This Salad’s Like a Party

Whenever I think of a good salad, I remember this moment from The Hills.

salad like a party

Audrina was not amused with her date.

not amused

Poor guy. It’s never good when your salad is more exciting than your company.

Salads get a bad rap for being boring, but if you find the right recipe, you’re sure to have a colorful party. I headed over to the mecca of salad restaurants for lunch this afternoon at Basil restaurant in Charlottesville to do some work.

Basil Salad

My main dish was off the menu and just as the the owner described, “a different taste for every bite.” It was was made of mixed greens, onions, Roma tomatoes, roasted red peppers, cucumbers, fried pita chips, feta, dates, and pistachios, and tossed in a refreshing sumac, lemon and extra virgin olive oil vinaigrette.

Basil salad ingredients

Basil restaurant bar

I couldn’t get enough delicately sweet dates.

dates in salad


Aside from their multi-layered salads, Basil is also known for their savory hummus.

hummus at basil

The garbanzo beans are soaked overnight, boiled, and combined with lemon, tahini and a hot water mixture to form the right consistency. It’s not overpowering with garlic, rather it owns a hearty and creamy nut flavor, perfect to pair with fresh baked bread.

Basil hummus

Speaking of baked goods, you know I saved room for dessert…

Basil cake

The butterscotch banana rum cake stole the show. Three layers of creamy banana cake moistened with rum, studded with walnuts, filled and iced with butterscotch cream and topped with the most decadent sweet butterscotch miroir.

Desserts at basil

Ricotta cheese nestled in honey joined the cake on the side.

butterscotch banana rum cake

So much craft and precision go into every dish here. The best thing about Basil is the health factor. One of the waitresses lost 10 pounds since she started working there because of the clean food.

If you’re in the Charlottesville area, grab a party (or order one upon arrival) and head in for a tasty feast. You won’t regret it.

Basil Mediterranean


What’s your favorite Mediterranean dish?

9 thoughts on “This Salad’s Like a Party

  1. says:

    I want that salad now-best looking thing I have seen in a long time-can we please go there the next time I am in C’ville? It had everything I love! Those desserts were pretty awesome looking too.

  2. ranchcookie says:

    Wow that whole meal looked great! Hope I get to try it some day!

  3. Brittany says:

    Oh man, a day with a good meal like this is one of the best days.

  4. Nicole says:

    I’m so very hungry now. Ha, ha! These all look so amazing!!

  5. I loove dates in salads!

  6. moderngirlnutrition says:

    What?! Dates and pistachios and feta and that dressing?! Oh my gosh I need to recreate that 🙂 Hehe love your introduction to this post

  7. That salad….I’m in love. Dates are a secret salad weapon, I’ll tell ya. I love that you included that snippet about the waitress losing 10 pounds…I work in a normal bar/restaurant now and, let me tell you, weight loss is not gonna happen haha. it’s always great to have someone else cook for you AND it be healthy!

  8. Good gracious love this whole post! I am just noticing I guess but also love the blog name change! 🙂

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