In Salt Lake City recently
If you haven't been to this site recently, it is worth a look: http://www.gastronomicslc.com
We went to Forage, Log Haven, Pago, Eva and Les Madeleines, Red Iguana and Leatherby's
Forage was terrific; fantastic creativity and flavor combinations. Great upscale restaurant without being too spendy. Only complaint is that the portions are smaller than I'd really like. Left me hungry, but then we headed out to Leatherby's for ice cream and that solved that problem!! They also waived our corkage fees because we brought in some nice bottles and let the staff try a little sip. That is always a plus in my favor.
Leatherby's is a dive diner, but has homemade ice cream and sauces with gigantic portions, reasonably priced. Ice cream lovers need to give it a try, but again, expect the dive diner ambiance!
Really enjoyed Pago; nice place and while not on the same level as Forage (or the same price), you can tell they put the food together with care. We sat at the bar, which was great because you can watch the kitchen staff cook and assemble the plates all night. It was terrific fun. The wine guy has eclectic taste, which I also like. Nice to have some creativity in the wine list. Would definitely go back.
Went to Eva but late at night. Weren't serving dinner anymore, only the bar menu. Still, was good food. Would be interested in trying dinner sometime, based on what we had. Bad thing: sitting outside on a hot summer night is a mistake. Surrounded by brick walls, radiating the heat of the day back at you with no airflow was not good. Also, the neighborhood is a bit seedy after dark.
Log Haven sounds better than it is. Even the view was described as better than it actually was. There is better for that price range. Not bad, just a little something missing from the food. My bison was tough, my friends salmon was dry, the chili soup too spicy, etc. They did only charge us corkage on half our bottles however. Again, a plus.
Red Iguana is decent Mexican food, but only if you order the mole or something else you can't get everywhere. If you order carne asada, it is nothing special, so think outside the box. Great thing about this place is that it is near Leatherby's.
Les Madeleines is a good French bakery. They failed my usual yardstick (croissants) but hey, who passes outside of France? Almost no one. Anyway, you must have a "Kouing Aman" if you are ever in Salt Lake City. Take croissant dough. Slather it in additional butter, cover it in caramelized sugar and bake to crispy, gooey goodness. Heavenly!
We were in the city for a convention. If you are a convention planner -- the Grand America hotel had the best banquet food we've ever had, and we have been to a lot of convention banquets