I've never been a fan of Panera Bread, but they keep roping me in. I guess the success of the chain can be traced to some pretty good marketing. But I don't understand how they can gain a following with lousy, overpriced food.
This particular location is pretty nice, with booths, tables and an outdoor patio. They have a bakery section and a cafe section which breaks up the crowd a bit. For the cafe you place your order and they give you one of those flashing gizmos that tell you when the food is ready.
In my previous visits, I've never liked anything I've had. I don't like their coffee. Its not terrible; its just not good. Their iced tea is more like kool-aid and I find it undrinkable. Their chicken salad sandwich is made with bread that will challange your dental work, and it has grapes and almonds in it. Yucksters. So why did I come back? I forgot, I guess. I heard about their new Tomato, Mozzarella and Basil salad and I wanted to try it.
The salad is wholly disappointing from head to toe. First, it was completely different than what I expected. Its 80% lettuce and field greens; I'll bet there wasn't even 1 tomato in it. There's also a small amount of mozzarella cheese; and its not very good cheese either. Thankfully they put the dressing in a container so I could put some of my own Olive Oil Vinegrette on it. There were maybe 2 cucumber slices; what a ripoff for $8.95.
I suppose its my fault. There's a reason people avoid places they didn't like on previous visits. Next time I'll remember.