1735 N. Lynn St.
Arlington, VA 22209
CUISINE Cafe, International, Vegetarian/Vegan
PRICE Under $12
HOURS Open for lunch and dinner daily.
NVM AWARDS None
NEARBY METRO Orange(Rosslyn) Blue Line(Rosslyn)
By Warren Rojas
"That’s a pretty boring looking salad," a Starbucks-guzzling fellow ribbed a buddy who was waiting on line at Chop't.
"The really sad thing is that that," the made-to-order salad devotee said, gesturing to the additive-packed designer coffee, "took almost as long as that," he said, pointing to the verdant, vitamin-filled meal taking shape before their very eyes.
Game. Set. Match.
That salutary superiority comes courtesy of the NYC-born Chop't, an assembly-line salad maker that prides itself on variety—one in-store promo cites 61 toppings, 26 dressings, five greens and umpteen million flavor combinations—and high-quality produce.
Co-founder Colin McCabe says he's been pleasantly surprised by Rosslyn's solid residential support, intimating that corporate expected to rake in the cabbage during weekday lunch. While that's certainly happening, McCabe suggests that dinner and weekend traffic is already beating expectations, due mostly to local runners/gym rats "making Chop't part of their routine."
The salads, meanwhile, are anything but rote cuisine.
A Chinese companion was a bit worried the Asian salad would taste like a "ginger stereotype explosion," but was instead intrigued by the tart oranges. Other standouts included the carrots and crunchy noodles (ginger was certainly front and center, but not necessarily overwhelming).
The 10-vegetable medley summons a kaleidoscope of wholesome flavors. Juicy beets stain the entire vegetable jumble hot pink, infusing each bite with a vigorous crunch and mild sweetness, while roasted corn passes along some smoky notes, diced tomatoes deliver bursts of zing, and green peas provide blips of sweet.