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14 Best Restaurants In Salt Lake City You Must Try

14 Best Restaurants In Salt Lake City You Must Try

Looking for the Best Restaurants In Salt Lake City?

This will be a list of great restaurants you cannot go wrong with on your next visit to Salt Lake.  Consider this list a good starting point for your gastronomic adventure.

A culinary outline of delicious destinations in your search for satisfying and stimulating opportunities of taste and flavor.  Your assignment, should you accept it, is to find as many other wonderful dining destinations as possible.  You can do it!  And your stomach will be infinitely better for it.  Now in my list, I have included some non-traditional choices.

Don’t let that throw you off track. If some of the places on this list are not your bag, Salt Lake City has so many different restaurants that you can easily replace whatever doesn’t fit your bill. In case you haven’t noticed by now, people in Salt Lake love to eat!  So get out there when you’re in town and start the treasure hunt that will please your stomach and your heart. This is the place for good food!

14 Best Restaurants In Salt Lake City – Hidden Gems from a Local

La Caille

La Caille is an upscale French restaurant located on the southwest outskirts of the city in the area known as Sandy.  And when I say upscale, I mean special occasions put on your best suit and tie and be on your best behavior upscale.  When I was in high school this was the go-to place for every high school student in the city on prom night.  And I’m sure it still is.

If you want to really, really, really impress your date, you’ll go here.  It works.  It will set you back a bit.  But you’ll get a great meal that you won’t find anywhere else. It is a great location.  It reminds you of a little cottage on the foot of the Alps, away from the hustle and bustle of the big city.

If it’s winter, bring a jacket.  And you don’t have to speak French, but it sure won’t hurt if you do.  Your date will be impressed.  So splurge a little bit and enjoy.  You’ll definitely remember this one.

La Caille

La Caille/ Facebook

Red Iguana

Red Iguana is an old-school sit-down Mexican restaurant in downtown Salt Lake City.  This wonderful restaurant is on everyone’s list of best restaurants in Salt Lake.  It’s the real deal.  I had mole for the first time here.  I walked in one day and they handed me a menu that was like a secret scroll to a taste paradise.  I saw the mole sample platter and I just had to try it.

When the chocolate mole hit my tongue, my life changed forever.  Needless to say, everyone loves the Red Iguana.  They went and built another location nearby to handle the overflowing, bustling crowds.  So now you won’t wait as long as before.  You’ll probably wait a little bit, though.  This place is very popular.  The food is wonderful, the decor is wonderful, and the wait staff is wonderful.

And yes, the chefs are wonderful, too!  Make sure you make this your first stop when you come to Salt Lake City. And bring your appetite.  You won’t be disappointed.  A lot of places do Mexican cuisine very well.  Red Iguana is the all-time world champion of Mexican food.  And when you walk in, tell them everyone sent you.

See more: Best places to see dinosaurs in Utah

Red Iguana

Red Iguana/ Facebook

Nomad East

Here’s a great place near Hogle Zoo, if you were inclined to visit the cool animals there.  Children love Hogle Zoo. But you can skip the zoo if you’d rather just eat.

Nomad East is a great eatery for artisan pizzas.  And fine wine and beer to go with it.  I love these thin-crust European-style pizzas with all types of different nontraditional toppings on them.  Very hip and very delicious!  You can get tired of the same old, same old pizzas day in and day out.  Come to Nomad East for a refreshing change of scenery and taste.

I’m a huge fan of all things pizza, but I am becoming a super fan of these creative pizzas.  There are pizzas you can order as is. Two of the most popular pizzas they make are the Roni-Boy, featuring pepperoni and jalapeños, and the Basque ‘n Glory, which features Tooele Basque Chorizo.  Wow!  It sounds like perfection.  If you want, you can just make your own pizza.  Pile on the toppings as you wish!  I know what I like.  A little bit of everything.  Some other menu items give you the option of a little variety if it’s just one of those nights.

Nomad East

Nomad East/ Facebook

The Park Cafe

The Park Cafe is a culinary gem right next to Liberty Park, probably the best and most convenient location ever.  Come over for breakfast or lunch and enjoy the cozy atmosphere and the great food.  Nothing fancy here, just old-fashioned quality and taste.

When you come here, make it a point to visit the park that has everything.  An aviary, rides, and of course lots of open space and nature to enjoy.  There is a duck lake that I remember chasing ducks around as a young child.  But I digress.  You can take an after-meal walk around Liberty Park, and it will be the perfect cap for your meal.

The neighborhoods around the park have great energy around them.  Good people with big hearts.  You’ll probably meet a few of them there while you sample the tasty fare of the Park Cafe and enjoy the fresh space of the park.  The best part is that Liberty Park is close to downtown, so it won’t be a hassle to get there.  Bon Appetit, have fun, and despite my history there, please don’t bother the ducks.

