.Aptos’ Carried Away Elevates Takeout

Mid-County restaurant takes a gourmet approach to to-go

Maribel Martinez began working at Carried Away in Aptos while attending Cabrillo College. Coincidentally, her dad and uncle were offered ownership of the longtime restaurant in 2018—they also brought Maribel on as a co-owner. While her father had owned a restaurant before, her uncle, Renee, is the chef and backbone of Carried Away. Maribel, meanwhile, does a little bit of everything, ensuring the business’ success. She says the menu—scratch-made and featuring about 90% organic ingredients—centers around deli fare and comfort food, with three entrée options that rotate weekly. Takeout, as the name implies, makes up a majority of the business.
Some menu favorites include the vegetarian enchiladas and their signature potato artichoke gratin; wild salmon is another popular dish, and the pumpkin turkey chili is always a seasonal standout. For dessert, the top dogs are the strawberry-walnut apple crisp and housemade coconut tapioca pudding.
Hours are Monday-Saturday, 11am-5pm. Recently, Maribel delved further into her restaurant with GT

What is Carried Away’s concept?

MARIBEL MARTINEZ: It is all about comfort food that you would normally cook at home, but you are able to come here and “carry it away” instead. And the place has a lot of history, we’ve been around a long time and we were one of the first restaurants to popularize utilizing organic ingredients. Even though it’s to-go food, it’s not fast food, and we focus on using healthy ingredients for people on the go. And even with rising food costs, we’ve tried to stay competitively priced and keep the quality of the food high.

How has it been going from employee to owner?

As an employee, I would observe our former manager and how she would interact with catering clients. It got me very excited because it was usually for big events like weddings and graduations. Food is how a lot of people come together. I didn’t realize how much work it would take to be an owner, but it’s very fulfilling, and hearing people rave about us is the momentum that keeps us going.

Carried Away, 7564 Soquel Drive, Aptos, 831-685-3926.

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