Noodles & Co. shake off long slump thanks to non-noodles

Illustration for article titled Noodles  Co. shake off long slump thanks to non-noodlesem/em
Photo: Noodles & Co.

Noodles & Co. has found an unlikely, non-pasta savior: zoodles. You know, those spiralized zucchini ribbons that are “totally just like noodles, but low-carb!”? Yeah, apparently people actually like those things, because zoodles have single-handedly turned around Noodles & Co.’s lagging sales.

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Nation’s Restaurant News reports the newly introduced zoodles are to thank for the pasta chain’s best quarter in six years. The zucchini ribbons also led to the company’s first positive same-store sales since early 2015. Behold the power of zoodles, I guess.

Company execs say zoodles are drawing in new, carb-conscious customers who might not otherwise visit a pasta restaurant, but they’re also popular among existing customers who are swapping traditional noodles for the zoodle option in their favorite dishes. According to NRN, executive chairman Paul Murphy said zoodles have encouraged people “to really kind of re-ID the company and what Noodle stands for.”

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Look, good for Noodles & Co. or whatever. But zoodles are not noodles. I do not want to reimagine noodles. Noodles are great the way they are! I can only imagine Nonas everywhere clutching their chests at the thought of zoodles fagiole, or zoodles all’Amatriciana, or zoodles e pepe. I’m truly happy for the customers who have found a veggie-based dish they like, but let’s not let zoodles push out good old-fashioned gluten entirely.

Kate Bernot is a freelance writer and a certified beer judge. She was previously managing editor at The Takeout.

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DISCUSSION

ubercultute
uberculture

Ohhhh... I saw someone on Instagram complaining that her boyfriend always ordered Zoodles, and I had no clue what they were talking about.  Aren’t spiralizers a 2015 trend?