Most of the above mentioned items will never make a comeback, and some of you may say that this is for the best, but why can't the salad bar come out of retirement? That is what I would like to know. I hear the Bay City Rollers are doing it, and I'm not sure that is ever going to be a good idea, but large selections fresh healthy food is always a good thing. Right?
Yes, there are some remnants of the good old salad bar days around. I can think of the Market Buffet and the Mandarin, and I'm sure you can tell me where to find a few more in the area. Just this week, I tried out something new in my own neighbourhood that makes me feel hopeful for the future of salad as a food item that can be both good for you and good to your taste buds.
Have you heard of the AvocoBar? It sounds a bit like a happening night club, but it's actually a neat little lunch spot on the edge of my Tall Trees neighbourhood, mere steps away from the Bayfield St. strip, on Cundles Rd. E. In a small plaza that includes a beauty school and a clinic, a convenience store recently vacated and the AvocoBar moved into the empty corner shop. A sandwich board outside proclaims that healthy fast food is sold within.
My daughter and I spent a rather long morning in the Drive Test office on Friday, which I'm sure is no surprise to anyone. She got her G1 license (hooray!) and, by the end of that excruciating government process, we were both very hungry, and short on time.
"Have you been in the AvocoBar yet?" she casually asks.
"No. but let's go there right now." I reply. Well played, Miss Margaret, well played.
Step 1: Pick your base, which is a selection of lettuces or greens. Done. Step 2 Choose up to 4 toppings from a huge selection. Step 3. Pick one of 20 house made dressings. The combinations are absolutely endless, when you think about it.
Margaret ordered a beet salad with chicken. What a cool system they have for mixing the salads. Each salad is mixed inside a bag and shaken to mix, then popped into a cute little cardboard container reminiscent of a gift box. They write your name on it a la Starbucks and off you go. If you are thirsty, there are beautiful drink dispensers bubbling away with ice cold water infused with things like lemon, mint and cucumber.
This is definitely guilt free fast food. There are fruit salads available too, and vegan chili as well as butternut squash soup, things that I must try. How nice that it is a short walk from my house. Welcome to the neighbourhood, AvocoBar. I think we are going to get along very well.