Restaurant of the Week: So Fresh Salads and More

CLOSED JULY 2010

This week’s restaurant: So Fresh Salads and More, 1 N. Indian Hill Blvd., Suite 103 (at 1st), Claremont.

So Fresh looks like a franchise, as does the Pita Pit next door, but both are homegrown Claremont operations. (Update: I’m told Pita Pit really is a franchise. So Fresh is local, though.)

Pita Pit seems like a popular lunch spot, especially with the college crowd. I had a gyro there a while back and have to say it didn’t meet my expectations of a gyro. The sandwich maker — it’s like Subway or Quizno’s, where someone asks if you want each individual condiment — was ready to put all sorts of questionable items on my gyro. But that’s not really their fault. It’s not a Greek restaurant, it’s a place that sells wraps, albeit ones in pita bread rather than tortillas.

So Fresh, to pardon my own interruption, has salads, wraps and panini sandwiches. It was moderately busy at lunchtime Monday. You order at the counter and in a bit they call your name to pick up your food. I got the Garden Salad (spring mix, tomatoes, mushrooms, cucumbers, carrots, green peppers and goat cheese) with balsamic dressing, plus an iced tea, for $7.77.

There were some problems. A customer who came in after me got his salad before I did. And when my salad came, it was in a to-go container, not the for-here bowl.

The bigger problem was the amount of dressing. My salad was coated. There was probably twice as much dressing as I would have liked. I ate most of the salad but the dressing was so overpowering that I couldn’t finish. By mid-afternoon, I was not only $7.77 poorer, I was hungry again.

Maybe this experience was an anomaly, but if I go back, it will be for a panini, or I’ll ask for dressing on the side. Anyone else try this place, or the Pita Pit? I’m happy to see locally owned businesses in the Expansion and certainly wish both restaurants the best. They weren’t to my taste, though.

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  • Mike Smith

    I’ve news for you. Pita Pit is a nationwide franchise. It is not a “home grown Claremont operation.”

    [OK, thanks for the correction. -- DA]

  • calwatch

    So is that what Claremont’s Village Expansion is good for? Food for Claremont College students sick of dorm food and not willing to get in a car? Or are they attracting the kinds of people for their “two week anniversary” as one ad in another Southern California newspaper seems to proclaim?

  • Anthony

    I would not recommend going back to either place. I work in the Village Expansion and have been to both at least a couple of times each. The two times I went to So Fresh my wraps were soaked in dressing and was unable to finish them on both occasions. As for Pita Pit I have always felt their pita bread was not fresh and I was never fond of the ordering then picking out every little ingredient process. Also, both are overpriced for what you get.

    [So maybe my experiences weren't unique, which is good to know. A friend reports she had a panini at So Fresh and didn't care for it. -- DA]

  • daredevel223

    I’ve been to both places. Pita Pit is a franchise and So Fresh is a local restaurant.
    Pita Pit is nothing spectacular. It is like subway and Quiznos.

    For So Fresh I’ve got to say that they put a little too much dressing but their salads are like nothing I have ever had. If you get a garden salad it is going to be a little smaller but if you get a regular salad it is going to be better.

  • yvonne27

    Just noticed a For Lease and Closed sign outside of So Fresh. Sad to see it go, it had a healthy, varied and fast alternative, just needed to pay more attention to reviews I suppose.

    [Thanks for updating us, Yvonne. -- DA]