Editorial: Salad Days are Over

September 2011 was full of wonder. I was a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed incoming freshman at the time, besotted with the new city I found at my feet, the promise of fledgling friendships, the maple trees that glowed titian under the early autumn sun—and above all, with Bon Appetit’s fall salad.

It was a thing of beauty. Crunchy romaine lettuce topped with tender roasted butternut squash, knobs of crumbling chevre, and jewel-like dried cranberries, all wrapped in a pungent balsamic vinaigrette that tempered the seasonal toppings’ sweetness. I ate that salad on the reg, bankrolled by my required meal plan. Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt.

When the fall salad returned the next year, it had been ruined. The butternut squash was replaced with golden beets. The chevre had turned to feta, and a graceless apple cider vinaigrette supplanted my beloved balsamic. The revised salad was too bitter, nearly acrid. Woe! It was wrong, all wrong.

I’m sorry to say that two other vegetal anathema have beset our campus in the time since. The first occurred when Bon App started charging by the pound, instead of by plate size, for their salad bar offerings. Nowadays I have to plan my salads not around my tastes, but around the lightness of their components. I feel like I’m packing for a RyanAir flight every time I get lunch.

Finally, one last blow was delivered just a few weeks ago. I’ve started to notice that the Greek shake salads—if not on par with the fall salad, then at least with the vegetarian Caesar—have been worryingly absent from campus café lineups. Now, I’m willing to offer the benefit of the doubt. It could be a temporary fluke. But the concern I’ve had since the start of my college career has reared its head again at the end of it: our salads’ salad days may be over.

Caroline Ferguson
Editor in Chief