Sunday, August 22, 2010
My Food Adventures While On Vacation in Utah!
I went on a road trip to Utah for a close friend of ours wedding.
On the way to Utah we had to make a stop at Cabela's on the way in Reno, NV. It just happened to also be lunch time. Cabela's has a restaurant/grill in the store. They have things like, fried cheese curds, onion rings, fries, burgers, brats, salads, sandwich's, soups and kids meals. Some of the meat items that you can get are buffalo, venison and beef. We went to the grill and I ordered a buffalo burger....it was really good and it was very big. Buffalo meat usually comes from Montana. It is really tender, has very little fat and I think it has a better flavor than beef. My sister Rylee (the basic eater) had a kids meal which was a crustable PB&J that came with a snack pack of apple sauce and a drink. My mom had a grilled chicken sandwich and we shared a few onion rings. After finishing up at Cabela's....I also bought some of the best buffalo jerky that I've ever had. If you're on a road trip and you're going through Reno, I would recommend Cabela's Grill. It's quick and very clean and the food is better than a fast food restaurant.
After a long drive, we arrived in Utah. One of the best things about Utah is that people who live there get Winder Farms Dairy delivered to their door. This is the best milk and chocolate milk you'll ever have. Our close family friends, The Shober's, ordered some of the chocolate milk in real glass bottles. The next day was the wedding reception for our friends Nick and Heather. They had grilled hamburgers and hot dogs, different salads, every IBC soda you could think of and pie and ice cream for dessert. It was very fun. All the people in Utah are very nice.
We ended up staying for a week longer than we planned. My dad flew in one-way as a surprise and spent the rest of the time with us. My close friend, Uncle Bobby, took me to Sonic Burger while we were there. They don't have many in California so it was a very great experience for me. I had a Sonic Burger....DELICIOUS and an extra large cherry limeade with special ice in it. We spent another day touring the Temple Square in Salt Lake City (SLC). You have to have a temple recommendation to go in it and you have to be Mormon so I did not get to go in it. But we still got to tour the Mormon Tabernacle, the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and the Conference Center. All of these buildings were amazing. I was very fascinated by the Mormon Religion and their buildings. I had lots of questions. In the Joseph Smith Memorial Building is a cafe called Neauvo Cafe (sp?) We had lunch there. I had a Tomato Asiago Soup with a fresh breadstick. It was very creamy and very good. I talked to the chef there for a bit and gave him one of my business cards. He was a really nice guy.
On another day we hiked at the Brighton/Solitude Ski Resort Area in the Wasatch Mountain Range. The Wasatch Mountains are ginormous and beautiful. At sunset they turn almost purple. That night we went to a Mexican restaurant called The Red Iguana. I heard about this restaurant on the Food Network show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives with Guy Fieri. It is in a dumpy area of Salt Lake City. We had to wait for an hour! There was a line outside the door but the wait was worth it. The interior of the restaurant had autograph pictures of ZZ Top, the Rat Pack, Guy Fieri and lots of other stars, musicians, etc. They also had tons of awards that they had won. This was truly the best Mexican food I have ever had. I had a Carne Asada Burrito with Mole Negro. The burrito was so big that it fell apart so I ate the filling and left the tortilla. The filling had carne asada (grilled steak), tomatoes, salsa, onions, rice and beans...it was very flavorful and the mole negro was AMAZING. It had banana, walnuts, raisins, Mexican chocolate, spices, etc. in the sauce...really different and really good. If you're ever in Salt Lake City, Utah you should definitely go there.
On another day, we tried another place that was on Diner's Drive-Ins and Dive's called Moochies. Moochies is located in kind of a residential area near Liberty Park where you can get fresh spring water from a fountain that comes straight from the Olympic mountain artesian well. My Uncle Bobby grew up in this area and took us for a drive around. Moochies is know for it's Philly Cheesesteak and Meatball Sandwich's. You can get a 6 inch or a 12 inch sandwich. I had a 6 inch Philly Cheesesteak Sandwich with no mushrooms. It had thinly sliced and grilled rib eye steak, grilled red and green peppers, onions and cheese. I love that sandwich! It is very filling and very delicious.
I forgot to tell you about going to this cool waterslide park with our friends the Ingram's. It is a big, awesome waterslide park called Cowabunga Bay. I had so much fun! They dump 12,000 gallon buckets of water on you...and some of the slides were so long that it was pitch black dark in them. It was a blast!!!
In Utah, they have the best grocery store ever called Harmon's. Harmon's is owned by 2 brothers. They built the store in Draper, Utah based on feedback and surveys from around the country on what the "perfect" grocery store would be. This store has 2 levels. The first level is the grocery store and the 2nd level they offer cooking classes and a lounge that you can sit and eat at. They have a gelato bar, a pizza oven, a sushi bar, an awesome deli, a salad bar, olive bar, a bakery and they sell Winder Dairy Farms milk....which is the best.
On another night...our friends Bree and Mike invited us over for dinner. They were in Alaska and had caught a boat load of halibut! They asked if I would want to cook dinner for them. So I did. I made poached halibut with a butter and white wine sauce, steamed carrots and homemade cesear salad. All of this I learned from Chef Roger of La Gare Restaurant. It turned out really good! The only thing that I was missing was some vermouth for the butter sauce and anchovies for the cesear. Bree let me use a the cheek part of the halibut which is supposed to be a delicacy. It was a great night at their house and I had so much fun cooking. She even had white pepper and shallots...I was very impressed!
This was one of the best Utah trips I've ever been on. I liked all the restaurants we went to, but most of all, the best part was hanging out with our friends. I am very thankful for them and I'm really happy for the new married couple, Nick and Heather. I can't wait to go back...to go skiing!