Here’s the wrap from this month’s DABS meeting held on September 28th. In terms of new businesses awarded licenses it was a relatively subdued affair – the commission in effect hamstrung by a scarcity of licenses.
Full service restaurant licenses (beer, wine, liquor)
Coming into September’s meeting thirty full service licenses were available in Utah; this a number that the commission confirmed as still low enough to demand they follow their ready to open doctrine; which is to say, don’t expect your liquor license unless you can leave the meeting and open the door the same day. Two restaurants nabbed a full service license; Hamachi expanding on their original downtown SLC location with a new outpost in Lehi, as well as Italian restaurant Matteo in Salt Lake City.
As part of public comment at the end of the meeting, El Cholo made a last ditch appeal for a license. This then the 100 year old LA restaurant group that is seeking to open in Sugar House (just next door to the Smith’s). Representatives for the business had hoped to attend this month’s meeting ready to go – but last minute snags meant they are still a few more days out. Commissioners stuck to their guns, demurring to the pleas, but instead, offering the option of a special meeting in the coming days to address the matter.
- El Cholo, Salt Lake City, October
- The Notch Pub, Kamas, October
- Canyon Steak and Waffle, Moab, October
- WildFin American Grill, Farmington, November
- Root’d Cafe, Riverton, October
- Piko Mexican Grill, Salt Lake City, November
- STK Steakhouse, Salt Lake City, November
- Scelto, Salt Lake City, December
- Tip Top Club, Salt Lake City, January 2024
Eleven bar licenses were available coming into the meeting, with a further additional license expected in October due to state population increases. The sole winner this month was Kemo Sabe located in Park City.
- Last Call Sports Bar & Grill, Springville, September
- Etta Place Cidery, Torrey, October
- El Moab Hotel, Moab, October
- Aker Restaurant and Lounge, Salt Lake City, October
- Neptune’s Palace, Salt Lake City, November
- Marquis, Park City, November
- Thieves Guild, Salt Lake City, January 2024
- Repeal, Salt Lake City, January 2024
Limited service restaurant licenses (beer, wine)
Hacienda Jalisco Mexican Food, Vernal
Downtown SLC’s Hyatt Regency was approved for a Type 4 license, which should mean room service drinks for the fancy hotel – something that has been oddly missing since their opening. Meanwhile Hammer Spring Distillers were granted a Type 5 license.
Speaking of Type 5s as part of the September meeting, the DABS confirmed the department’s administrative fees to manufacturers might drop from 5% to 3% (subject to approval in the next legislative session). Discussions between commissioners surfaced the fact that there are currently 79 Type 5s in Utah generating some $16 million in yearly sales.
If you’re unfamiliar Type 5s are package agencies that sell direct to the public from their manufacturing site (brewers, distillers and the like). Most interesting was Steve Handy’s question to staff asking “[do Type 5s] incur the same standard markup that a wholesaler would incur?” (47:01). Staff confirmed (47:26) that no markup is presently charged and per a previous audit several months back – this was being reviewed. It was a blink and miss it moment, but potentially important news down the line for local makers.
Other Utah liquor news from local producers
Dented Brick awarded duo of gold medals
Via press release
The Greatest Snow on Earth would logically have to equate to the greatest water on Earth, right? At Dented Brick® Distillery that certainly is the case.
This month the distillery was awarded two gold medals from USA Spirit Ratings competition for two of their specialty whiskeys: Limited Edition Barrel Finished Straight Rye Whiskey and Bottled in Bond in the USA Straight Rye Whiskey. This spirit competition rates according to quality, value, and packaging and is judged by a panel of top experts in the field of craft spirits.
First up, Dented Brick®’s Limited Edition Barrel Finished Straight Rye Whiskey won a 90 point rating. What makes this spirit so sensational? Not only is it made from their already award winning premium grain-to-glass rye whiskey, it’s laid to rest after its initial aging process in a former Cabernet Sauvignon barrel. Why wine you ask? To impart an even richer, more unique secondary finish than the rye whiskey alone. Notes of stone fruit, smoke, and spices accompany fine red wine. For the wine and whiskey lover alike, this whiskey is worth the trip down to the distillery to buy a bottle of your own.
Next up, Dented Brick®’s Bottled in Bond Straight Rye Whiskey also won gold with a 90 point rating. Bottled in Bond is a less common way of making whiskey, with unmatched quality control and a longer aging process. In pre prohibition times, rules and regulations were very loose and the process of making whiskey could be somewhat dangerous. Tobacco, glycerin, even formaldehyde, among other dangerous substances were used to influence the flavor and color of whiskey. The Bottled in Bond Act of 1897 was instated as quality control (as well as a tax incentive) to protect people from consuming these harmful substances.
To qualify for the title of Bottled in Bond, the whiskey must be made by one distiller, in one distillery, within one distilling season. It must also be aged four years (not the standard two) in a federally bonded warehouse and bottled at 100 proof (50% ABV). To contrast, it’s common for other whiskeys to be made with a combination of spirits from multiple barrels from multiple distributors, and is normally bottled at 80 proof (40% ABV).
No wonder it’s a feat to produce such a specific, highly controlled type of whiskey! And, because of its longer aging process, the flavors and aromas are more nuanced than the average whiskey, boasting notes of cinnamon, clove, pepper, caramel, and brown sugar. The finish is long with more spice, smoke, and a thick texture.This bottle is surely to be a conversation starter at your next backyard party or dinner with friends from out of town.
