Lower Grenville is the new home of Crisp Salad company. The area once known as a popular party scene has now transformed into a more diverse district focusing on things such as family, food, and health.
The atmosphere inside the restaurant can perfectly be described as if Chipotle and Ghengis Grill had a baby. Now remember this is a judge free zone, so don’t think we are crazy for saying this, but first let us explain. Christa says that it is like Chipotle because of how it is built and how spacious it is inside. The atmosphere, music, and choice of product use also reminds her of having a Chipotle like vibe. I think that it reminds me of Ghengis Grill because there is more of a personal touch by preparing the salad for you and making it easier for you to eat. Although you tell them what you want and they get the items for you, they place it in a large bowl for you, cut up the greens, mix your ingredients together, as well as stir in the dressing of your choice. This to me makes them stand out. It really does put a personal touch on the experience as a whole.
There are endless options of organic and local products to choose from to create your own personal salad. They also have artisan bread from a local bakery and various mouthwatering soups to choose from. One fun fact about them is that all of their dressings except the Spicy Thai Peanut Dressing.They also have some fresh mini cupcakes from a local bakery. We love how supportive they are of other local business around them! For me, it was a bit overwhelming because I literally wanted to put everything in my salad. 🙂 We went through the line and ordered our desired salads.
The salads were soooo fresh and that dressing (white balsamic vinaigrette) was to die for!!!
I had the custom salad which included grilled spicy chicken, kale, arugula, sun-dried tomatoes, banana peppers, red onions and white balsamic vinaigrette.
Christa had the Crisp Caprese which is their take on the popular Italian dish and it is one of their seasonal salads.The salad included buffalo mozzarella,grape tomatoes and romaine lettuce. She opted for the white balsamic vinaigrette instead of the classic balsamic vinaigrette. She said the salad was very refreshing,the buffalo mozzarella was her favorite though. Christa also got a piece of their artisan bread which was not warm but it was good. The dublin black cherry soda was also good,she rarely drinks soda but that was not overpowering at all.
Altogether it was a great experience,you could really tell the locals have responded well to Crisp. As we sat and ate the place continued to fill up for the dinner rush which is always a good sign. We enjoyed our salads and the lovely atmosphere that Crisp provided and will make another trip in the future.
Before visiting here, we wanted to get the inside scoop on how Crisp got its start on the scene. We had the opportunity to chat with owner Blaine Duhe. Check out our interview below!
Christa: So tell me about yourself. Like what’s your name, etc…
Blaine: My name is Blaine Duhe. I am the owner and the manger of Crisp Salad Company. So..I run the ship here.
Christa: What made you want to start the business? Especially like a salad restaurant.
Blaine: I have always wanted to open my own restaurant and really within the last few years, my personal eating habits have really transitioned from a lot of “I don’t care” to a lot more of responsible eating. And eating local foods as much as I can and stuff like that. When you put those two thing together I wanted to open a restaurant forever and my eating habits were evolving to something that I think a lot of other people are. i think a lot of other people are trying to eat healthier, eat local when they can and things like that so, those two elements really came together and that’s how we ended up hatching the idea for Crisp.
Christa: So when y’all opened, how did the city respond to the restaurant?
Blaine: Well I think in a more micro level, the neighborhood responded to us very well. So we opened right at the very beginning of December, which isn’t necessarily “salad weather.” You know, people are wanting a big bowl of chili, or they want to get some real hearty food. But even still, we had a lot of support from the neighborhood. A lot of people from the Lakewood and M-steets area can walk to get lunch here. Even on days outside when it would be frozen, we would still be open and we would be having people walk in for lunch or dinner, things like that. For a while there, we were slow enough in business and I was here so much that I started to learn lot of people’s names. So we would have the majority of our lunch come in and it would be like, “Hey Tim! Hey Bob! What’s going on?” I think they really appreciated that. Even now, we have gotten a lot busier, and our lines are a little bit longer, so it takes a little while longer to get through our lines now. We hear a lot like, “I love that you guys are doing great! I gotta wait longer now, but I love that you will have so much more business now.” So…it’s a great place to be at this location and has been a really positive experience for us.
Christa: Do you all use local products?
Blaine: Yeah whenever we can. The challenge with local organic foods is that it is really pricey to do that sort of stuff. So it is hard to do 100% local or a 100% organic, so we just try to be responsible about it without having our average meal ticket be like $30. So we want to do local when we can and organic when we can. We have done a few things to build in some permanent options. Like our Kambucha is from Ft. Worth. The bread that we use is from Village Baking Company which is right up the street. Our cupcakes are from a local Dallas baker. Even our sodas, we chose Dublin sodas, which are obviously made from Texas. Because we wanted to include more local things, plus we just love the taste of real sugar sodas. Things like that help us to provide more local product. And then produce as well, we try to do local produce when we can, and when they are in season. We did a lot of Texas grapefruit over the winter, and we are always looking to add ingredients like that.
Christa: Are you thinking about expansion for your company?
Blaine: Definitely! We are looking all over Dallas and suburbs. So really the Dallas metro area, we are looking at places we think will really respond well to what we have done. We see Dallas as a progressive food city, and we look at the north east and in California where people have been eating really healthy for years now, and Dallas especially is starting to catch on to that trend. So, we know that we have a good concept for what people are wanting to eat, and now we just need to find the pockets within Dallas that have really latched on to what we are doing.
We are also on Instagram! Follow us @theeatsblog