Restaurant name: Columbia Restaurant
Owners: Richard and Casey Gonzmart
Address: 411 St. Armands Circle, Sarasota
Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday through Thursday; and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday
Known for: Columbia is known for its award-winning Spanish/Cuban cuisine and front-row seats for dining and people-watching on the Circle.
Columbia’s Original “1905” Salad
In the 1970s, this flavorful salad was the Columbia’s answer to the ubiquitous salad bar. Created by waiter Tony Noriega in the 1940s, it was adapted by the Columbia, eventually phasing out the use of black olives and celery. The Columbia kitchen designed a new dressing that features Worcestershire sauce, lemon and parmesan cheese.
4 cups iceberg lettuce, broken into 1-and-1/2-inch pieces
1 ripe tomato, cut into eighths
1/2 cup baked ham, julienne 2 inches by 1/8 inch (may substitute turkey or shrimp)
1/2 cup Swiss cheese, julienne 2 inches by 1/8 inch
1/2 cup pimiento-stuffed green Spanish olives
2 cups “1905” Dressing (see recipe below)
1/2 cup Romano cheese, grated
2 tablespoons Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce
Combine lettuce, tomato, ham, Swiss cheese, and olives in a large salad bowl. Before serving, add “1905” dressing, romano cheese, Worcestershire and the juice of one lemon. Toss well and serve immediately. Makes two full salads or four side salads.
1/2 cup extra-virgin Spanish olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/8 cup white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Mix olive oil, garlic, and oregano in a bowl with a wire whisk. Stir in vinegar, gradually beating to form an emulsion, and then season with salt and pepper. For best results, prepare one to two days in advance and refrigerate.