It's nearing the season of 80-degree weather, flip-flops, pro kadima, bathing suits, and for some an attempt to eat a bit healthier. Markets and restaurants have many salads on their menus, many made with local produce that make great meals for take-out or dining out.
New this year is Krista's Gourmet Café in Vineyard Haven (formerly Vineyard Gourmet), which offers a make-your-own salad bar and additional pre-made salads such as broccoli salad and seven types of chicken salad.
At some restaurants, chefs work hard to come up with unique and healthy recipes. Specialty salads include L'étoile's Salad of Herbed Mixed Greens with artichoke hearts, chevre, French olives, dried cranberries and honey-toasted almonds with a sherry-black truffle vinaigrette; The Newes's Spinach and Beet salad with fresh spinach, beets, goat cheese and toasted walnuts with balsamic dressing; David Ryan's Christiantown salad with local greens, goat cheese, toasted pine nuts, and red wine poached figs; O-Sun's tomato avocado salad; and Atria's Local Field Greens with Beets, Beets, and Beets with haricot verts, goat cheese, shaved red onions, and balsamic vinaigrette.
Seafood salad dishes include Atlantic's Lobster Arugula Salad with baby arugula, baby spinach, walnuts, cranberries, and local sautéed lobster; Slice of Life's Asian Salmon Salad with mixed greens, pan seared salmon, green beans, scallions, potato crisps, shiitake mushrooms, with a ginger soy vinaigrette; and Alchemy's Jonah Crab and Asparagus Salad.
Meat-lovers may like The Wharf's Grilled Flank Steak Salad with cherry tomatoes, caramelized red onions, blue cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette over mixed greens; Blue Canoe's Pulled Chicken Salad with mixed greens, pulled free range chicken, crispy wontons, corn, roasted red peppers, cilantro, and citrus-honey tahini dressing; Espresso Love's Grilled Steak Salad with 6 oz. flank steak over mixed greens, gorgonzola, tomatoes, toasted walnuts, and balsamic dressing; Water Street's Spinach Salad with chicken, roasted mushrooms, soft-boiled egg with a sherry vinaigrette; and Zephrus' Frisée and Escarole with smoked bacon, poached egg, with a coarse Dijon vinaigrette.