Dented brick release
Via press release
There has been an exciting development in the specialty spirits landscape: The only glittered spirit to be registered as a trademark. Quite possibly the only glittered spirit to exist at all!
Proudly presenting: Dented Brick® Distillery’s Glitter Disco-Nut®. A specialty spirit consisting of rum, natural coconut flavor, and you guessed it, glitter. A party in a glass! Dented Brick® Distillery deserves this shining distinction after working hard over the last three years to not only perfect the formula, but the name, label and reputation as well.
With the acquisition of a registered trademark for this spirited spirit, Dented Brick® Distillery further solidifies its dedication to producing high-quality, boundary-pushing, smooth and tasty spirits. This particularly unique spirit, along with many of their other spirits, puts Dented Brick on the map for craft distilleries to watch out for.
The registered trademark for Glitter Disco-Nut® ensures Dented Brick® Distillery’s exclusive rights to the name, protecting it from unauthorized use by competitors. This recognition adds an extra layer of security to the brand and guarantees bragging rights for the distillery. Glitter Disco-Nut® can be purchased at the distillery store in Salt Lake City, Utah, state liquor stores in Utah, or online for select states. Stay sparkly!
RoHa Brewing latest releases
Via brewers newsletter
We have a pile of them! Somehow our current draft ended up with eight beers that are only available at RoHa, which means we have a great selection of small batch new stuff that you have to come try!!! We put out a couple nice seasonal releases, including this ever famous Pumpkin Black. Here is the Role Call!
Pumpkin Black a seasonal favorite, as a limited release, this beer is filled with plenty of pumpkin spice and roasty warmth. Pours a nice deep brown, and drinks too easy. Enjoy with a pumpkin cookie if you can handle it.
Bumpy Pucker Raspberry Sour: Its harvest season, and you know that means this bright fruit forward sour is ready to go. Has a slight pink appearance in the glass, bright raspberry aromas and a balanced sour flavor. Drink it till its gone!
Gemini Seltzers (new Flavors):
Cucumber Key Lime: Refreshing cucumber aromas followed by light Key Lime sweetness. Like a like a key lime pie – only with fewer calories 😉
Raspberry Lemon Zest: Bright raspberry flavors balanced with a hint of lemon zest bitters. Releasing next week, stay tuned!
Freshies Porter (formerly Project Porter): Same liquid that everyone knows and loves, new name and package. We love the roasty chocolate notes on this beer. Given its balance and depth from an addition of molasses, this winter warmer is sure to please. Best enjoyed after riding some freshies! Releasing early October
Skippers Delight Amber Lager: You have been asking for some malty beers, and this one is a perfect addition to the line-up. Pours a nice deep amber with a redish hue. Sips with a rich malt profile while remaining light on the palate. A fan favorite on the patio for those cool bluegrass nights.
Lighthouses Rule Hazy (foggy) IPA: A unique yeast strain brings out the true colors and flavors of this amazing Citra and Mosaic IPA. A classic combo for a session IPA. Dank hop aromas, light fruit flavors from the fermentation, and a smooth sipping hazy.
Brewers Select: Tactical Fanny Pack Double Hazy IPA: A hazy double IPA that fits perfectly in the bonus pocket of a Tactical Fanny Pack. Leave your keys behind as you float through the mouth watering flavors of sweet orange rind, and mango. The soft mouthfeel allows all the flavor of the hop before the mild bitterness cuts in to remind you that this is still an IPA. Pine resin on the nose and finish. Featuring tons of Hang ’em High “Bergamot” hops.
Strata off the Vine Wet Hopped IPA: This session IPA features a whole SCHLODE of fresh from the farm Strata Hops. Harvested one day, dumped in the kettle the next. Wet hopped beers are only available once a year, and bring a wonderful earthy, grassy, dang aroma to our beer. This releases Thursday 9/21 at noon at RoHa.
Hodge Podge Local Wet Hopped Pale Ale: Why have one wet hopped beer when you could have two! Several of our regulars mentioned that they have hops growing in their yards or gardens, so we assembled this Hodge Podge of locally grown hop flowers, and brewed a very limited release beer – a beer from the community, for the community! Releases early October, stay tuned!
Via company newsletter
Hopsters – Available Now. Hopsters IPA is a modern twist on the classic west coast style IPA. Using Amarillo, Centennial, and Magnum hops, this behemoth of a beer will engulf your tastebuds with flavor. It will start hitting several liquor stores across the state just in time for spooky season! Hopsters is available at Epic Brewing for $2.05 per can.
Double Cross Ale – Available Now. Another spooktacular beer just hit our shelves! Double Cross was brewed to be as smooth and drinkable as possible. This beer enjoys long walks at the gulag, fangs, and daydreaming about creepy graveyards. Double Cross Ale is available at Epic Brewing for $2.75 per can
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Hi, I’m Stuart, nice to meet you! I’m the founder, writer and wrangler at Gastronomic SLC. I’m a multiple-award winning journalist and have written in myopic detail about the Salt Lake City dining scene for the better part of seventeen years.
I’ve worked extensively with multiple local publications from Visit Salt Lake to Salt Lake Magazine, not least helped to consult on national TV. Pause those credits, yep, that’s me! I’m also a former restaurant critic of more than five years, working for the Salt Lake Tribune. I’m largely fueled by a critical obsession with rice, alliteration and the use of big words I don’t understand. What they’re saying about me: “Not inaccurate”, “I thought he was older”, “I don’t share his feelings”.
Want to know more? This is why I am the way I am.
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