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Fort Worth’s Sensational Summer Salads — Top Restaurants Embrace the Flavors of the Season

When Eating Local Is Refreshing and Cool

BY // 08.14.23

Sometimes you aren’t in the mood for a four course meal or even a heavy entree. In the dog days of summer, there’s a lot to be said for the perfection of a seasonal summer salad. Fresh ripe melons and fruits mix with pristine greens and herbs. Vine-ripened tomatoes blend with specialty cheeses. . . In many ways, it’s the perfect summer meal. Luckily, Fort Worth restaurants are taking summer salads to a new level.

Here’s your guide to where to find the Best Summer Salads in Fort Worth:

Fireside Pies

With its recent return to Fort Worth’s Left Bank neighborhood, Fireside Pies brings way more than just crafty pizzas. In some ways, this Fort Worth restaurant is an escape to a Positano terrace overlooking the Amalfi coast. And it has a summer salad to swoon over.

Fireside’s Texas Bibb Salad is layered with cherry tomatoes, creamy avocado, hearts of palm, green onion, bacon, goat cheese and a tangy but delicate shallot red wine vinaigrette.

Clay Pigeon

Chef Marcus Paslay’s Clay Pigeon has been killing it for nearly a decade. It survived the long White Settlement Bridge construction and was one of the first new Fort Worth restaurants to join the burgeoning Foundry District (alongside its neighbor Angelo’s Barbecue). It also knows how to do summer salads right.

Clay Pigeon’s watermelon salad is topped with tamarind, lemongrass, pickled Fresno chili and crumbled feta.

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Clay Pigeon's watermelon summer salad brings the flavors of the season home.
Clay Pigeon’s watermelon summer salad brings the flavors of the season home.

Taste Community Kitchen

Taste Community Kitchen is Fort Worth’s pay-what-you-can restaurant. This spot serves some incredible seasonal food, relying on volunteers and donations to make their food available to all. Taste is also very much into the summer salad scene.

Taste’s tomato and peach salad is like diving into a garden with ripe summer tomatoes, peaches, arugula, red onion and farro tossed in a balsamic vinaigrette and served on whipped house-made ricotta cheese.

Quince Fort Worth

The newish restaurant transplant from San Miguel de Allende,Mexico is Quince, positioned alongside the Trinity River in Fort Worth’s WestBend neighborhood. The bright interiors provide an air conditioned oasis to sample an interesting fusion menu. Including a very worthy summer salad.

Quince’s torched peach and tomato salad gives off summer vibes with a chunk of fresh burrata cheese and torched peaches bringing out their natural sugar. This summer salad is plated with mixed greens and toasted amaranth, in a lemon-serrano vinaigrette, with a drizzle of aged balsamic.

Ellerbe Fine Foods

Chef Molly McCook is known for giving credit where credit is due at Ellerbe Fine Foods. She lists the farmers and raisers prominently on her restaurant’s menus, and she shops at the city’s local farmers markets to come up with her seasonal offerings. Which include a sweet summer salad.

Ellerbe’s cucumber and crab salad is chock full of market cucumbers and spring onions, with colossal crabmeat and a fresh cilantro aioli, tossed in a Thai vinaigrette, and topped with crushed peanuts and chilis.

Ellerbe's summer salad will having you eating right and local.
Ellerbe’s summer salad will having you eating right and local.

Water’s Coastal Cuisine

Chef Jon Bonnell’s downtown restaurant hideaway is the quintessence of seaside summer living all year round. Along with seafood staples from redfish to salmon, refreshing salads are a staple at Water’s Coastal Cuisine too.

Water’s heirloom tomato and fried goat cheese salad brings peppery arugula with a garlic ranch or roasted red pepper vinaigrette.

Cafe Modern

One of Wolfgang Puck’s signature salads is a menu staple at most of this mega celebrity chef’s restaurants, including at Fort Worth’s Cafe Modern, helmed by Chef Jett Mora. This is a summer salad that comes with those striking views inside the dramatic Modern Art Museum.

Cafe Modern’s chinois salad is a real meal filled with shredded Crystal Valley chicken breast, Napa cabbage, candied cashews and crispy wontons in a sesame-ginger dressing topped with fresh cilantro.

Yes, it’s summer salad season and Fort Worth’s top restaurants are all in.

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