Photo by Lee Chastain.

I’m not sure why I assumed Snappy Salads (6115 Camp Bowie Blvd., Ste 120, 817-616-6016) was a ladies-who-lunch spot. After all, the Dallas-based chain’s marketing slogan is “So good, even guys like our salads.” But, for some no doubt terribly sexist reason, I imagined the place was a grownup dollhouse with a few wingback chairs covered in embroidered lace. And doilies. Man, was I prepared for some doilies.

To further taint my impression, there were a few women clad in yoga pants congregated outside the three-month-old eatery. The moment I walked into the place’s Ridglea-area strip mall storefront, my preconceived notions were shattered like bone China hitting the Camp Bowie bricks.

In a rare moment of truth in advertising, there were dudes everywhere. Don’t get the wrong impression –– the sun-washed dining room was mostly filled with women, but only a few were the types who bring their small children and set up camp for a few hours. Snappy’s is not that kind of party.

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Enough about what the place isn’t. On my recent weekday visit, the line at the salad bar looked like that of an amusement park roller coaster. The long wooden communal tables were cluttered with the dirty dishes of recently departed diners. It’s not like there wasn’t an army of people trying to keep up with the volume. There was. But the streaming mass of humanity was unrelenting. In the biz, being super busy like that is referred to as being “in the weeds.” Snappy’s was in the forest that day.

Still, my guest and I got through the line at a reasonable clip, although the poor people making our food were slowed by the fact that they had to keep referring to the menu to read the ingredients.

I, like so many schlubs this time of year, have decided to stop being fat and killing myself with carbs and sugar. Almost everything on the menu ranged from very to somewhat healthy to not great for you but not nearly as bad as covering Krispy Kreme donuts in ice cream and eating it out of a bacon-weaved bowl.

The menu is entry-level gourmand. The seafood on my crab cake salad ($18.48 for a large size) was beautifully seared and buttery tasting and topped with a dollop of a peppery aioli called Firecracker Sauce. The cakes sat on a generously portioned bed of red leaf lettuce with corn, roasted red peppers, green onions, and a zesty, light lemon vinaigrette. It wasn’t exactly rabbit food, but it was delicious. I actually had to pack some of it to take with me.

My guest’s ridiculously named Bam Bam salad ($9.70), a mix of baby spinach, arugula, red cabbage, slithers of pulled chicken, quinoa, red onion, dried cherries, and chopped almonds tossed in a sweet parsley dressing, was a masterpiece of balanced flavors. Every component stood out, but nothing clashed. The cherries and the dressing made the dish a little sweet but not cloying. My guest praised the salad as the best he’s ever had.

A few more visits to Snappy’s and a couple of squat-thrusts, and I’ll be back in tip-top shape. I just hope I look good in yoga pants.


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