At TOP NOTCH LUNCHES, we’re all about bringing a fresh product to San Diegans and families in adjacent counties. We want school lunches to be something that both parents and their kids love. Anybody can go to the store, buy some packaged frozen meal, and heat it up in a microwave, but we think kids and their parents deserve better. They deserve fresh local products, food made from scratch each day, and an array of tasty meal choices that are easy to order.
Claye Cantwell, founder of TOP NOTCH LUNCHES, is no stranger to giving San Diegans food they love. Born and raised in San Diego, he ran an area restaurant and bar right out of college. Soon thereafter, he was asked to start a food program for a small school attended by a friend’s daughter.
After learning more about the industry and the needs of San Diego schools and families, Claye decided to use his passion for healthful food and an active lifestyle to launch a modern, creative, and affordably priced school lunch service: Top Notch Lunches.
“I love making lunches here in San Diego using local products and getting them to the kids as quickly as possible — keeping it fresh,” Claye says. “We’ve got a great team, from our talented chefs to the cheerful servers who work at each school. Together, we’re always asking ourselves how we can make our meals even better and more appealing for kids. It’s our ongoing motivation.”
Claye started TOP NOTCH LUNCHES near San Diego’s Mesa area in 2011 and began building the business by inviting some of his favorite local chefs to join the Top Notch team. With a shared dedication to working hard and making great food, the Top Notch team has developed close relationships with local food vendors and crafted fresh, visually pleasing menus for numerous schools and organizations serving kids.
Schools, parents, and kids have appreciated the care and creativity put into every meal, and Top Notch Lunches has grown quickly while keeping its commitment to making fresh, imaginative meals. Today, the company operates out of a 4,000-square-foot facility in Chula Vista, working with other local companies to keep it fresh, always.