salad, three ways

It feels like everyday I’m discovering something new about downtown. I am absolutely loving being part of the workforce down here. And I’m not gonna lie – it’s even better with weather days like today. But I can’t seem to get past going to the same lunch spots. Not that I’m complaining – I am intentionally going to this trio over and over as I’m hooked on their salads.

Greenhouse. This is hands-down the best Caesar salad in all of Cleveland. Probably beyond, too. I’m beyond hooked. In one week, I think I ordered it three times. Large beds of grilled romaine, tons of capers, parmesan, shallots, garlic, herbed croutons and the most perfect dressing – and at the right amount, too. Lunch will never be the same if it comes off the menu.

Saigon. I’m told there are lots of tasty things at this popular Vietnamese restaurant, but I wouldn’t know. I can’t get past the shrimp cabbage salad. A mound of shredded cabbage (don’t worry – you will finish), sliced shrimp, peanuts, cilantro, shaved carrots and onions in a lightly sweet dressing. It’s filling, refreshing, healthy and incredibly flavorful.

Pura Vida. I’m a sucker for a spinach salad and this one is up there. Warm spinach, of course, topped with a fried local egg. But the star here is the bacon – thick slices of crispy bacon mixed in with pickled onions and rye toast topped with balsamic and olive oil. Perfect – every time.

I am fibbing just a bit… of course I have tried other places for lunch. I now get what all the fuss is about  Vincenza’s Pizza (get the thin crust), and Tea House Noddles can whip up something tasty in a pinch. And on a cold day, I crave the tomato bread soup at Chinato (no offense – I’m ok not having you again until the fall!). But there’s just something about these three that has me hungry for lunch by 9 a.m.

Where are your go-to downtown lunch spots?

 

3 Comments

  1. poiseinparma
    Posted March 21, 2012 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

    The Market Cafe at East 9th and Chester was my favorite lunch spot downtown. It’s cafeteria style, but much nicer, much hipper than any other cafeteria I’ve have ever been to. Just has a great array of salad, soup, panini and grill options. Not too bad on the pocketbook either!

  2. JackieG
    Posted March 21, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

    Good to Go Cafe in the back of the lobby in the IMG building is totally great – always something healthy and yummy. The menu changes everyday and the owner could not be nicer.

  3. rlmthree
    Posted March 21, 2012 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    In my mayor days at the Greenhouse, that caesar was a go-to. I absolutely love the grilled romaine. These days Noodlecat is tops for me. The burger at Johnny’s Little Bar is short trolley ride away.