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It’s A Wrap – September 2018

Saffron Valley - biryani (Saffron Valley)
Saffron Valley - biryani (Saffron Valley)
Saffron Valley – biryani (Saffron Valley)

Saffron Valley

Starting this Tuesday (October 2nd) and running through to Sunday (October 7th), the Sugar House location of Saffron Valley celebrates its annual Monsoon Biryani and Kebab Festival. The exploration of authentic cuisine from North and South of India seeks to offer diners a more diverse choice of dishes that might be ordinarily seen at local restaurants.

The restaurant writes: The enticing smell of the kebab and the rich aroma of Biryani will take you back into the royal era of the Nizams. In many parts of India, a popular thing to eat is a kebab. Made by mounting vegetables and/or pieces of meat on a skewer and grilling it, this is a yummy blend of food that is sure to fill you up. While lamb is a common meat used for kebabs, we will also be offering chicken and vegetarian options.

Biryani is a beloved Indian dish, one that requires experience to make, but let us assure you that our chefs are up to the task. Biryani, a casserole of sorts is made with long-grained rice and layered with chicken, lamb or fish along with vegetables. Biryani is seasoned with exotic spices, such as saffron, and it is sealed with dough and simmered over a low flame. At the festival, we’ll be offering several different kinds of biryani for you to taste and explore.

Saffron Valley - chicken kebabs (Saffron Valley)
Saffron Valley – chicken kebabs (Saffron Valley)

Festival kebab options include:

* Tandoor chicken kebabs – tandoor grilled boneless chicken marinated in exotic spices

* Mushroom malai tikka – grilled mushrooms marinated in cream and authentic spices

* Broccoli mussalam – broccoli grilled in a Mughlai-based makhani sauce

* Lucknowi tangdi kebab – grilled chicken drumsticks marinated in a blend of spices for added moistness

* Achari chicken kebab – boneless chicken marinated in pickle spices and cooked in the tandoor

* Lamb galouti kebab – finely minced and seasoned lamb kebabs made using the popular Lucknowi preparation method

* Tandoori malai chops – marinated in a special blend of house spices and grilled

* Hussaini seekh kebab – minced meat shaped into long kebabs and grilled on skewers

* Ajwaini machili – salmon cooked with a blend of aromatic spices and caraway

* Mahi tikka- mahi mahi marinated in a blend of specialty spices, mint and ginger

* Jinga rani – jumbo prawns grilled in a blend of house spices

Festival dum biryanis include:

* Saffron murgh dum biryani – Lucknowi-style biryani dish made with chicken, saffron and spices

* Ambur chicken biryani – South Indian-style biryani made with chicken and regional spices

* Malabar fish biryani – fish biryani made with cream coconut and mild spices

* Saffron mixed biryani – a house favorite, this biryani dish includes chicken, lamb, fish and shrimp

* Talapakatti goat biryani – a Southern Indian regional specialty

All dishes are accompanied by a side of vegetarian or chicken gravy. You can also choose a refreshing addition of pineapple raitha, boondi raitha or a classic cucumber raitha. During the event, menu items will be priced $12.99 to $18.99. Hours Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2.30 p.m. and from 5-10 p.m. On Saturdays the restaurant opens from 11 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. and 5-10 p.m. The Bistro opens similar Sunday hours, albeit closes an hour early at 9 p.m.

479 E 2100 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84115
(801) 203-3754

DABC licenses

A brisk paced meeting for the DABC September get together, with no huge shocks or surprises. A few of the more interesting business approved to pour include: Sonoma Grill, a new wine bar and fine dining restaurant in the Peery Hotel slated to open in October; the Sicilia Mia downtown location, which presumably means the legal wrangles are now done and dusted; and also Ramen Bar, snuggly nestled in between Eva and London Belle in downtown SLC – because people really really really can’t get enough ramen.

Full service licenses (beer, wine liquor)

Fat Fish, Bountiful
Spitz, Lehi
Tupelo, Park City (dual license, bar upstairs restaurant down)
Sonoma Grill, Salt Lake City, conditional
Sicilia Mia Downtown, Salt Lake City, conditional
Christopher’s Prime, Salt Lake City (also received a banquet and catering license)
Guru’s Sports Bar & Grill, St George

Limited service license (beer and wine)

Erwan Thai Cuisine, Cedar City
Ramen Bar, Salt Lake City
Juniper Pizza, Springdale
Karuwaa, South Jordan, conditional
Red Fort Cuisine of India, St George, conditional
Itto Sushi, Salt Lake City, conditional

proper brewing gose style beer
Proper Brewing Co – coming to Sugar House this October

Bar license

Three licenses were available in September with at least one more expected to come available in October. Sugar House Proper, currently expect a late October opening for their Utah-beer exclusively focused brew house, was conditionally approved; as was Pete’s Tavern in West Haven, looking at an October 8th opening date.

