(Make your own) Noodle Bowl

Restaurant: Nalley Fresh
Website: http://www.nalleyfresh.com
Location visited: 6455 Dobbin Rd #45, Columbia, MD 21045
Recommend? Yes

I’ll be the first to admit when I’m wrong… and so: I WAS WRONG. I wrote a quick review of Nalley Fresh last month and I jumped into a conclusion an opinion way too fast, based on ONE THING I tried on the menu and didn’t bother giving them a chance after that.

…until the owner stumbled upon my review and invited OFV to dinner to hopefully change our minds, and show us the ins and outs of the menu.

And folks, our minds were changed! We both ordered something completely different based on Chef Greg Nalley’s (+Nalley’s CMO, Maggie’s) recommendation and it was like we stepped into a brand new restaurant. We thought that the bowl we ordered last time was slightly bland, little to no flavoring… but it was because we went about it completely wrong.

The thing is, we didn’t fully understand how the menu worked… and to fully make the most of this restaurant, you have to understand it.

You choose a protein. You choose your greens (or go all out and choose ALL FOUR). You stack up your ingredients. Choose a dressing if you want. Choose a broth if you want. Stack them all up. The BEST part about it all? You can put as many ingredients as you want for NO EXTRA CHARGE! (exceptions: extra protein, egg, avocado).  I’m all about healthy ingredients, and I’m even more all about (free) EXTRA healthy INGREDIENTS.

So this time around, instead of getting a pre-made bowl, I made my own. I honestly don’t remember what I got in the bowl pictured above but I think I basically created my official go-to bowl. It’s so flavorful that it’s a complete 180 from the last meal I had. It was something like… noodles, spicy Thai pork, blue cheese, bean sprouts, a squeeze of lime, onions, tomatoes, wheatberry, spinach, sweet potatoes, Asian dressing and boom boom sauce.

Outside of the food, we had a grand ol’ time. We became new fans of Nalley Fresh not only because we found something we liked, but because the owner cared about his consumers. I can’t reiterate enough how important that is to us. He saw that we weren’t happy and he did something about it. He didn’t force us to like it but he gave us options, alternatives to try based on our preferred palate. He talked to us. We got to learn a little bit more about what drives him as a chef, and where he sees the restaurant is going. And you know what? It was all great!

Thinking about doing the Whole30 challenge in the near future, and you bet Nalley Fresh will be our go to restaurant when we’re feeling too lazy to cook.

Many thanks Greg and Maggie– you got a fan out of us! 

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