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TOP SALAD IN FLA

This post was originally going to be "salad bar" in Florida. Feel free to mention them in this post along with your favorite Sunshine State Salads...here's a few from Miamerry Miami!
Please be advised that this post is under the influence. Merry Christmas!

1. Joe's Takeaway Salad with your choice of fish.

2. Spicy Vietnamese Steak Salad - Big Pink
(sub mixed greens and go for a side of balsalmic vin)

3. Greek Country Salad - Taverna OPA

Chart House gets my salad bar nod.

Disclaimer: I realize there are better...much +/- better...that is exactly what I am in search of!

Give it up FLA and the rest of you touristas.

Gracias y Feliz Navidad!

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  1. Not a big salad guy but off the top of my head the Caesar @La Baguette (North Miami) and the chopped @ Rosinella (SoBe)

    1. The Maritana Grille at the Don CeSar on St. Pete Beach gets my vote. The location is beautiful. The hawaiian fish-Chef's selection is always perfect.
      http://www.doncesar.com/Dining/Marita...

      1 Reply
      1. re: kmills9408

        I think the Christmas turkey got to me...I posted this on the wrong board....so sorry everyone!

      2. The only truly memorable salads I can think of are either gone from the menu or at restaurants that are gone ->

        - salad w/ thin shavings of foie gras terrine, green beans and truffle oil vinaigrette at Petrossian (formerly in Bar Harbour)

        - warm spinach salad w/ thin slices of pink roasted duck breast, mustardy dressing, and duck liver crostini at Timo (no longer on the menu).

        (perhaps you see a pattern here!)

        - wow, this one just came back to me - years and years ago, and for only a brief period of time, there was a place on Lincoln Road called Lure. They had a fantastic variation on a caesar salad with a dressing made with a tahini base, and they tempura-fried white anchovies to put on top.

        I also like:

        - caesar salad at Bugatti in Coral Gables (nice dressing, untraditional but good additions of pine nuts and sun-dried tomatoes)

        - bibb lettuce salad w/ jalapeno ranch dressing, aged jack cheese and avocado at Michy's

        - the ltitle toss of bitter greens, fennel, cherry tomatoes, and olives, simply dressed and generously salted, that accompanies the cheese and salumi plates at Sardinia

        - papaya salad (thai spicy) at Siam Bayshore

        - spinach salad w/ warm bacon dressing, w/ sliced red onion, mushrooms, bacon and chopped egg at Capital Grille

        - pan-fried chicken salad w/ spicy pecans, buttermilk dressing at City Cellar

        - "traditional salad" w/ eggs, bacon, fat slices of tomato, big real croutons, w/ buttermilk garlic dressing at Houston's.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Frodnesor

          niiice!

          the one that brings a tear to my to this day was the Cobb Salad at a place called the Strand subsequently known as the Living Room. It was the first time I ever ate a Cobb and it has yet to be topped.

          1. re: netmover

            the Cobb salad (my salad of choice for a meal!) at Bin 18 on Biscayne Blvd. is very good. Carmelized onions, avocado, grilled chicken, tomatoes, eggs, bacon on mixed greens. Yum!

        2. Chinois Chicken Salad - Wolfgang Puck Cafe/Express at Disney (used to get at Sawgrass Mills but unfortunately his place never made it with the bargain hunting crowd that seems to prefer Legal Sea Food, Cheesecake Factory, etc.).

          The salad represents his take on the oriental and embodies the best trait a great chef can possess, that of taking the mundane/ordinary and raising it to another level much like he did with the pizza so many years ago now at Spago.

          y Prospero Ano Nuevo :)!

          1. My favorite 2 are the Cobb salad at the News Cafe on Ocean Drive in SoBe, and the 1905 salad with sauteed shrimp at the Columbia on St. Armands Circle in Sarasota.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Veggo

              I had the 1905 salad at the Columbia about a month ago. That's the one where the waiter prepares the whole thing table side, right? Good stuff, although I can live without ever having iceberg lettuce again in any dish!

              1. re: moonsea

                Ah, but the garlic...and the olives...the squeezed lemon...and all the coarsely grated swiss...and the kick from the sauteed shrimp and sopping up the butter with the cuban bread... works for me. Plus, I still get a kick out of tableside preparations done with pride.

              2. re: Veggo

                New's Cobb is usually stellar, in fact I almost included it in my top 3! Good Salad served 24/7 replete with seabreeze. New's has an array of other solid salads too. I had their mideast combo just the other day and it was as good as ever.

              3. Definitely some great recommendations here! I'm very partial to the salads that are served at the Beverly Hills Cafe on Sunset Drive in South Miami....They have an asian salad with peanut sauce that is really tasty and their yeast rolls are sinfully delicious!