The Park Cafe

The Park Cafe/ Facebook

Desert Edge Brewery

Located at the famous and charming Trolley Square close to downtown, the Desert Edge Brewery is a magnet for hungry folks who love good food.  Which means everybody!  Not only are you going to get a great selection of delectable menu items to choose from, but they also brew their own beer.

And this beer is very good.  The flavor and body of these locally crafted beers are something to be awed by. When I go to an independent brewery like this one, I always consider the beer I have with my meal as dessert.  But by all means, don’t miss out on their actual desserts if you want them.

And the great thing about eating in Trolley Square is that you are already in Trolley Square, so you may as well enjoy one of the best high-end malls in Utah.  Trolley Square has a happy and celebratory vibe that gets you in a good mood no matter what kind of day you’ve had.  Make a day of it and you won’t be sorry.  If you feel like staying for a while, they have sports on the big screen televisions to keep you entertained.  Good times!

Siegfried’s Delicatessen:

If you’re in the heart of downtown Salt Lake City and find yourself hankering for some authentic German delicacies, then I have just the place for you.  Siegfried’s Delicatessen is a German deli specializing in all sorts of German goodies. Lots of them.  But while goodies are fine and dandy, you are going to want to try the sausage.  I bought my first authentic bratwurst there.  I still can taste it.  Incredible quality and mouth-watering flavor.  I went there often during my time in Utah.

This is both a restaurant and a shop, so you can take food home with you to cook at your leisure.  Or if you’re starving, stay and eat at the location.  Or have the best of both worlds and do both!  All their traditional German dishes are made from scratch using tried and true German recipes.

And when you bite into something, it really hits the spot.  Germans know how to make good sausage, among other things.  Trust me on this one.  And I’ve eaten enough here to certify Siegfried’s as a true Utah treasure.  And I strongly recommend you give them a try as well.

Iceberg Drive Inn

Now here is one you’re going to love.  This place has the best shakes I have ever eaten.  Yes, I said eaten.  These are also the thickest shakes I have ever seen.  So you won’t be using a straw unless you want your cheeks to cave in permanently.  You will use a spoon.  You can order a soft drink if you want something you can actually drink.  These shakes are works of art.  Any flavor you want.  Mix and match to your heart’s content.  Whatever flavor you get, it will be the best shake ever.  No joke.

They should come with a warning.  Once you have an Iceberg Drive Inn shake, you will be addicted to them from that moment on.  You will crave them at odd moments for the rest of your life.  You’ll dream about them.  And what’s nice about this place is they also serve food.  Nothing fancy here, just the usual drive-in fare.  Burgers and sandwiches.

But you must try the onion rings.  They’re huge.  They are as big as they are tasty.  I call them Jurassic Onion Rings.  And at the risk of being redundant, I consider these onion rings to be the best I’ve ever had as well.  So there you have it.  Try these guys out.  They know what they are doing.  They’ve expanded outside of their original Millcreek area location and opened up franchises throughout Utah, California, and even Arizona.  These guys are good.

Iceberg Drive Inn

Iceberg Drive Inn/ Facebook

Celeste Ristorante

It wouldn’t be a real best restaurant list without an authentic Italian restaurant on it.  Celeste Ristorante is new to the Salt Lake City dining scene.  They opened in 2017, but they’ve already made a big impression on the appetites of hungry Utahns since.  And they’re located close to Murray Park, a landmark oasis enjoyed by generations of Salt Lake residents.

If you have time during the day, I recommend a short walk through the park before you go eat.  Give yourself an hour or two to explore this beautiful park and you won’t regret it.  Besides, it doesn’t hurt to burn a few calories before you eat Italian food.  Because you know you’re going to want to try as many dishes and desserts as you possibly can.

Celeste Ristorante is a culinary paradise that will fill you with great food and happiness.  Kind of like an Italian grandmother.  And don’t be surprised if you start speaking some Italian during your visit.  Superb Italian food always has that effect on me, too.

Celeste Ristorante

Celeste Ristorante/ Facebook

Current Fish And Oyster

Current is another relatively new addition to the Salt Lake City restaurant scene.  Who says Salt Lake City isn’t hip and sophisticated?  You’ll find it here, along with fantastic food that includes fresh and sustainable seafood from all over the country.  Get your seafood fix here and you will be happy-dancing through the streets of downtown Salt Lake.

In under a decade, Current has made a large culinary footprint with urbane Salt Lakers.  But don’t worry if you’re just a regular Joe who loves seafood.  They’ll welcome you with open arms!  The incredible full bar will wet your whistle and whet your appetite at the same time.

