Do I dare contend with City Weekly’s Ted’s Top 100 Restaurant Guide that was featured this week? Absolutely YES. Why? Because out of the 100 restaurants Ted listed, I had been to 42 – and he did not list all the restaurants I had visited – so I think I know what I’m talking about 😉
First of all, the list is not terrible. He certainly gave credit where deserved. However, I got the impression, as I thumbed through the pages, that Ted’s big attempt in this year’s guide was to include a wider range of restaurants geographically (Park City, Logan, Ogden, Provo) rather than compiling an accurate list of truly exceptional and unique restaurants (somewhat reminiscent of the Academy Awards). I felt that in that attempt he failed to give credit to other more deserved Salt Lake City restaurants, and also displayed a lack of knowledge for restaurants in other cities if they were not located in fancy Park City.
Ted certainly gave himself an escape by adding a disclaimer at the beginning of his guide explaining that the guide was not perfect, and that he had not even been to half of the restaurants listed on city weekley’s website.
I thought it was a cop-out and rather mundane of a list. Sure, he gave Forage a #1, and listed Tin Angel, Finn’s, Eva, Copper Onion, Pizzaria 712, Freida Bistro, etc. – all my favorite places, but does the guy only eat steak and noodles? Also does he not dine West of I-15?
Cafe Trio and Sapa in highlighted boxes though? Really? Cafe Trio is tasty but just barely a step above Olive Garden in my opinion and Sapa should not even have a sushi bar – I’m sorry, I met the owners and they were really nice but the food I felt were sub-par. Furthermore why were all these Ski resort and national chain restaurants like Ruth’s Chris (that all serve the same steak and seafood menu in varying rendition) on the list but not small locally-owned restaurants like Cafe Niche and Les Madeleines that support use of organic/locally-grown produce and entertain a higher quality menu?
Here are some restaurants I think the Restaurant Guide missed – and therefore was a more of a Restaurant Flop.
- Cafe Niche – as stated in two other previous blogs, Cafe Niche astounds me with every visit. Quiche to die for.
- Les Madeleines – as stated in other blog, probably the best lunch you will have in town.
- Myung Ga – the best Korean restaurant in town that makes Sundubu with tofu made fresh everyday.
- Park Cafe – they should be on the list just for their Chili. They deserve the best Chili in the State Award.
- Tastey Thai – hands down the best Thai food in salt lake. Their papaya salad is always so fresh, and their soups/curries are light and not overly flavored or too thick like may Thai restaurants tend to become to adjust to the American palette.
- Bohemian Brewery – the Czech brewery that is holding down the fort in Sandy with the most delicious Sunday brunch!
- Foundry Grill – the most important trip you will ever make down to Utah County. Their food deserves 6 stars on a 5 star scale.
- Epic Casual Dining – also holding down the fort in Sandy. If you ever get to try their seasonal veggies grown in their own garden, you will probably turn vegetarian.
- Pho Hoa – How can one live without eating real Pho??
- Windy Ridge – their soups served in metal pots straight from the stove are a necessity in the winter.
- Sam Hawk – the other Korean restaurant that makes the best Bibimpop in a strip mall next to a coin laundry in Provo. My parents from Japan (who are extremely hard to please with food) will eat there.
These are just to name a few. I think John Saltas needs to refer all City Weekly readers to this guy – Gastronomicslc.com – OR CALL ME! for real food reviews!!