HOME > Chowhound > Chains >
Apr 13, 2007 05:24 PM

Thoughts on 'Sweet Tomatoes'

I've recently visited my parents twice in Florida and each time we went to 'Tomatoe's', once for lunch and once for dinner. Have to say I loved it. The place was spotlessly clean, the workers were all friendly and accomodating. The hot foods were tasty and filling, the salad options plentiful and the soups very good to excellent. I'm wondering what others think of Tomatoe's.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. If you're thinking of Sweet Tomatoes, I think it's dreadful. The one in The Woodlands, Texas is woefully understaffed and the dining room is always filled with dirty tables that never get cleaned. The prepared salads at the front of the line are usually limp and underdressed. The rest of the salad bar is fresh enough, but the soups - my GOD, the salt. The pastas are cold and bland. But my biggest complaint is that the building itself is far too small for all the various lines and the hordes of people packing in there. Someone is always running into someone else. In my case, on my last visit I left reeking of the shrimp bisque that had been spilled all over my shirt by someone who wasn't looking (ran head first right into me). Maybe your location is different - I would hope so - but I'm not giving Sweet Tomatoes another try for a while.

    2 Replies
    1. re: jim1126

      Sounds dreadful. Luckily (for me) I didn't run into any of those problems on either of my visits. The salads were all fresh and crisp, the soups were hot. The location I was at (Winter Park, FL. maybe?) was busy but not overly so and the tables seemed to be bussed as soon as they were empty.

      1. re: Drew E

        My father goes to one in Palm Beach Co. all the time. I haven't been to it, but he gives it the sames thumbs up as you. I trust his judegement too. I wonder why they haven't brought one up to the Northern NY, NJ suburbs? I think they would do very well.

    2. I have never had a bad experience at the one here in Fort Myers. It is always packed, but they have no problem keeping it clean and the selection stocked. I appreciate the fact that they always have several low-fat, low-sodium, and vegetarian items available. Their website has comprehensive nutrition info for every dish served so it makes it easy to stop there for a quick uncomplicated lunch that you don't have to feel guilty about later. I especially have a thang for the lowfat cornbread.

      1. we have several in the Tampa area, and I have always had a good experience there, the salads tend to be made regularly enough to keep fresh. there is always one I find really interesting, I agree with jim about the pastas though, they are generally a waste of time in my opinion, over cooked, bland and uninspired, I generally skip them, I do usually find a soup I like though. I love the muffins, particularly the bran muffins.

        1 Reply
        1. re: willdupre

          Same here in NC. The restaurant is always clean and the staff is extremely attentive. Boy, are the pastas ever bad, though! The soups are pretty good and the chicken noodle comes very close to being a traditional Southern chicken and dumplings. A little too thin to be the real thing but it tastes great. The Senate bean soup is worth the second trip back, too. I just hate that they downsized the soup bowls recently. I find that I always overeat there too much to consider the restaurant healthy, though.

        2. Sweet Tomatoes - Glenview, IL - is fine. However, I initially went there because DH and I are on WW. However, we found the soups, baked potato bar, and desserts too tempting. We ate more junk than salad. I have always had good service at that one. and it was clean, too. Hard to do for a 100% buffet restaurant

          1. I've always thought they have done a good to very good job of providing a wide variety of foods served up well (known as Souplantation in California). My complaints are:

            None of the potato salads are worth a damn

            They don't have my favorite Mandarin Krab salad anymore (or at least not when I am there)

            No non-screaming-children section

            And I am with those who are unhappy about the downsized soupbowls. I happen to like doctoring my soups with the fixins from the baked potato bar (the pico de gallo is excellent, and perks up anything it's added to). The smaller bowls make it difficult to get the right soup-to-fixins ratio.

            1 Reply
            1. re: GroovinGourmet

              GroovinGourmet...me too! Yesterday Sweet Tomatoes featured their Rosemary Potato soup. I tried to add bacon, cheese, spring onion and sourcream to make it my version of a baked potato soup....unfortunately w/ the small bowls...it was 'Overflow' City!
              But very Yummy!!