The chefs at Flying Sumo slice up sushi and traditional Japanese plates and handcraft sushi rolls into piquant, kelp-swaddled morsels. The menu teems with epicurean Asian fare such as the teriyaki bowls, surfeited in chunks of chicken or steak, swirled in teriyaki sauce and vegetables, and piled atop a plateaus of rice ($15–$19). The yakisoba noodles blend stir-fried pacific pasta with chicken or steak and sautéed vegetables ($15–$19), and a plethora of specialty rolls showcase designs such as the Hawaii Five-O, with crab, cucumber, broiled eel, avocado, and roasted macadamias ($15). The Chuck Norris kicks taste buds with tempura shrimp, crab, and jalapeño, draped in yellowtail and served to the soundtrack of a home-fitness infomercial ($15) .
Fresh spring rolls neatly line a plate. Curry clings to cubes of tofu. Swirls of heat escape from a heap of pad thai, and the aroma of mango fish wafts through the air. The diversity of the 100 items on Café Trang's eclectic menu secured the Zagat-rated eatery the title of Best Vietnamese on Salt Lake City Weekly's Best of Utah list in 2011. But large quantities don't mean low quality—delicate notes such as lemon and curry flavor the more than one dozen chicken dishes, and walnut shrimp gain subtle texture with a sweet honey glaze. A menu key that denotes the spiciness of each meal helps heat-averse patrons avoid burnt tongues and suddenly ashen chopsticks.
Stepping into The Sweet Tooth Fairy shop is like walking into another era: round tables and high-backed chairs surround an old-fashioned soda fountain, and oldies music plays softly nearby. Pale-blue walls and white crown molding stand behind a glass case full of sweet treats, which are baked daily and earned proprietor Megan Faulkner Brown two appearances on The Rachael Ray Show—one when she was still baking in her basement kitchen, and the next three years later, when her business had grown to nine locations.
Megan uses the "most ordinary" ingredients to whip up her extraordinary pastries, which include chocolate-chip and iced oatmeal cookies, brownies, lemon bars, and a variety of cupcakes and full-grown cakes. Signature cakebites don coats of chocolate or white chocolate flecked with sprinkles. Flavors of baked goods rotate monthly, with some favorites available on a daily basis. Gluten-free options are available, as are frosting shots designed to save time usually spent licking every drop of frosting off the top of a full-size cake.
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.
Captain Len’s sailboat set his life on a new course. One of his crew members caught a salmon and, on the spot, Len mixed together an improvised yet surprisingly tasty rub for the fish. As he’s sailed the world, Captain Len has added more recipes and techniques to his culinary repertoire, readying him to open Capt. Lens City Barbecue. The menu revolves around a full range of barbecued meats, including smoked chicken, pulled pork, baby back ribs, and texas beef brisket, which the restaurant’s staff smokes for up to 14 hours.
Southwestern flavors—spicy ones, namely—marry traditional Mexican dishes on the menu at Bandidos Border Grill. Fresh jalapenos jolt the carne asada, grilled peppers accompany the fajitas, and the eatery's signature salsa tops burritos so large that local farmers have stood them up and used them as structurally unsound silos. But when it comes to structural integrity, the restaurant's exposed cobblestone surrounds guests as they sample savory meats rolled inside tortillas—shrimp, barbacoa, and slow-cooked pork to name a few. Visits to Bandidos Border Grill might conclude with traditional Mexican desserts such as flan and ice cream.