Above, we have the salad that came as part of the Valentine's Day meal at Aya Sofia. Simple, beautiful, delicious, and I won't lie, I gave a little gasp of delight when it arrived. Not being familiar with the precise definition of "composed" when it comes to food, I don't even know that it counts as such, but to my mind, this is a gorgeous, logical way to arrange a salad. Top it off with olives, a slice of grilled summer squash, and one of the best house dressings I've ever had, and it's a lovely way to start a meal, romantic or otherwise.
Below, the Crossings roasted beet salad at The Terrace View, the Fiala venture that overlooks downtown's Citygarden sculpture park. No gasp, because for $8, I was expecting it to look as good as it tasted. And it was indeed delicious -- both varieties of beets were roasted to their full glory, and I'm convinced that the roasting made it easier to appreciate the differences between the two. The goat cheese and sprouts provided a gentle tang and crunch, both necessary counterpoints to the earthy-sweet beets.