I love burgers. And tacos. And barbecue. And fine dining. But that doesn’t mean I don’t find time for a great salad. In fact, it is my love for those others that makes the love of salads mandatory. This is the first in a series called Salad Days, in which I try and find great salads around town. Know of one I should try? Drop me a line at modam@statesman.com.

Southwestern salad at Tiny Boxwoods ($16)

What you’re going to love about this salad: If you’re from Texas, the Southwestern salad will hit you in your nostalgic pleasure centers. It will likely remind you of some of the first “fancy” salads you had at restaurants as an adolescent. All of the hallmarks of a classic Southwestern are there: sweetness of of corn, the mellow taste of black beans, fatty avocado and the crunch of tortilla chips.

Quibbles: The white flowers, the white-washed wooden walls, the distressed wooden floors, the white luxury SUVs parked out front … this Houston import is very River Oaks-meets-Hamptons-meets-Pemberton Heights. I couldn’t tell if the namesake boxwoods were meant more to keep diners enclosed or keep the rest of the world out. The woman next to me was going on about “tasteful development” in Tarrytown as some mothers were letting their kids tromp around the postage stamp lawn dotted with signs asking people to stay off the grass. So, yeah, it’s a lot. As for the salad, the greens suffered from an abundance of dressing, leaving the leaves saggy, though the dry grilled chicken tossed on top benefited from the moisture. It was … fine? To make things better, the friendly woman working the counter gave me a free (and delicious) buttery chocolate chip cookie when I tried to buy one to go. The staff is very polite and prompt, which may well be a result of meeting the expectations of the clientele.

Tiny Boxwoods. 503 W. 35th St. 512-220-0698, tinyboxwoods.com

MORE SALAD DAYS


Farro salad with grilled shrimp at Salt & Time
Kale and salmon salad at Épicerie Cafe & Grocery