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Fresh is best on Main Street

Verdura brings salad bars to Mt. Pleasant.

The roasted cauliflower and lemon salami salad from Verdura.

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Abby Wiseman / Metro Order this photo

The roasted cauliflower and lemon salami salad from Verdura.

You’re hungry, traffic is bad and holding off for dinner is not an option.

You look around and all there is are fast(ish) food joints, grocery stores and cafés. You don’t want a scone, you want something tasty, hearty and good for you, and your hangry brain is starting to panic. Verdura is the place for people looking for that quick healthy fix.

Located at 2509 Main St., Verdura is a ready-to-order salad bar and grab-and-go snack bar. Owner, Trevor Griffin worked for Whole Foods for many years before making the leap into the restaurant world. His concept for Verdura is tasty salads with quality ingredients.

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I tried the pear and goat cheese sachette ($11) salad and the roasted cauliflower and lemon salami ($11). The stand out to was the Cauliflower Salami, but it was neck and neck.

Served with romaine, cauliflower, Oyama lemon salami, vine ripened tomato, seasonal beets, buffalo mozzarella, lemon miso vinaigrette.

The rich salami paired with fresh tomatoes cut through the fat and made this a very balanced dish, pulled together with the earthy beets, roasted cauliflower and miso vinaigrette. The cauliflower could have been slightly more roasted to add extra flavour, but my favourite part was the buffalo mozzarella. This soft unripened mozzarella has the consistency of bocconcini, but is far more flavourful. I love it.

The pear and goat cheese sachette salad was a unique salad. I wasn’t sure what “sachettes” would translate to, but essentially it was goat cheese stuffed ravioli in the shape of a wonton served cold in a spinach salad. They added a lot of substance to an otherwise leafy salad.

The yellow beets are a staple pairing with goat cheese, but I loved the walnuts and honey crisp apple. I did not really taste too much pear in the salad, but it was still fantastic without it. As an added surprise there was a layer of lemon ricotta at the bottom, so scoop deep if you choose this salad.

I swilled all this down with a glass of ginger kombucha from Oddity Kombucha served fresh on tap. For those who need a faster meal, there’s a quick bar where you can grab salads, granola and drinks.

I’ve seen health-focused lunch spots like this open downtown, but many haven’t created the caliber of menu that Verdura salads is offering. I recommend checking it out when that hanger is calling your name.

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