Commentary by Anna Skinner
Spring is a time for more than cleaning; it is for freshening and preparing our bodies for summer and all those poolside afternoons, so what better way to liven up your lunch with a spring salad? I stopped at local restaurants around Hamilton Co. to try the best combinations that would boost me up for the change of season.
GORGONZOLA FRUIT SALAD: $8, serves 1
Donatello’s Italian Restaurant, 9 W Main St., Carmel, had the perfect sweet and savory combo with the pairing of cheese, fresh fruits and lettuce. This was one of those rare combinations where something tasted delicious and was also healthy for you. There was a pop of color with granny smith apples, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries and other fruits, as well as a complimentary tang from the onion and lettuce counterparts. The sweet raspberry dressing finished this salad beautifully.
FRISÉE SALAD: $9, serves 1
The Local, 14655 Gray Rd., Westfield, had a very light, refreshing option for a spring salad choice. Goat cheese and macerated strawberries provide a smooth, sweet pair to the walnuts and the frizzy, slight bitterness of the frisée lettuce leaves. The tarragon vinaigrette is made in house and the subtle dressing didn’t pose any sogginess of oversaturation. The tastes mingled together quite finely and did not provide any overly aggressive flavors.
ANTIPASTO SALAD: Small, serves 1: $5.75 Large, serves 2-3: $9.25
When people filter into Bazbeaux, 111 W Main St., Carmel, they are usually looking for pizza and not salad. Yet I decided to try the antipasto salad and was not disappointed. This salad is different than your typical salad as there are more meats, cheese and unique vegetables than lettuce. It has a tangy, zestful flavor. Although customers can pick their dressing, I chose the balsamic vinaigrette because it paired wonderfully with the vinaigrette shrimp, salami, prosciutto, pepperoni, artichoke hearts, hearts of palm and onions.