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Field of greens 

Salad is the main course

• Sparkling seafood salads are the quintessential summer dish. One of the best around is Punta Cana's impeccably dressed octopus salad, Ensalada de Pulpo, laced with cilantro and onions. Punta Cana Caribbean Restaurant & Grill, 5230 South Blvd.

• It's hard to resist revisiting Crisp in the summer. Salads here include the outstanding Cobb with crumbled blue cheese, grilled chicken, chopped egg and a Dijon vinaigrette and the flank steak (cooked to order) salad with sliced portabellas, bits of blue cheese, tomatoes, grilled red onion and a balsamic vinaigrette. Salads can also be custom created, and, even better, substitutions are allowed in the signature dishes. Crisp 7th Street Café, 1971 E. 7th St.

• In addition to marvelous tapas, the salads at Tria Terra are brilliantly cast: one alternates slices of red and golden beets with haricot vert, asparagus, and goat cheese; another arranges arugula with Gorgonzola, caramelized walnuts, and Bosc pears. Tria Terra Restaurant Tapas and Bar, 7707 Pineville-Matthews Road in the Carmel Commons Shopping Center.

• At Terra in Myers Park, the salads are perfectly composed with straight-from-the-garden greens. One is complemented with warmed goat cheese and a shallot vinaigrette, another pairs endive with Roquefort. Terra Restaurant, 545-b Providence Road. Next Door to Starbucks. Closed for vacation June 29 through July 7.

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