Venue Review: Souper Salad
The Charlotte Observer
10046-D E. Independence Blvd.
Buffets can be tricky. You have to decide whether you can eat your money's worth and gamble on whether the food will be good.
The buffet at Souper Salad was $7.24, so I figured I'd have little problem finding enough on the mid-sized salad and hot bars to justify what I paid.
Turns out I had to hunt a bit more than I would have liked, but there were some nice items, such as the vegetable beef soup and the potato bar.
Souper Salad is on East Independence Boulevard, near the back of The Crossings strip mall. One tip: After placing our order at the counter, an employee asked whether I'd like "cash back." This was the restaurant's polite attempt at helping those of us who don't carry cash, to not stiff the help.
On the Sunday evening we were there, the salad bar needed help. At the beginning of the bar, there was a half-empty bowl of romaine lettuce and a Caesar salad that had more than its fair share of dressing. There were spinach and mesclun greens. However, they were jammed into a container and thus badly bruised. The shredded carrots, celery and broccoli all looked as if they had been subjected to temperatures much too cold for them. A "tuna skroodle" pasta salad contained little tuna.
Things got better as I approached the hot bar. The vegetable beef soup was truly a treat. The tomato-based broth had soul-satisfying warmth and the chunks of potatoes and carrots and bits of beef were perfectly cooked.
I'd skip the pizza and head for the potato bar. I made a mean Southwestern baked potato using salsa and cheese from the taco bar and bacon, scallions and sour cream from the baked potato area.
For a little something sweet, there were hunks of moist gingerbread. Soft-serve ice cream lovers will adore the toppings bar with hot fudge, caramel, crushed Oreos.