Noodles & Company Tasting
Yesterday I had the pleasure of attending a tasting at the Noodles & Company restaurant in Encinitas. Back in May, I had stopped at Noodles & Company for the first time for lunch. I met Michael, one the managers, who invited me and a few friends to come back for a tasting of a few of their menu items.
When we arrived at Noodles & Company, we were greeted by a clean, well-lit, inviting environment.
I loved that they had a Community board where people could pin up their business cards and flyers. I added one of my blog’s business cards. Great way for local people to find you, by the way!
You can order your noodles with an Asian, Mediterranean or American flare. But if noodles aren’t your thing, they also offer salads, soups and sandwiches too!
Noodles & Company serves real food with real ingredients. They have 14 different fresh vegetables that they chop and prepare fresh everyday. Actually twice a day….they prepare their vegetables and their pasta fresh in the morning for their lunch crowd and then again in the afternoon for their evening crowd.
You can customize anything! Most of the dishes are vegetarian but you are able to add your favorite protein: chicken, beef, shrimp, meatballs or tofu. You can also make your dish more or less spicy or add, subtract or substitute veggies.
Cara, the general manager, greeted us and showed us to our table. We were excited to go on their culinary tour!
That’s Cathi and I….and Lisa was behind the camera. My husband also joined us!
Right away were we served Chicken & Vegetable Potstickers.
The potstickers were perfectly prepared with a delicious soy sauce based dipping sauce. The sauce added a bit of a kick with the addition of red chili pepper flakes.
We were lucky to try one of their summer salads: Very Berry Spinach Salad.
Strawberries, bacon bits, blue cheese and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar all on top of a bed of spinach. I’m sure you know that I pushed the strawberries aside but loved everything else!
Our pasta adventure commenced in Asia with the Bangkok Curry.
Sweet coconut curry, broccoli, carrots, red pepper, onion, mushrooms, a light portion of rice noodles, served on cabbage with black sesame. This is actually what I ordered the last time I was here and I loved it just as much the second time.
We moved onto our Mediterranean pasta: Pesto Cavatappi which was served with their Parmesan-Crusted Chicken Breast.
The Pesto Cavatappi consisted of curly pasta, basil pesto, garlic, mushrooms, tomato, wine, cream, parmesan and Italian parsley. As soon as it was brought to the table, the aroma was intoxicating. I knew I was going to be a fan. Sure enough, the first bite won me over. The addition of the parmesan-crusted chicken was the perfect compliment. The chicken was pounded thin and crispy on the outside, moist on the inside.
The next stop was home base: America! What’s more American than Wisconsin Mac & Cheese?
A blend of cheddar and jack cheeses, cream, elbow macaroni all topped with tomatoes, bacon bits, homemade bread crumbs and meatballs. I was in love. Talk about decadence!
Just when we thought we had experienced pure bliss, dessert arrived. Rice Krispy treat, Chocolate Chunk Cookie and a Snoodledoodle Cookie (Snickerdoodle).
Lisa put a fork down so you could see the size of these bad boys! Noodles & Company makes their Rice Krispy treats & cookies fresh every day. The cookies were so soft and chewy…the Snoodledoodle won me over!
Thank you to Cara (pictured above with me), Michael and the rest of the Noodles & Company Crew for hosting my friends and I in such a fabulous tasting! I cannot wait to return so I can enjoy some of the dishes I tried today as well as some new ones. They have a Mushroom Stroganoff dish on their menu that caught my eye. ;)