It's rare for a city of this size to have such a diverse lineup of cafes and restaurants. Within a few blocks, you can find something guaranteed to please your palate.
One of the newer additions to downtown is Soy Noodle House, 1032 Broad St.
Soy will take your taste buds on a tour of the Orient, offering dishes from Vietnam, Korea, Japan, China and Thailand.
Lunch Buddy Donna and I visited on a recent weekday, checking out the chicken lo mein ($7.95) and Thai red curry ($7.95).
When it comes to food portions, it seems most restaurants in Augusta think bigger is better, and Soy is no exception. Each entree was large enough for two to share.
The lo mein stir fry was a winner, filled with chunks of chicken and vegetables. The curry was OK, but was too buttery and lemony for our tastes. The iced tea tastes fresh-brewed but is pricey at $1.75.
This is a great place to relax and enjoy your meal. The interior is classic early 20th century commercial, with distressed brick walls. I had a bit of a problem hearing what my Lunch Buddy was saying in Soy because of the acoustics -- and from my listening to too much loud music over the years.
Soy was busy during our visit and it was a good thing that we could enjoy a leisurely lunch that day. It took a bit more than an hour from the time we sat down until we paid for our meal. We can't fault our server, though. She was efficient and friendly, and easily handled a crowd.
Our tab with tip came in at $22, a bit more than the Lunch Money goal of $20.
We'll be back to check out some of the more unusual items.