We’re delighted to reflect on our long history with our June social media partner, the Good Food Guys. Entrepreneurs Andrew Swallow and David Silverglide’s venture, Good Food Guys, is on the verge of opening its 10th restaurant. With locations in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and upcoming in San Jose, they’re applying lessons learned through years of developing their well-known salad spot Mixt Greens to a new concept – an emporium of memorable sandwiches, Split Bread.
WDA is proud to have collaborated with the Good Food Guys at the inception of both Mixt Greens and Split Bread. Both brands grew out of Swallow’s restaurant background and Silverglide’s business experience, coupled with their desire to deliver delicious, locally sourced and seasonal food in an enjoyable atmosphere. They are passionate about bringing great food to as many people as possible.
Swallow worked on the Split Bread concept for years before opening the first store in the summer of 2012: he’s been experimenting with and perfecting the recipes ever since he worked in a sandwich shop as a teenager. In much the same way, he worked through multiple iterations of ideas for the space to house his unique recipes. WDA associate Jonathan Tsurui, who has worked closely with Swallow from the beginning of the Split Bread concept, describes Andrew as “heavily involved–there’s not an aspect there he doesn’t have a hand in; he loves the store.” The first location emphasized the wall of rotisserie ovens behind the kitchen counter; its primary driver of design was “bringing people back to the kitchen.” In addition, the restaurant embraced a revolutionary cashless point of sale. In addition to WDA, Swallow enlisted the talented Geremia Design for interiors and Rubber Design for graphics. Working within the constraints of a high-ceilinged, narrow space on the exterior of an urban mall and entertainment complex, the team Swallow assembled created a memorable space for Split Bread’s debut.
Split Bread is still evolving in a way that’s true to the Good Food Guys’ basic principles: serving great food, environmental sustainability, team members who love their jobs, and great customer service. For the second location in SoMa, Swallow strives to improve both the customer and employee experience. Using valuable information about flow patterns at the first location, he’s adding additional, comfortable space for queuing while to-go orders are prepared. He also has improved the kitchen design for comfort and better management of the restaurant’s new breakfast and coffee items. Tsurui has enjoyed participating in Split Bread’s growth: “Andrew is super creative and he knows what he wants. The fun part is making it work.” Swallow returns Tsurui’s admiration: “It’s great working with William Duff’s team – they really know how to turn our visions into reality!”
Simultaneously, WDA is working on the 8th Mixt Greens location. While the Mixt Greens brand is more established, Tsurui sees the rollout of their stores as anything but routine: “one of the great things about working with a well-known brand is getting a new space and figuring out how to fit that same idea in there.” Mixt Greens’ commitment to green building, part of its eco-gourmet principles, also allows us to share and apply our knowledge about sustainable materials. We’ve had fun over the years helping nurture the great ideas for Mixt Greens and Split Bread into working spaces that reinforce their vision, and we wish Andrew and David continued success in their expanding quest to provide Good Food throughout California, and beyond.