I work near Davis Square, Somerville and I try to control my weight, partially by eating a caesar salad for lunch a couple times a week.
After sticking with Dave's Fresh Pasta and enjoying their food and service, I'm now dealing with the Diesel Cafe (257 Elm St) more often than Dave's simply for Diesel's lettuce quality. When you like caesar salads and romaine lettuce, there's not much to compare beside lettuce quality. While Dave's caesars look good, underneath the green lettuce is usually a lot of white heart pieces. But Diesel has been delivering quality lettuce on my every visit. For me, quality is fresh, green lettuce without many inferior heart pieces. While Dave's offers a piece of good bread, Diesel includes four small slices of delicious multigrain (per my special request) bread with a hint of sweetness that I like a bit more than Dave's offerings. The extra cost of Diesel's ceasar hurts, but it's the sacrifice I'm willing to make.
This post is not a slam on Dave's Fresh Pasta! Like many of you, I consider them very special and I appreciate what they offer. I continue to eat there. But once or twice a week I hit the Diesel.