It’s often said that it’s not easy being green. Eating green, especially in a state that loves its food deep-fried, can be even harder. However, AY About You is hunting down the best spots for eating green as part of this month’s Salad Bucket List.
This week, AY Publisher Heather Baker and KARK host DJ Williams popped over to local favorite Cheers in the Heights. Known for a wide range of culinary options, Cheers in the Heights serves up some of the best salads in the area – as well as at its sister locations: Cheers in Maumelle, Cheers in Fayetteville and Samantha’s Tap Room.
“We’re here in the Heights at Cheers. This is what we’re going to do – we’re going to hop inside because it’s a little hot out here even though I’ve got my collar popped up. We’re about to see what’s on the menu. I’ve heard it’s good,” Williams says.
Once inside, Cheers in the Heights owner Chris Tanner gets to work on a massive, mouth-watering spread for Baker and Williams. Tanner isn’t content with just sending out a few salads – he’s loading this pair up with a selection of some of the most popular salads that Cheers in the Heights offers as well as some unique options.
He prepares an Asian Shrimp Salad, which has Napa cabbage, shaved carrots, avocado, pomegranate edamame, halo oranges, fresh sweet peppers, purple onion with grilled shrimp and is served with a ginger vinaigrette. Tanner also serves up the “number one salad” at his restaurants: the Chopped Salmon Salad. This salad features arugula, hardwood smoked salmon, dried cranberries, feta cheese, sunflower seeds, dried sweet corn and couscous with pesto buttermilk dressing.
Baker and Williams also get to try the salmon filet salad and an heirloom tomato salad with bacon. “During the summer time, these tomatoes are perfection,” Tanner says.
When the food arrives at the table, Baker and Williams pause before digging in to admire the green goodness. “Probably for the first time in a long time, I’m just overwhelmed with the smell of the food. I’m starting to salivate. It’s been awhile,” Williams says.
“This is the plethora of goodness. I want to eat everything on this table. This is one of my favorite salads ever – it’s the chopped salmon salad,” Baker says.
Both Baker and Williams are struck by the quality of ingredients featured in the salads. “I pay attention to the ingredients and how fresh they are. The avocados are unbelievable. The edamame, the cranberries – just like she said – the sliced carrots. They didn’t just pop this out of a freezer a couple of minutes ago. People here took time to make sure that it tastes the way it should taste,” Williams says.
At the end of the meal, Baker says the food was “amazing.” Williams even says that, of all the bucket lists, that “it’s been one of my favorite weeks so far.”
You’ll have to tune in next week to see where Baker and Williams go for the next Salad Bucket List.