Thursday, July 17, 2014

Black Bean Co. Comes to Columbia

The Black Bean Co. from Charleston has joined the Capital City ranks.  Before I even knew they were coming here, or were already here for that matter, I noticed their Folly Road location as we were headed for Folly Beach a few weeks ago.  And lo and behold, they are here and I got to check them out yesterday with my mom and dad.

If you haven't ever been to a Black Bean Co. or checked out their website, their concept (as I saw on the back of aT-shirt) is "Diet Food is Out, Energy Food is in."  The menu consists of breakfast and lunch offerings, mainly in the form of wraps and salads featuring local and/or organic and natural foods. You choose your protein to add to their creative and vast assortment of choices.  And, that's what really hit me today.  There are times that when lunch rolls around I just think about having some kind of a good sandwich.  But if you really think about it, there aren't many places anymore that offer any sandwiches of any interest. It's all the same:  turkey with some bacon, buffalo chicken, the same-ol-same-ol chicken salad, turkey with blah, blah, blah.  You won't have that problem at the Black Bean Co.

I ordered one of the "Pure Energy Wraps" entitled the Black and Blue. It is a gigantic wrap of white meat chicken, blue cheese, avocado, mixed greens, black beans, rice and the best condiment: fig balsamic vinaigrette.  All of the components were wonderful but that vinaigrette is fantastic and just ties it all together.  I do wish the avocado were a bit more plentiful however.

The Black and Blue

The Fig Balsamic Vinaigrette rock this wrap!

 My mom ordered the Thanksgiving Joy.  As many of you know from this post, my mom is the Thanksgiving turkey & dressing-a-holic to end all holics. This one is packed full of turkey, cranberry, sprouts, mixed greens and fresh mozz.  Dad opted for the Beach Burrito.  This wrap consists of chicken, mango salsa, mixed greens, black beans, rice, sprouts and guacamole.  Both mom and dad liked their choices very much. However, once my dad got a couple bites into the 2nd half of his wrap, the ingredients dwindled down to nothing but salsa, greens and rice.  Lots and lots of rice.  Mom and I encouraged him to take it to the counter and let the staff know, but my dad isn't a wave maker.

The Thanksgiving Joy
The Beach Burrito

 We all ordered our sandwiches as a combo (wrap, side, drink) because we learned from the lady taking our order that it is more economically sensible to order it that way, as a sandwich and drink are only a few cents less.  So, it's like getting a free side.  This makes me wonder why not just feature all the wraps with a side and drink for one price?  

Potato salad is kind of like pizza...there are 5.17M+ ways to make it.  The salad at Black Bean is a pretty classic preparation with hard boiled egg, chopped red onion and chopped celery.  I really thought my mom would reject it because she's not a raw onion fan at all.  But, she ate all of hers without complaint, so that says something.  I loved the flavor, but I'm not a hard boiled egg fan which means I'm constantly teasing through mine looking for the egg slivers.  Plus, you guys know how I feel about celery, right?  I forced myself to just plow through the celery, but I truly think celery is the vegetable from hell. Somehow someone managed to convince the rest of the population that EVERYBODY just loves that foul stalk of ickiness. Not so much.

So, here's the deal.  I really like this place. The choices (choose your protein) and all the fresh veggies are more than abundant.  The combinations they've come up with make for a vastly interesting array of sandwich and salad choices.  And, they have a kids menu that makes me smile.  One thing I'd offer to the management, if they wanted my opinion, is to offer the wrap in a half size.  They are enormous.  I  couldn't even think about eating my whole wrap.  

Yea!  No styrofoam!
I do love the fact the the Black Bean Co. is using paper to-go boxes, but consider this.  If I could just order a half-size wrap, no to-go container of any sort is necessary.  Just sayin'...

Black Bean Co. on Urbanspoon

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