First Watch opened the doors to its Gateway Retail location on Monday. | Credit: First Watch Restaurants

First Watch, a Florida-based breakfast and brunch restaurant, expanded its Columbus footprint into the Gateway Retail Center on Monday, further expanding the campus area’s food options.

The popular eatery is located down the street from campus at 1567 N. High St. and will be the Florida-based breakfast chain’s ninth Columbus restaurant.

With fast-casual restaurants like Blaze Pizza and Bibibop dominating High Street, Christiana Moffa, property manager at Gateway, said the options for casual eateries were restricted.

A lot of the comments we received were from OSU staff working in nearby offices, and of course we get a lot of customers from both the medical center and main campus who have expressed interest in more diverse dining experiences,” she said in an email.  

After seeing the chain’s creative menu appeal to younger audiences, Eleni Kouvatsos, public relations and communication manager for First Watch Restaurants, said its opened First Watch in a few college towns with outstanding response from students, faculty and community members alike.

The restaurant features best-seller menu items including avocado toast, lemon ricotta pancakes and quinoa power bowls, and Kouvatsos said in an email it will also introduce five seasonal menus throughout the year in addition to the menu’s core items.

“One of the great things about First Watch is that our menu is diverse enough to satisfy the healthiest eater, right alongside someone who’s craving a sweet treat or a hangover-curing breakfast sandwich.”

The chain’s menu prices vary by location, but prices at the Gateway First Watch typically range from $7 to $11.

First Watch will be joining Panera Bread on the corner of 11th Avenue and High Street and TRISM on the corner of High Street and Chittenden Avenue as a South Campus spot offering breakfast and brunch, though it will be the only eatery of the three that provides table service.