Smoothies-N-Things Cafe is a small chain, with fewer than ten locations across Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana. We’ve had our location, in the Promenade shopping center on Highway 72 in northern Madison, since the late spring. We visited on a recent Saturday afternoon. As we walked toward the door and I noticed the restaurant’s immediate proximity to a national ice cream chain, I thought “Wow, the sweet game in here probably needs to be pretty strong.” Read on.
Primarily, the “things” in Smoothies-N-Things turn out to be a varied selection of wraps, paninis, and quesadillas, all priced at $6-7. Paninis come on flavorful ciabatta bread, while wraps and quesadillas are available with your choice of herb garlic, spinach, tomato basil, or wheat tortillas. There are also five different salads available.
Nothing is premade, so your reasonable wait of five to ten minutes is rewarded with freshness.
The chicken bacon ranch buzz on social media is strong, so we had two enthusiastic takers on that—one wrap and one quesadilla. Lea and Nathan both spoke highly of their lunches. Aaron’s honey barbecue chicken panini also vanished quickly (and the sauce was delicious). None of these suffered from the too-common quick-service error of dried-out chicken. (I guess that would be a fowl foul, wouldn’t it? Groan.) My panini, with a generous allotment of ham and perfectly melted Swiss, made me happy.
The Star of the Show – SMOOTHIES
The smoothie menu is extensive indeed, ranging from single flavors to complex cocktails. These are $5-8, depending on size, whether you choose an organic variety, and so forth. All of these aim for a sweet flavor profile. There are many off-the-beaten-path ingredients included in the various selections, such as guava, pomegranate, and passion fruit.
Additionally, there are blend-in enhancers available for $.75 each. These mostly skew toward healthy living, and include greens blends, whey or soy proteins, and non-fat yogurt. Lea went with strawberry mango, while I got a Patriot—strawberry, peach, pear, and apricot. They were flavorful and very cold. Proceed carefully to avoid the dreaded “brain freeze.”
The boys went with frozen cream blends. Somewhere between a milkshake and soft-serve ice cream in consistency, these are available in 17 different flavors, ranging from New York cheesecake to root beer float. Aaron’s orange cream blend tasted like happy grade school times to me, with a strong Creamsicle vibe. He enjoyed it. Nathan’s mocha frappé was the star of the visit. With delightful waves of creamy chocolate and strong-but-pleasant coffee flavors, we all enthusiastically “helped” him with it. (Don’t worry; he still got most of it.) Very highly recommended.
Smoothies-N-Things for Kids
There is no children’s menu in evidence. However, with ample inexpensive offerings largely familiar to small hands and palates, this is not a significant liability. There are casual seating spaces up front that might accommodate a strollered or car-seated child for a time, but there are no highchairs or booster seats available. Also, though the single-seater restrooms are clean, there are no changing tables. There is room for Smoothies-N-Things to up its family-friendly game on these fronts.
Smoothies-N-Things is a welcome addition to area fare, costing no more than fast food but with fresher and more interesting offerings. Put this in your rotation, Rocket City Moms and Dads. (And let us know how the rest of the frozen cream blends are. I’ve a feeling it will take us a while to move away from the mocha frappés.)