Lunch Pick

WEEKLY LUNCH PICK: Roast ‘N Brew offers fine mix-and-match salads in a construction zone

Mix it up: Pick up to three salads to take out at the Glebe's Roast 'N Brew

By Victoria Spencer

It’s tough times for the businesses in the Glebe, what with construction going on 24-7 the whole strip looks like a dustbowl. And yet on a recent trip to Britton’s magazine shop (a girl’s got to get her Vogue September issue!) I noticed that the patio at Roast ‘N Brew was actually quite lively. Behind the construction fencing, patrons were sipping iced coffees and enjoying lunch while watching the pedestrian/traffic dance-around. And so I thought I’d stop by to see what was compelling them to make the trip out.

Easy. It’s the salads. They do panini here, too, and coffee — obviously — but the Glebe Roast ‘N Brew seems to be drawing the chicks-who-love-salad crowd. And no wonder. They have a fine deal going here. Each day, they make up six or seven fresh salads. A few of the really popular choices — the sesame noodle salad and the cheesy tortellini, for example — seem to be on the menu most days. But other salads come and go so there’s always something new to try. And the fun part is that you can choose up to three, so mixing and matching is the way to go. Eat in or to-go. A “box of salad” comes in two sizes: a small container (good for one) or a large (for the hungry construction worker or for the lady who lunches to share with her friend).

I’m feeling eclectic today so I choose one summery option (a light and lemony cracked wheat salad with zucchini, mushroom, and corn); one moving-into-fall option (a chewy wild rice, Granny Smith apple, cranberry, and raisin concoction); and a Roast ‘N Brew staple (the aforementioned cheesy tortellini with red peppers). All in all, it makes a nice change from the usual sandwich.

It’s not food to change the world, but it is fresh and tasty. Especially if, like me, you’re too lazy to move much beyond a basic couscous salad in your home kitchen. Oh, and the iced coffee is nice, too.

Cost: $4.99 (perfect for a light lunch) or $6.99 (a jumbo container of salad, fit for the super-hungry luncher or for sharing with a friend)

Open daily. Roast ‘N Brew Coffee Co., 843 Bank St. (Bank and Fifth), 613-695-5220, www.roastnbrew.com

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