HeartWise Express, a health conscious quick-serve restaurant giving new meaning to the term “fast food,” introduces five new ethnically inspired menu items. In keeping with their offering of healthy global cuisine, HeartWise Express has added the Chili Crusted Chicken Bowl, Shanghai Noodle Salad, Killer Tofu Salad Sandwich, Jive Turkey Burger, and Roasted Plantains to the gourmet style menu that has struck a chord with the Chicago market.

“Diners are constantly looking for new ethnic styles of eating, and unlike traditional fast food restaurants, HeartWise Express strives to continually introduce foods and flavors from around the globe,” said Michael Moorman, Managing Partner of HeartWise Express. “HeartWise offers wholesome simple foods that are nutritious, served attractively, and leave customers feeling satisfied.”

New menu offerings include the Chili Crusted Chicken Bowl, a whole chili crusted chicken breast with red beans and rice, topped with a tangy Creole sauce; the Shanghai Noodle Salad, a combination of flat wheat noodles, carrots, red cabbage, red peppers, red onion, and snow peas topped with chicken or tofu and sesame balsamic vinaigrette; and the Killer Tofu Salad Sandwich, a delicious blend of tofu, celery, onion and seasonings served on pumpernickel bread.

HeartWise has also introduced the Jive Turkey Burger, a fresh ground burger seasoned and grilled on a whole wheat Kaiser roll; and Roasted Plantains, Cuban style green bananas sliced and tossed in seasonings then roasted to perfection and served with honey mustard dipping sauce.

“We evaluate our menu on a regular basis and continually make changes based on customer response and current trends in the foodservice industry,” said Moorman. “Where else can fast-food diners find Roasted Plantains? It’s all about quality, taste presentation and variety.”

HeartWise Express offers a healthy alternative to typical fast food chains by serving a wide variety of low-fat, high quality menu items in a quick serve format. The diverse menu features smoothies, wraps, rice & noodle bowls, veggie burgers, sandwiches, salads, side dishes and fresh baked goods, all prepared with less fat and more fresh and natural ingredients. Nutrition information for each item is clearly displayed on menus and tabletop charts.

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The 2,703 square foot restaurant with seating capacity for 85 guests serves breakfast along with fresh in-house baked goods and a full lunch/dinner menu. Hours of operation are 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. HeartWise Express serves an average of 1,000 customers a day and estimates 35% of their lunchtime customers frequent the restaurant 2-3 times per week.

HeartWise Express was founded by Rosemary Deahl, CEO of Big Deal Productions, a Chicago-based commercial film production company specializing in the food industry. After years of working closely with prominent fast food restaurants, Deahl discovered a void in the market for healthy, fast and tastefully presented cuisine, which led to the development of the HeartWise Express concept. In 1996, HeartWise Express opened its doors at 10 South LaSalle, Chicago. Deahl plans to expand the HeartWise concept both locally and nationally.