Go Mad For Teriyaki At Teriyaki Madness In Downtown Lakeland
by James Coulter
Looking for a quick and affordable lunch? Don’t want to settle for greasy hamburgers or sandwiches? Then visit Downtown Lakeland’s newest eatery in the Nobay plaza: Teriyaki Madness.
With a diverse combination of meats, rice, and vegetables to choose from, you can go mad over the Seattle-style teriyaki served there by creating your own rice bowl. Just pick your meat, pick your rice, and pick your sauce, and you have yourself a hearty, healthy meal deal.
Whether you like chicken, beef, or tofu, whether you prefer white, brown, or fried rice, or whether you prefer your meal spicy and wild or tame and mild, you can create a rice bowl that’s right for you. Best of all, they offer selections that are vegetarian and gluten-friendly.
“They can expect great food at a great price with a great atmosphere, a wonderful experience to begin with,” said owner Becky Richmond. “And every order is cooked to order, it is completely customizable. You can have it extra spicy, with more cabbage, anyway that you would prefer it.”
Her husband and co-owner, Ryan, prior to opening their new business, previously served in the Coast Guard for 22 years. He served ten years in active duty before serving on an icebreaker in Antarctica for three and a half years, helping break ice and perform ship repairs.
His last station was in Omaha, Nebraska. Following his retirement, Ryan moved with Becky, who was transferred by her job to Florida. The two of them loved the change in weather from cold and snowy to warm and sunny, Becky said.
“My husband and I were excited to become Floridians,” she said. “When we decided to open a business, Lakeland was the perfect spot. It has a small town feel and atmosphere, but we are close to anything anyone could ever want a large city has to offer.”
They had previously run a Christmas tree business together when they first met in college and later married. Now they wanted to return to their roots by running a small business together, preferably a restaurant.
The two attended a franchise show in Tampa, where they met a consultant who presented them with three options. One of these options was Teriyaki Madness, which sounded especially intriguing to them. Before they settled on their decision, they both traveled to Cape Coral to visit the restaurant and see what it had to offer.
“We went to Cape Coral and ordered one of everything on the menu so we can taste everything and see what it is like,” Becky said. “The food was so good as we were driving home from that adventure, we looked at each other and said this was it, this was the one. Really, it was the food that sold us.”
What especially sold them on the food was how it was not your typical fast food selections with hamburgers and sandwiches. Teriyaki Madness offers more diverse and healthier selections, which are ideal for current trends on healthier eating.
“We did not want to be a regular fast food place,” he said. “We wanted healthier options. We came across Teriyaki Madness. It was the perfect mold with good food and fast casual made to order…It is really popular, especially for health-conscious people with fresh food and produce.”
Transitioning from the military to the business sector seemed like an easy fix for both of them. Having grown up in a military family with her sister in the Air Force and other members in other services, Becky was used to protocol and safety being a top priority, which is also a high priority for running a business, she said.
“With the military, it is safety first,” she said. “He brings that aspect of that with safety first, ensuring that a day in the kitchen is safe and sanitary and clean and perfect, just the element of detail, making sure everything is by the book as it should be.”
“Business is similar, in my opinion, to the military,” Ryan added. “There are rules and procedures you must follow, you must keep everything clean. So as far as that goes, you have a chain of command, you have your lieges, your managers, and your owners. Even in that aspect, it is the same.”
With the new eatery having recently opened, both Becky and Ryan expect their eatery to be the perfect fit for Downtown Lakeland, with its high-energy lifestyle providing a demand for high-energy food such as theirs.
“I think we have high expectations,” he said. “I think people here are going to love it. And it is excellent high-quality food. What is not to like?”
Teriyaki Madness is located at 304 N. Kentucky Ave, Lakeland, Fl, 33801. For more information, visit their Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/tmad115/