Oddfellows Market adjacent to Under Current Bar in Salt Lake City was also granted a license, in turn relinquishing their existing restaurant license. Laurie Nilsen was joined by construction manager Eric De Bonis who explained the license change requirement for the business:

logistics of the operation don’t really lend themselves to a restaurant. So it’s a food market, food hall with bar and it’s a casual environment, so any movement would put us in violation as a restaurant. It’s purely as logistics and ability to abide by law. It’s almost impossible with a restaurant liquor license.

I know a number of people have been watching this space to see exactly what happens next. By the sounds of things, it certainly sound intriguing, and now with licensing in hand, set to open any day.


Richard Lim of Billy B’s Hash House appeared before the commission to request a further extension for his licensing, which has seen delay after delay. As well as the original nine month window after the original conditional licensing – plus a recent 60 day extension – Lim was granted 30 more days to open. Lim projected an October 16th opening date, assuring the commission it was now or never, standing to lose the building lease if he did not open.

Templin Family Brewing were also approved for both a manufacturing license and a Type 5 Package Agency license.

HSL - dessert
HSL – goodbye to brunch, but dinner will still be served

Restaurant closures

Dolce Siciliathought these guys might be the one to tame this cursed spot; but nope, they do have feel afoul to what I can only assume at this point is the entrance to the gates of hell in the basement. Reported on on Facebook the Sugar House location of this otherwise eminently popular Sicilian eatery is to shutter:

These are the final days for our sister restaurant, Dolce Sicilia. We refuse to be sad, instead we celebrate the future! Our family may be saying goodbye to Sugarhouse but we welcome the new adventures that await us Downtown, at Station Park and in Cottonwood Heights. It’s not too late to pop in for a final farewell!!!! Here is a tribute to the staff, the family and to all our Sugarhouse peeps that have supported us. We love you!!!

Cafe Trio – The Park City location o this small group also announced its imminent closure via Facebook. It doesn’t appear as though the downtown SLC or Cottonwood locations will be affected by the move.

HSL – Don’t panic, not a full closure per se, but brunch is now off the menu at this downtown New American favorite.

Taqueria 27 - Argentine Shrimp over T27 Slaw topped with Cucumber-Mango Salsa & Cilantro Lime Crema on Flour (T27)
Taqueria 27 – Argentine shrimp over T27 slaw topped with cucumber-mango salsa & cilantro lLime crema on Flour (T27)

Taqueria 27

Lehi marks the spot for the fifth location of husband and wife team Todd and Kristin Gardiner chic taqueria – the first outside of Salt Lake County too. The following via Press Release about the new opening:

While the restaurant has experience tremendous growth, it is still focused on sourcing local ingredients and growing its own produce as much as possible. This emphasis sets it apart from many of the other chains prevalent in the area.

The menu is specially crafted by Todd, who has spent the past 25 years honing his chef skills at popular Utah establishments such as Log Haven, The New Yorker, Z-Tejas, and Aerie at Snowbird. Foodies will be enamored of the variety of tacos and guacamole available, including daily specials designed to incorporate seasonal ingredients. A full bar will also be available at the restaurant, including an assortment of Taqueria 27’s famous signature margaritas.

“We are really excited to expand to Lehi. It is a great opportunity for us to be a part of the dynamic new business community right past the point of the mountain. This new site will be our largest and we anticipate it being our busiest location yet. This will also be our largest patio,” said Kristin Gardner, co-owner of Taqueria 27. “What sets the Lehi location apart is that we will have an open bar area – since the liquor laws have changed and allow for a separate bar area in a restaurant. Customers can expect our chef-created tacos & fine tequilas in one of the very few full service, sit down restaurants in Lehi.”

The Lehi location will continue Taqueria 27’s tradition of an inviting atmosphere with chef-driven, yet affordable food. This new location makes it perfect for business lunches and other meetings, as well as evening dining with family and friends. Taqueria 27 in Lehi opened in late August.

1688 W Traverse Pkwy, Lehi, UT 84043
(801) 331-8033

Kiitos Brewing - coffee cream ale (Kiitos)
Kiitos Brewing – coffee cream ale (Kiitos)

Great American Beer Fest

The results are in and while not as all conquering as years past – hats off hops off to these two local brewers.

Kiitos Brewing took gold in the Coffee Beer category just in time to celebrate their one year anniversary. Side note: Ill confess, that even as a thorough lush, I’ve started to tire of so many same ol same ol craft beers: “wow, you just discovered IPA, great“. I randomly grabbed a sixer of this particular brew a month or two back and can confirm, its excellent stuff.

