Chop Stop celebrated the opening of its second location in Encino Tuesday morning, with a ribbon cutting ceremony and complimentary menu samples for the neighborhood.
The new healthy addition to the community’s dining scene is located at 17332 Ventura Blvd.
The idea for the restaurant came to owner Mark Kulkis, 46, in June of last year when he found himself craving a chopped salad late at night, and wasn’t sure where to go. He opened the first location in Burbank in January.
More than two dozen people helped usher in the new restaurant, including members of the Encino Chamber of Commerce and Valley Field Deputy to Council Member Paul Koretz, Jeff Ebenstein, who awarded Kulkis with a certificate from the City of Los Angeles.
“It’s great to have something healthy and affordable like this opening in this economy,” Ebenstein said.
Among the salad samples passed throughout the crowd were the Viva Mexico Chop, Asian Chop, and Caesar Chop. The Viva Mexico Chop is a customer favorite, according to Kulkis.
The store offers 12 chopped salads that Kulkis and General Manager Joey Gonzalez designed, but clients are welcome to create their own "chops" as well.
The menu offers each customer an easy three-step walk-through on “how to make a chop”:
Step one: Pick a green.
Step two: Pick any six toppings from veggies, meats, and nuts to fruits, beans and cheeses.
Step three: Choose a dressing.
Once ordered and prepared fresh, the salads are packaged in containers that are completely compostable. The cutlery is made with plant starch and the to-go bags are earth-friendly as well.
The restaurant also serves frozen yogurt that can be topped with some of the chopped nuts and fruit.
Kulkis opened Chop Stop in the Valley because he feels it’s underserved when it comes to healthy dining options, he said.
“If this does as well as Burbank, in another six to nine months, I’ll open another one,” Kulkis said.