Palm Lane has transformed what was once an empty stretch of hallway between shops in Yorkville Village into a customizable salad lover’s paradise.
The project comes from Chase Hospitality Group, the same folks behind The Chase, Planta and Planta Burger, but the similarities pretty much end there. Though still under the direction of Tyler Shedden and with many vegetarian options, there’s also meat and dairy here.
The other small similarity here is a printed wallpaper by Candice Kaye, almost the same as the one in Planta, that wraps around Palm Lane’s island. Storage is located in the centre, with a smoothie prep station at one end and salad prep and ordering at the other.
In a cross between food court and fast casual styles, here you pick a signature salad or bowl or customize your own using a handy sheet with over 80 options, wait and take it to go or grab a number and a seat where water is brought out to you.
Symbols indicating items are vegan, gluten-free, or include nuts or dairy can so often be confusing or difficult to find, but here they’re refreshingly clear as day.
The Bel-Air salad ($13.50) is gluten-free, but does contain dairy due to cheddar cheese, and otherwise is a glorious celebration of all non-vegan flavour combinations, with chicken, thick fatty chunks of bacon, hard-boiled egg, avocado and diced beets that add sweetness all topping iceberg and romaine with some balsamic vinaigrette.
The Indie salad ($13.50) by contrast is vegan and gluten-free, a true happy hippie dish with a rich and warmly spiced mix of kale, romaine, cherry tomato, sweet potato, cauliflower, chickpea, lentil, red onion, rice, crispy shallots, sunflower seeds, and a really nice vadouvan coconut vinaigrette.
The Umami bowl ($14) is also vegan and gluten-free and one of four signature bowl options.
All these options feel substantial so far but perhaps this one the most with kelp noodles, zucchini, carrot, mushroom, sesame seeds, tofu, tamari, miso, and cabbage.
A tahini dressing gradually got a little watery but adds a lot of kick to the bowl, along with salty, truly umami nori that makes this dish feel a little like ramen.
The Hulk smoothie ($11) is even vegan and gluten-free, apple, spinach, avocado, coconut oil, agave, lemon and hemp seeds blended to order at the back bar.
It’s a very healthy-feeling, grassy smoothie, and carries through the nutritious but substantial feel of the rest of the menu.
A range of equally healthy and chic bottled drinks include Village Juicery juices and turmeric shots and ginger or blueberry Tonica Kombucha ($5).
A step up from other lunch options in the area involving plastic trays, Palm Lane respects creativity and dietary restrictions.