Mad Radish opens in Barrhaven

By Charlie Senack

A new restaurant has opened in Barrhaven which aims to provide healthy alternatives to fast food.

Mad Radish opened its doors at 34 Highbury Park Drive just a few weeks ago and co-owners David Segal and Stephanie Howarth say they are trying to change the minds of how people look at healthy eating. The restaurant is surrounded by services that relate to a healthy and active lifestyle including: Holistic Wellness Physiotherapy, OrangeTheory Fitness and Elevate Spin.

“Mad Radish is all about gourmet fast food,” says Segal. “We believe that fast food should not be bad food and should taste great, leave you feeling nourished and feeling great.”

The healthy eating restaurant has three brands under one roof which reflects cultures from all around the world. Mad Radish itself caters to international flavours and offers great-tasting, internationally inspired healthy food – including sandwiches, salads and a selection of warm bowls, according to its website. Luisa’s Burritos and Bowls is South American inspired and offers “hand-crafted burritos made with fresh ingredients and big, bold flavour. Revival pizza puts a modern and creative twist on the ultimate comfort food.”

David Segal is also the founder of David’s Tea, the largest Canadian-based specialty tea boutique in the country. He, alongside Stephanie Howarth, left the tea franchise behind because they felt Canadians deserved better quality fast food.

Mad Radish is open on Highbury Park in Barrhaven.

Mad Radish also caters to all diets and has food options available for those who are carnivores, omnivores, vegan, or for those on the Keto diet, says Segal. He adds that healthy food shouldn’t taste like medicine.

“I myself had a lot of diet restrictions and issues and that is partly from how I ate while building David’s Tea,” said Segal. “I was travelling a lot (and) I did not have access to quality fast food. Thankfully I have gotten to a place where I can eat more and more foods because I am now healthier and I have improved my diet. I have healed a lot through food.”

Both Segal and Howarth said they felt Barrhaven was the perfect location to open their next location because it’s the exact type of service a community like this needs. Parents are busy running to soccer practice and piano lessons with their kids, leaving little time to cook a hearty meal. Even so, they want to remain healthy.

Mad Radish was started three years ago and currently has seven locations — four in Ottawa and three in Toronto. They are looking to open a location in Kanata in early 2022 and are also looking for a spot in Orleans.

As they continue to expand and grow in popularity, Mad Radish also wants to focus on giving back to the communities that support them. The location in Barrhaven donated $3,000 from their first week in business to three elementary schools in the community.

“The reception we have had in Barrhaven has been phenomenal. We had high expectations already but it’s been even better than we could have ever imagined,” said Howarth, who also works on the brand and marketing at Mad Radish.

“We have partnered with three local schools and we donated the proceeds of our first week in business,” she added. “The response was so warm and supportive, we were able to donate $3,000 to St. Luke’s, St. Andrews, and Monsignor Paul Baxter schools.”

Mad Radish also donated to Community Food Centres Canada, which operates out of Perth, Ontario. They are a modern-day food bank which focuses on putting humanity first — all with a stance on healthy foods.

As they try to change the way we view healthy food, Segal says they are more concerned about creating an impact than expanding their franchise.

“We want to bring healthy food to communities across Canada, but right now we are laser focused in making healthy food changeable,” he said. “We all know the feeling of being sluggish after eating normal fast food and we also know about craving that meal. We want you to crave healthy food so that you can feel great after eating it.”