Scores of customers snagged a free lunch from a new Greenwich restaurant Tuesday, but it did appear to come at a small cost.

Cava, the Mediterranean fast casual food joint, drew a bustling lunch crowd on its opening “community day,” where customers received a free lunch from noon to 2 p.m. The value of each meal was donated to Grow To Learn, a New York City-based nonprofit that partners with schools to create urban gardens.

Tuesday afternoon, cars wrapped around the parking lot of Greenwich Commons waiting for a spot to open up and once inside, a line snaked around the restaurant.

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The Washington D.C.-based eatery replaces Cosi at 129 W. Putnam Ave. It marks Connecticut’s first Cava, but the brand is growing rapidly with 40 restaurants listed on its website and another 20 described as opening soon, including two in Boston.

After scouring the state and much of Fairfield County, Cava chose Greenwich for its first location in the state, its director of real estate Brent Renner told Hearst Connecticut Media in a July interview.

“We found Greenwich aligned best with our brand so far as being an educated, active group that matches with our unique healthy offering,” he said. “We really feel food is a force for good and that offering healthy food options at an affordable price is important.”

In addition to its restaurants, Cava sells its branded dips and spreads, such as eggplant and red pepper dip, hummus and Tzatziki in grocery stores, including more than 200 Whole Foods stores.

Contact the writer at mbennett@greenwichtime.com; Twitter @Macaela_