When it came time for the team at Johnny Carino’s to come up with some new recipes, they began rifling through their personal cooking histories. Executive chef Chris Peitersen took his first kitchen job at a barbecue joint when he was 14, so he was primed to create italian baby back ribs. By infusing brown sugar barbecue sauce with balsamic vinegar imported from Modena, he’s given the marinade a more acidic bite than typical barbecue sauces. As the ribs slowly roast and char on an oak grill, he bastes on his creation before finishing the dish with a dusting of parmesan.
The ribs are one of Carino’s many menu items that follow the restaurants’ approach of classic Italian preparations modified by forward-thinking flavor combinations. Diners will find a Black Angus burger capped with mozzarella and fried pepperoni, or sautéed tilapia spiced with garlic and jalapeño. Other signature dishes include the 16-layer lasagna, Skilletinis that sizzle with spaghetti and a choice of meat, and tiramisu made from scratch.
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.
Inside Maurilio's Italian Cuisine’s kitchen, chefs waltz from pans of sautéing shrimp and pots of boiling ravioli to sizzling slabs of grilled steak. Out in the dining room, servers choreograph an equally complex routine as they deliver homemade pizzas and hearty plates of chicken parmesan to tables cloaked in red-and-white-checkered cloths. Surrounding these charming table settings, earth-toned walls showcase framed prints of the bucolic landscapes and dystopian cyborg uprisings that have made Italy famous. As guests delight in these Italian feasts, bartenders pour beer and wine and concoct mixed drinks at Maurilio's full bar.
India Fusion restaurant offers authentic Indian cuisine in a colorful and lively setting. The menu offers sizzling kebabs, fresh from the tandoor ($13.99–$14.99), and golden pillows of naan ($1.99¬–$3.49) to sop up sauces and flip over halfway through the night for that refreshing cool underside. Vegetarian options include mattar paneer (homemade cheese in a spiced curry sauce with peas, $10.99) and those flaky pods of pure pea-potato perfection, samosas, for $3.99. The ever-popular buffet runs $8.99 for lunch and $12.99 for dinner. A list of "domestic fusion" options say a friendly "hello" to cumin newbies with mac and cheese ($4.99), chicken fingers ($4.99), and an assortment of Indian-inspired wraps served with fries ($6.99–$7.99). But above all these dishes lies India Fusion's list of nine curries—each one bursts with the aromatic flavors of ginger, garlic, coconut, onion and more ($10.99-$15.99). Tender cuts of chicken, lamb, and beef, which all taste like they were born in the sauce and nursed to maturity on bottles of vindaloo, korma, and ticca massala.
The team at Sub Zero Ice Cream, winner of State's Best Ice Cream for the past four years, creates delectable desserts using a flash freeze process, which minimizes the formation of flavorless ice crystals and preserves the cream’s savory smoothness. Patrons may choose from a menu of more than 30 flavors or compose original tongue symphonies by blending any two flavors together ($3.39–$5.39). Create a sugary stroke of genius by first choosing the cream base, available in premium ice cream, low-fat ice cream, custard, yogurt, soy, rice, or almond, followed by adding combinations, mix-ins, and specifying texture. The skilled ice wizards then speak the appropriate incantations to flash freeze the mixture with liquid nitrogen at -321 degrees Fahrenheit, the substance used by NASA to preserve precious moon pies.
Ever since Barbacoa Mexican Grill opened in 1998, ordering a meal has turned into a creative pursuit. At the fingertips of everyone who walks in the door is an edible artist's palette that they draw upon as they orchestrate the creation of their dream burrito, burrito bowl, or tacos. Inspiration begins with a foundation: hand-trimmed barbacoa beef slow cooked in a chipotle paste, shredded pork with roasted pineapple and a honey glaze, or even steamed vegetables. Then a rainbow of salsas, a choice of beans, and individually monogrammed grains of rice combine to create a fully personalized meal.
Now spread throughout Utah, Barbacoa Mexican Grill has also branched out beyond its inimitable meals. It strives to establish and strengthen communities by working with local nonprofit and charitable organizations. The primary focus of the restaurants' grassroots endeavors falls on the promotion of healthy, active lifestyles and the support of underserved children—evidenced by their cooperation with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah.