Any time a new restaurant opens in Concord, the Food Snob's inbox gets flooded with tips. Not steak tips, unfortunately - scientists are still working on the beef e-mail technology - but requests from readers asking the Snob to try the new joint and review it. Well, the Snob is a man (or woman - it remains a mystery) of the people, so we headed over to the Soup Gallery to check it out.
The Soup Gallery sits in Capital Plaza in the back of 55 N. Main St. While it doesn't have indoor seating yet, there is a patio out front with a couple little tables. We staked our claim and went inside to order. It wasn't too busy when we visited at around 1 p.m., which was a blessing, since the inside of the Gallery is a tight squeeze when there are more than a few people there. We ordered some soups and sandwiches and sat outside to await our meals on a beautiful summer afternoon.
Our dining companion got the chicken salad wrap ($8.95) and a cup of "bread soup" ($4.65). The wrap was fantastic - a hefty helping of chicken salad, heaping with moist chunks of chicken. A touch of honey in the chicken salad gave it sweet undertones that were complemented perfectly by homemade cranberry relish. We had already committed to a soup and sandwich combo, but the wrap could have stood alone and been a filling lunch. We still had our cup of "bread soup" to consume, however!
That could have been a stand-alone meal as well. Artisanal bread, loads of garlic and a bit of heavy cream made up this rich, decadent soup. It was too much to swallow after eating a full wrap, but that's not a bad thing - who ever complained about portions that were too big?
The Snob got a cup of chicken and corn chipotle soup ($4.65) and a "Bit of a Bite" sandwich ($8.95). The sandwich consisted of honey maple ham, pepper jack cheese, mustard and greens on a jalapeno wrap. Compared to the thorough flavor profile of the chicken salad wrap, this sandwich left a little to be desired - but that may have been a product of trying the tastiest item first.
The soup, of course, was excellent. It was made using coconut milk, enabling it to stay dairy-free and pairing with the cilantro to fuse a Thai flavor with the Southwestern theme. Bits of corn floated about in the cup and the spicy chipotle/cayenne flavor built nicely for a hot - but not too hot - aftertaste.
We were stuffed after this meal, to be certain, but the Snob still found the ability to eat one (okay, two or three) more bites when a plate of complimentary cookie wedges made its way around the patio. Fully sated, we went inside to pay and discovered that technological leaps and bounds had been made since the last time we went out to eat. The staff gave us the option of getting our receipt not just in paper form, but via email or even in a text message! We felt like quite the Luddites as we pocketed our old-school paper receipt. Still, even neo-Luddites have to eat!