the restaurants are company-owned. In 2005, an online affiliate from the ilcifm investment firm Sun Capital Partners purchased Garden Fresh and with it the restaurant chains. At the time of October 2016, 104 locations remain in operation throughout the usa. In 2017, Garden Fresh as well as its restaurant chains were purchased by the Ny private investment firm Cerberus Capital Management