SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Sorry, Salt Lake City foodies, the local food scene here in Utah has ranked lower than you might think.
According to WalletHubs’ 2021 Ranking of Best Foodie Cities in America, Salt Lake City ranks 27th among the best in the nation. Portland, Oregon topped the list, followed by Orlando and Miami, Florida for silver and bronze medals, respectively.
Other cities that beat SLC were Cincinnati, Ohio, famous for serving chili on spaghetti noodle, and Buffalo, New York, known for – you guessed it – Buffalo chicken wings.
Salt Lake City may have been snubbed by WalletHub’s rankings, according to Alondra Loex, better known as foodieutah on Instagram.
“I feel that Utah is a great place for foodies because we have so many restaurants,” said the influencer. “They keep coming back, and to be honest, I feel invited to a grand opening almost once a week.”
Interestingly, Loex attributes Utah’s diverse dining scene, which can include dishes from around the world, to its religious heritage. It is not uncommon, she says, for returned missionaries to return from Latter-day Saints of Jesus Christ and open a restaurant to share the food they have learned to love in their missions.
As a “pro foodie,” Loex says that the other passionate members of the Utah foodie community often talk about little more than what’s going on in the SLC restaurant scene and enjoy trying new places and legendary long-time favorites as you can.
Foodies in Utah will likely recognize many of the featured restaurants on the list below.
Here are some of the best foodie-friendly restaurants in the Wasatch Front area. Of course, with so many restaurants in the area, this is not an exhaustive list.
This is also not a sponsored post.
Among people who can eat at pretty much any restaurant in the country, Valters Osteria on Broadway in downtown Salt Lake City is one of the best in the country. When NBA teams are in town to play against jazz, most of the time at least a few players and staff, if not the entire team, can be seen in the Tuscan Granary-inspired intimate hotspot. This seal of approval from the basketball world is reflected in a jazz mural on the west side of the building.
The Mandarin’s location in Bountiful, by the side of a former grocery store, may be humble, but the food is some of the best in the state and has been the most enjoyed since 1977. Inside the restaurant, the traditional Chinese decor sets the tone for an authentic one. with delicious fried rice, Singapore noodles and Peking beef as highlights on the menu. If you grew up in Davis County and never went or heard of Mandarin, did you really grow up in Davis County?
After a hike in Millcreek Canyon with your partner, nothing rounds off the romantic occasion better than a meal in Log Haven. The building, built in 1920 and perfectly located in the forest, looks almost unreal and looks more like something out of a Hallmark holiday film. Menu options such as tuna tartare, bison steak and bacon wrapped elk are legendary in the Utah food scene. The combination of ambience, food and overall experience is so seamless that it feels as if the coexistence of man and nature is to be found in the Log Haven.
Located at 1300 S and 1100 E, Kyoto is perhaps the most authentic piece of Japan in the state. For example, when the restaurant opened in 1984, the waiters and waiters were all dressed in traditional kimonos, which at the time was a dazzling piece of a unique SLC dining experience. Nowadays, many restaurant employees still wear kimono to serve many of the same dishes that have been a hit over the past four decades, including ebi tempura, agedashi tofu, and salty-sweet teriyaki. The sushi bar is also very good, prepared by head chef Peggy Ince-Whiting, who is a member of an exclusive club, one of the few female chefs who have been trained in a sushi bar in Japan. It’s as real as it gets here.
Current fish & oyster
Yes, Salt Lake City and all of Utah are landlocked states. Big thing. The folks at Current don’t care about geographic barriers, they will still offer the best fresh seafood from around the country. Caramelized organic salmon and Spanish octopus currently dominate the menu, but the oysters could be the main work of the establishment, which also has an impressive wine list. Don’t be fooled by the sleek exterior, as soon as you step inside the old brick building you will be blown away.
The same group of restaurant owners that Current owns also owns Stanza, one of the best contemporary Italian venues in town. Italian food has long been known to be quite good, but Stanza adds a modern twist to many of the classics while also offering a very contemporary feel. Want to throw a lobster tail on a plate of pasta? You can do that at Stanza. If your palette isn’t quite that familiar with traditional Italian, you will likely have to googling some of the menu items before making your choices, but chances are you’ll be pretty happy with what you get in the end.
If it tastes like the food at Table X came straight from the vine, it’s because it was. Many of the restaurant’s products come straight from the garden behind the building and make for an extremely fresh experience. The tasting menu is a little different from most restaurant menus. You have the choice between five or seven plates from nine offers as well as a separate vegetarian menu. Table X’s mantra is to provide an unparalleled farm-to-table experience, so alive that you can literally watch the food grow out of the earth before your very eyes.
What do you think? Which ones did we miss? Let us know in the following Facebook post: