Cafe Reviews

At Salut in Tempe the Stage Is Set, But the Eats Are Still a Step or Two Behind

Salut Kitchen Bar is a kind of Mill Avenue detox.

About a mile and a half east of Tempe's main drag, it's a decidedly relaxing place -- small enough to be considered snug but never erring on the side of compact. Some nights it feels like a post-party afterglow. And if it weren't for the menus and plates of food in hand, the friendly staff might just as well be on the guest list.

But although Salut's stage has been set for its guests to unwind with a Windy Bay pinot noir, a cold craft brew, or a Dutch chocolate martini, its offerings in the way of familiar American eats -- bruschetta, bar snacks, sandwiches, salads, and a few entrées -- are still a step or two behind.

See also: - Tumi Delivers Colorful, Zesty Peruvian Cuisine in Chandler - Spoke & Wheel Pedals to Mediocrity

Here's an excerpt from this week's review:

"Pretty much an obligatory dish at any wine bar, Salut's bruschetta lacks the crunchy, garlic-rubbed, and olive oil-drizzled foundation crucial to the Italian antipasto. Usually served quite soft and barely warm, its long, narrow pieces of bread don't offer much flavor, forcing the toppings into doing the heavy lifting. An acceptable pesto with tomato and Parmesan and a better Ciprian Salsa creation made with tomatoes and sweet pomegranate seeds seem up to the task, but a wild mushroom that tastes more canned than fresh and a rubbery halloumi cheese most decidedly are not."

Want to know more? Read my full review of Salut Kitchen Bar here.

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Laura Hahnefeld
Contact: Laura Hahnefeld