Shades Of Pale also nabbed an impressive gold in the American-Style Sour Ale category for their Kveik. More on both in the Trib.

Park City Dine About

The Park City Area Restaurant Association (PCARA) hosts its sixth annual Dine About, not O’Round, no. The event kicks off on Monday, October 1st and runs for two full weeks. Twenty-four Park City area restaurants will take part in the 2018 event that functions much like its SLC inspiration. Menus of two-course lunches and three-course dinners are offered at $10-$15 and $20-$40 per person respectively.

Restaurants with Dine About menus this year include: Café Terigo, Café Trio Park City, Chimayo, Deer Valley Grocery~Café, Element Kitchen & Bakery, Firewood on Main, Flanagan’s on Main, Fletcher’s Park City, Grappa, Handle, Purple Sage, Red Rock Junction, Red Tail Grill, Riverhorse on Main, Riverhorse Provisions, Shabu, Silver Star Café, Squatters, Sushi Blue, The Brass Tag, tupelo, Twisted Fern, Versante and Wasatch Brew Pub.


If you act fast, you still might be able to grab a few teutonically inspired dishes around town as follows:

Red Rock – offering four items: Pork schnitzel ala Holstein – pork tenderloin cutlet, breaded and sautéed golden brown. Accented with demiglace and topped with fried eggs and capers. Served with buttered spaetzle, beer braised apples and cabbage, warm German potato salad, $15

Locally made bratwurst plate with baked sauerkraut – served with buttered spaetzle, beer braised apple and cabbage, warm German potato salad, whole grain ale mustard, $14

Warm German pretzel, served with whole grain ale mustard, $4

Bienenstich cake – served with fresh seasonal berries, $7

Prohibition are offering $4 sauerkraut brats and $9 big ass beers including Wasatch Pumpkin and Bohemian Oktoberfest.

Snowbird – The grandaddy of all local events still has a few weeks left to run, rounding off the 2018 celebrations the weekend of Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st.

Salsa Queen - gourmet red chili salsa (Salsa Queen)
Salsa Queen – gourmet red chili salsa (Salsa Queen)

Salsa Queen

This local producer recently announced a new delivery service. Starting more than four years ago from humble farmer’s market beginnings, you can now order the Salsa Queen’s product online for home delivery. Use code AWESOME at checkout for free delivery all through October. I for one am finding increased reasons to never leave the lazy comfort of my chair. Here’s the full press release with the details:

From an uneducated immigrant to founder of a growing salsa empire, Maharba Zapata started Salsa Queen as a single mother to provide for her seven children. She began making salsa in her kitchen with her children as assistants and selling her wares at farmers markets. Today, she has a 3,000 square-foot commercial kitchen, sells her delicious salsas in nearly 100 stores, and now online as well.

Salsa Queen offers five salsa varieties: Gourmet Pico, Red Chili, Roasted Tomatillo, Creamy Jalapeño, and Queso Chipotle. No sugars or preservatives are added and they are also gluten-free. Products are made in small batches to ensure the highest artisan quality.

“When I started Salsa Queen, failure wasn’t an option,” Zapata said. “Four years later, I’m living the American Dream with 40 employees and salsa on shelves in 100 stores. So now we’re joining the growing list of fresh-food delivery brands, offering our unique, fresh flavors to customers via fast two-day shipping.”

These salsas are ideal for any occasion and Maharba demonstrates several creative ways to use them in making fast, healthy and tasty meals at Salsa Queen now ships a variety of 5-pack options via 2-day FedEx across the U.S. Not only is this ideal for individuals, but businesses are finding this a unique corporate gift solution that is a much healthier option than chocolate, cookies, or candies.

For more information about Zapata or to order your Salsa Queen selection, visit


Central 9th
Tess Arneson writes about all the ongoings and urban redevelopment in this increasingly trendy nieighborhood

Cuisine Unlimited uses the state:
Kathy Stephenson writes about a legal wrangling over the concessions arrangement at the Eccles Theatre:

The Daily
Kathy Stephenson takes a look at Ryan Lowder’s (Copper Onion etc) latest opening, a downtown bakery/cafe:

Dine O’Round
The Deseret News looks at some of the better options on this years Dine O’Round menus:

Recently announced the update of their online e-shop service to now include delivery. That means you can have a Harmons staffer now pick your order from the shelves (a service I’ve used to pick up at store to great success) and also have it delivered to your door. Note, it ain’t cheap!

Local, global

Restaurant deals and coupons

If you’re looking for more deals and discounts, here are a few of the more popular/best offers on local discount sites right now:

Del Mar Al Lago – 41% off
Itto Sushi Midvale – 38% off
Itto Sushi downtown SLC – 38% off

Food talk

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