Restaurants + Cocktails

Restaurants, bars, and other service industry businesses remain a focal point for those trying to minimize the pandemic damage done to cities across the country, and, locally we’ve seen plenty of innovative initiatives geared towards helping out SLC’s food scene; Organizations like Tip Your Server and Support Utah Dining have provided crucial resources to local spots around the city and state. For our part, we’ve tried to highlight the bevy of excellent fare available around the city while also encouraging our readers to patronize their favorite spots by purchasing gift cards, takeout, and merchandise. Restrictions and general wariness about eating out forced us to alter our approach to covering food and restaurants, but we were still able to bring you the low-down on some top-notch spots in 2020. Keep in mind, the below stories represent a small fraction of the local spots that make our city so special, and we encourage those with the means to do so to continue supporting our chefs, servers, bartenders, and dishwashers where they can.

A culinary year in review...

1) Yoko Ramen: If ever there was a year for a hearty, soul-warming bowl of ramen, it’s this one. Every item on Yoko’s menu is worth ordering at least once and keep an eye out for their specials—over the best 6 months, they’ve been bonkers good.

2) Oquirrh: Chef Andrew and GM Angelena Fuller cut their teeth at some of the city’s best dining spots before venturing out on their own, so it should come as no surprise that Oquirrh delivers handily where both flavor and service are concerned. Plus, we can’t think of a better dish to get us all through what is hopefully the last leg of this pandemic than their confit chicken pot pie.

3) Five5eeds: We finally got around to covering this preeminent Park City spot toward the beginning of the year and it delivered. Quality ingredients and bright flavors define the fare while the decor borrows heavily from the laid-back vibes to be found down under. Fingers crossed that their back to packed Sunday brunch service resumes soon.

4) Mom’s Kitchen: This mom-run spot serves up some of the best Taiwanese and Chinese food in the city. Every dish on the menu is prepared with care and the portions are generous enough to ensure leftovers for days to come.

5) Afghan Kitchen: If you’re in need of a good-for-the-soul fare, Afghan Kitchen is as safe a bet as any. Every dish here is packed with bright, aromatic flavors that are expertly balanced and incredibly delicious.

6) Salt City Kitchen: One of a number of intriguing local meal delivery services that have popped up since the pandemic began, Salt City Kitchen is a healthy and delicious way to take meal prep off your proverbial plate once a week.

7) Top 7 Vegan Spots: The importance of health, both on an individual and on a global level, came into sharp focus in 2020. Our list of stellar vegan eateries around the city is a perfect place to start for those looking to capitalize on the benefits of going plant-based.

8) Our Go-To Takeout Recommendations: When the history books are written, takeout will have a substantial role to play in the telling of 2020. It gave restaurants a lifeline through the worst of the pandemic and offered those of us trapped at home a much-needed psychological boost in the form of fare from our otherwise shut-down favorites. And all that is to say nothing of the many wonderful micro-businesses that began serving everything from shrubs to Bismarck-style donuts over the last nine months. Bookmark this one: it's updated frequently. 

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