Simply Delicious serves up fresh, local eats
April 25, 2012 at 3:02 p.m.
Updated April 24, 2012 at 11:25 p.m.
If you've been reading my Chomp! columns, you may be pleased to know this one does not include any food with the words "chili" or "cheese" in the name. There might have been some slices of cheese involved, but nowhere near the same amounts as with the usual culprits that make me feel like a glutton.
After surviving what may have been my fourth serving of chili-cheese paraphernalia last week, I vowed to undergo a "salad week," which meant eating nothing but salad for lunch. And surprisingly enough, I was able to keep to my word - for the most part. I am human after all, and I set the rules myself, so I can bend them just a tad, can't I?
Believe me, I didn't plan to bend the rules, but if you ask Luke, I have a horrible tendency to panic at the last minute when we're placing our order and change my mind about what I am going to eat.
We met at his office downtown and meandered over to Simply Delicious, where the former downtown favorite Longleaf Coffee Co. once brewed the newsroom's favorite caffeinated drinks. They still offer a variety of coffee drinks and teas and added a slew healthy items made with locally purchased and seasonal ingredients and so it fit right in to salad week.
This is how it went down in my head when we reached the counter at the new Simply Delicious:
A salad would be perfect. It is still salad week, remember? ... Nice, they have a farmer's salad. That sounds good. It has goat cheese - Yarm! - local honey-roasted pecans, apples or cranberries - Fancy! - and grilled chicken - Sweet, meat!
I looked up at Luke and told him, "I think I am going to go with the farmer's salad. What about you?"
He looked away from his menu and told me he decided on the ham sandwich.
He always gets sandwiches. Oh, but a sammy sounds good, too. Oh, they have a grown-up grilled cheese. Fun! I love-a gouda.
Then he stepped up the counter and ordered his ham sandwich without any hesitation.
Ahhhhh! No! I'm not ready. They have a soup and salad deal. And today, it's chicken and bean orzo soup. Or a half sandwich and soup gig. Oiy!
"Anything else?" The guy behind the counter asked looking at me patiently.
"Me?" I asked scrambling for a decision. Play it cool. Cool as a cucumber. "Yeah, can I get the turkey avocado sandwich? And a coffee, please?"
Luke ordered an iced-tea and then looked at me from behind his plastic framed glasses with the same look he always gives me when I change my mind.
"I know, I know," I said out loud. "I can always come back for the salad." Unbeknownst to him, I was justifying my actions to myself.
Bah! The farmer's salad sounded so good. Mmmm... Or the spinach salad. I love spinach salad.
We sat at one of the small tables near the doorway and read one of the abandoned newspapers on a table nearby.
After a short while, out came two sandwiches, but no salad with its goat cheese, pecans and chicken. But all was not lost. The sandwiches were piled high with fixings and the company was great.
Luke's sammy was stuffed with thick-sliced ham and there was enough turkey for me to make another sandwich. The tomatoes were juicy and my lettuce crisp and crunchy. The bacon served as a nice contrast to the soft bread, which is baked in-house before service.
I walked away feeling like I may have missed out on a delicious salad, but just because salad week has ended, doesn't mean I can't come back for a salad whenever I feel like it.
Jessica Rodrigo is a horrible decision-maker when it comes to hunger. Show her some guidance on where to eat. Drop her a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @eatseatseats.