And you’ll also be delighted at the variety of non-seafood items on the menu.  The wait staff is incredible; in the big leagues of dining service professionals.  Don’t be afraid to heed their recommendations.  You might make some taste discoveries here.  And don’t be put off by the outward appearance of the property.  It is part of the designed ambiance of the restaurant.  It’s perfection.  You’ll love everything about eating here!

Jack Mormon Coffee

And now for a little coffee break.  Salt Lake is full of fantastic independent coffee shops.  I’m choosing Jack Mormon Coffee for this list because it is a truly great coffee place, and it is in a popular neighborhood in the city.  And the name is pure Utah.  Jack Mormon is a slang term for residents who consider themselves Mormon Church members, but who are not actively participating in formal worshiping.  Inactive Mormons, in other words.  The coffee shop is in the Avenues neighborhood on the north side of town.  It is hip, quaint, and hillier than the rest of the city.

Unless you’re in great shape, don’t try to bike through the Avenues.  Walking is fine, but you will feel the burn tomorrow.  Jack Mormon Coffee delivers on taste and ambiance.  You can sip your brew outside and enjoy the picturesque neighborhood views.

The residents are very friendly and they might just adopt you into the neighborhood if you are there long enough.  If you like coffee, you’ll love Jack Mormons.  And I recommend trying as many independent coffee shops as you can find during your visit.  You’ll be very happy and well-caffeinated.

Jack Mormon Coffee

Jack Mormon Coffee/ Facebook


Sapa has been in Salt Lake City now for just over a decade, and it has already become one of the favorite spots in town to feast on sushi and other Asian cuisines.  While well known for its sushi offerings, it is a fusion restaurant with dishes that represent many Asian cultures.  So in other words, you’re going to have a lot of tasty, healthy choices when you come here.

Situated right in the middle of downtown on State Street, with a very unique appearance, you won’t miss it.  Sushi is the spotlight dish here.  And according to their website, they offer all-you-can-eat sushi rolls Monday through Thursday, 5pm=6:30pm.

So if you can make it at that time, you’re in for a treat.  They have a great selection of rolls so whatever taste you’re into, you’ll find something to tickle your taste buds.  Diners also seem to love the cocktail bar.  If you and your party are in the mood for libations with your meal, you are in the right spot.  Sapa is also known for its excellent service.  And as we all know, service can make or break a dining out experience.  So you definitely should make a beeline to this unique, outrageously delicious restaurant on your next visit to Salt Lake.

Cafe Madrid

Our next pick is in the Holladay area of town, which is one of the nicer neighborhoods in the city.  Cafe Madrid has been a staple there for those who love Spanish food for the last twenty years.  And it is still a special treat to go and eat there.  The ambiance here is incredible.  For diners inside, you get an experience much like eating a family meal in someone’s home on a very special occasion.

If you prefer to eat outside, there is a little courtyard that seems to take you back to a beautiful Spanish village.  I may have had something to drink, but I could have sworn I felt a Mediterranean breeze during a recent visit.  The food here is delicious and unique.

This is a menu you won’t find everywhere.  Especially in Utah.  So you will be pleasantly surprised by the sophistication of the dishes and everything else that goes with it.  They have Tapas specials and Sangria specials depending on what day it is, so check out the online menu or ask your server about them.

If you’re looking for something to do for an hour or so before you eat, take a short drive around the charming neighborhood and check out the views.  You’ll be in the perfect cozy mode by the time you’re seated and served. A hidden gem in SLC for sure.

Cafe Madrid

Cafe Madrid/ Facebook

The Pie Pizzeria

Make sure you catch this wonderful spot before you leave town.  Adjacent to the University of Utah, this is the go-to spot for hungry students from all over the city.  It’s like stepping down into a cavern of cheesy and meaty goodness.  And don’t worry.  There are loads of vegetable toppings as well.  Located in a basement, with brick walls and low lighting, it has the ambiance of a pizza cave.  Well, my friends, it’s time to go spelunking for mouth-watering treasures!

Did I mention that they serve beer?  Yes, they do!  Get a pitcher or a bottle of your favorite brew.  Nothing washes down really good pizza like really cold beer.  You know I’m right.  And what’s special about The Pie, as it’s affectionately referred to by the locals, is that you don’t have to be a student to enjoy the fare.

Come on in, one and all, and dig in!  That big giant pizza isn’t going to make itself disappear!  Just remember, this will fill you up.  You might not want to eat again for a couple of days.

The Pie Pizzeria

The Pie Pizzeria/ Facebook


Of course, there are many more great restaurants in the Beehive State’s capital than just 14 but these are 14 of the best!

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