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Salad Bar Owner Mixes Veggies and Pilates

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – When Samantha Young wanted to eat healthy on White Plains' Mamaroneck Avenue, with its countless pizzerias and gastro pubs, she opened her own salad bar.

“It wasn’t like I wanted to be an owner all my life,” said the proprietor of Mix it Up: A Salad Boutique . “I just thought, ‘why doesn’t White Plains have anything like this?’ ”

The former New York City event planner was used to lunching on healthy fare. "There are a lot of places in [New York City] like this and I thought, 'what a great idea.'"

A White Plains fixture for eight years now, A Salad Boutique is filled with culinary surprises. Just this past month an accidental delivery of shredded coconut helped create a fruity summertime delight complete with sweet ginger dressing and mangos. "We can do something different every day," she said.

I found this out firsthand when I ordered a concoction Young cleverly labels “Everything but the Kitchen Sink.” It’s a combo of bleu, gorgonzola and shaved parmesan cheeses with shrimp, hearts of palm and artichokes, all atop a bed of arugula.

Running one’s own restaurant comes with early wake-up calls and very little free time, though. Up at 6 a.m. and taking care of customers and orders all day and night made Young hunger for a bit of relaxation.

Which is why she has savored spending time at nearby Apogee Pilates and Wellness Center for the past two years.

“The knowledge they have [at Apogee] is like going to a physical therapist,” she added.

But the hard work is a labor of love for Young, whose leap of faith has resulted in a loyal clientele in White Plains and around Westchester.

"I had my mother looking down on me saying, 'You never know until you try it,' " she says of her decision to open Mix it Up.

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