At Mo’s Place, diners dig into timeless American dishes and tear apart smoky barbecue fare on the weekends. The breakfast rib-eye steak with eggs and hash browns fills bellies for the day ahead, and the lunchtime double BLT sports three pieces of toast, six strips of bacon, and more tomatoes than the home garden of a vegetable archivist. On Friday and Saturday nights, the eatery stays open late to serve smoked meats, barbecue sandwiches, and hot wings.
Crisp breezes blow off the creek that cuts through River Restaurant's backyard, somersaulting through patio windows into the loft-like main dining room. There, amid leather furniture and a sleek metal staircase, diners dig into Mediterranean-style kebabs and orzo, or gently unwrap morsels of feta from grape leaves. Owner and chef Darin Byrd has his staff keep things simple with fresh ingredients and classic recipes for his menu of Mediterranean and American fare. Rivers Restaurant also hosts catered events, with capacity for 40 people sitting, 75 standing, or unlimited seating for parties willing to don water wings and float in the river.
Thai Garden Restaurant's chefs carefully spice a menu of Thai cuisine awarded Best Southeast Asian fare by Salt Lake magazine in 2006 and 2007. In the dining room, ornate wood dividers stand stark against exposed brick, displaying intricate carvings of animals, workers, and Judd Nelson with fist triumphantly raised. Floor-to-ceiling front windows cast light on dishes of chicken, beef, pork, or tofu coated in flavors such as red curry and spicy Thai basil sauce, and customized to one of five levels of spice. Classic pad thai and pan-fried flat noodles conveniently fill entree-shaped voids in diners' stomachs with fresh sprouts, meatballs, and ground peanuts.
CousCous Mediterranean's owner and chef Nick Shams handcrafts a healthy menu of Mediterranean-inspired dishes. Diners can prime bellies with a small house salad drizzled in the restaurant's signature lemon-basil dressing or a healthy side, such as the wheat- and gluten-free garbanzo chips. To activate the brain's seafood receptors, taste buds dive into a bowl of lemony shrimp scampi or a cheesy seafood bake, which pits marinara-varnished salmon and shrimp against tendrils of angel-hair pasta. The Mediterranean burrito's couscous, refried garbanzo beans, yogurt-dill sauce, and ground lamb form a delicate fusion of culinary styles, and a selection of 10-inch gourmet flatbreads support sundry toppings, from a simple blend of two cheeses to a garden-ransacking spread of mushrooms, sweet peppers, fresh basil, and ceramic geese in bonnets. Diners can supplement each entree with a medium-size beverage and seal them into stomachs with a delectable dessert.
With faux-stucco walls, arched doorways, and warm, golden light, Roma Ristorante’s dining room seems to transport diners into the picturesque confines of a Tuscan-countryside villa. The scene is set for the main event: waiters transport festive Italian dishes such as manicotti noodles stuffed with ricotta and parmesan cheeses or sautéed chicken wrapped in a prosciutto bow. Lighter fare includes crisp salads and soup that's made fresh daily.
The potation crafters at Beans & Brews Coffee House whip up hot and cold beverages from perk-proffering coffee beans, relaxing tea leaves, and sweet decaf alternatives. Hot coffee drinks, such as the cappuccino ($3.60 for 12 oz.) or eye-opener brew ($2.80 for 12 oz.) gently jolt the brain awake with mountain-roasted goodness, and the dulcet notes of iced chai ($4.10 for 16 oz.) and B&B frappes ($4.05 for 16 oz.) cool off summer-scorched palates with their sweet, icy taste. Roasters get the most out of each coffee bean with Beans & Brews’ trademark high-altitude roasting, which imparts each batch of grounds with a smooth flavor that, like an angst-riddled teddy bear, maintains a high level of complexity.