                EMc

                2 Replies
                1. re: LargeLife

                  Are they still open? The Beverly Hills in Tamarac was a long time salad go to staple of mine; but they closed their doors about a month or two ago.

                  1. re: LargeLife

                    Their salads are very good like you say and I can vouch for the Chef's.

                  2. Christy's in the Gables used to be the place for power lunches of aged beef and their classic Caesar Salad (tossed table side). I haven't been in quite a while (guess too many other steakhouses now a days or less calories to go around) but would imagine that their caeser still holds up well.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: eatnbmerry

                      The Market Cobb Salad at The Goblyn Market in Mount Dora Mixed greens, Black olives, Bleu cheese, Bacon, Eggs, Tomatoes, Artichoke hearts,truffles and onions served with a garlic parmessan ranch dressing!

                    2. This one goes out to Frodnesor:

                      Ensalada Rusa at Graziano's: A refreshing mayo based potato salad with peas and carrots.

                      1. Primo in Orlando at the Marriott Grande Lakes has exceptional salads. Much of the produce is grown organically in hotel gardens. The beet salad is exceptionally special.

                        1. The grilled vegetable salad at Julio's in NMB is excellent. And, I second the vote for Bugatti's Ceaser, it's very good, albeit a bit salty.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: janie

                            Good one! Julio's is a salad mecca. It's ultra healthy stuff over there.

                            I had a great House Salad with Rosemary Chicken at Miami Juice (Sunny Isles)yesterday. They too are a salad emporium and I look forward to trying other offerings there.

                          2. I recommend the Cuban chopped salad (called the "1905 salad") at the Columbia in Tampa or at one of its other five locations: garlic, worcestershire sauce (I think), grated parmesan or romano cheese, salty ham, julienned Swiss cheese, chopped green olives with pimento, small cubes of tomato (again, I think), chopped iceberg lettuce, and a vinegar and oil dressing that may contain some mustard to create a relatively stable emulsion. I hope that I have not left out any ingredients.

                            I recommend the straight ham version. If you order the salad with shrimp or another meat or seafood ingredient, they withhold the ham, and the saltyness/smokiness of the ham makes this dish.

                            The Valencia Restaurant on Kennedy Avenue in Tampa also makes a version of this salad which can be superb. However, what you get seems to vary, depending on which chef is making it. About six months ago, I had one come out as a composed salad, instead of everything being mixed together. Also, the Valencia uses a very different dressing than the Columbia. While the Columbia's is vinegar-based, the Valencia's is creamy but delicious.

                            Also, despite the fact that Applebee's is a chain, generally devoted to making food bland, I think well of the Santa Fe (chicken) salad at Applebee's.

                            The Alessi Restaurant on Dale Mabry in Tampa has some very interesting and unusual salads, as well.

                            Let me also lament the passing of the Miramar Restaurant at the Quay in Sarasota. Their version of a chopped Cuban salad was the best I've ever had. Alas, the Miramar closed maybe ten years ago. I have recently read a referrence on these boards to a Miramar Restaurant in Tampa, but I doubt it is affiliated with the Sarasota, now deceased, restaurant. Does anyone know for sure?

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: gfr1111

                              Hello,

                              How very nice to see a comment on our restaurant from the past - "Miramar at the Quay". We owned the Miramar for 12 years and that salad was created by our chef (Paco) from Spain. It is truly a delicious salad!

                              We have no affiliation with any other restaurants. My mother in law lives in Tampa so we'll have to ask her about the other Miramar.

                              Thanks so much for mentioning and remembering us!

                            2. I got a secret salad success story. Greek with Grilled Grouper at Joe's Takeaway. Only 11 dollars! Get the Grilled as opposed to the blackened or fried. Have them put it in a seperate dish. The Greek is made with field greens, fluffy feta, chopped beefsteak tomatoes, red onions, cukes and pitted black olives. Get a packet or two of Grey Poupon from the utensil bar, squirt one into the side of Balsamic Vin and shake it like a Poloroid Picture! Salad first, followed by a nice hunk of REAL Grilled Grouper. I like to broil it until it bubbles for fresh off the grill taste. They put a little greenery sauce/spice on it which is devine! It's a two course meal!!! You can add fish to any salad for just 3 bux...where else but at Joe's? Who said it was expensive at this high priced eatery?

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: netmover

                                Thanks Net! Who knew!

                                It almost quals for your budget post. Sounds like a super lunch option. Do you know what other fish besides grouper option?

                              2. The salads at Berries in Coconut Grove are quite good. The Carpaccio de Manzo at Rosinella (Lincoln Road and on Miami Ave near Brickell) is paper thin slices of raw beef over fresh crispy romaine lettuce covered with shaved parmesan... a bargain at 6.95.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: karmalaw

                                  $6.95 Lincoln Road anything sounds like a definite bargain!