Just off Foothill Dr. towards the University of Utah is one of the greatest food experiences in Salt Lake. For many years, Red Butte Cafe and Bakery was in the shadow (literally but not in taste or experience) of TGI Fridays as they shared a building. Fridays was upstairs and Red Butte was downstairs. For anyone passing by on Foothill Dr., you would never see it unless you were looking for it. Fridays had all the frontage and exposure. The processed, microwavable food served upstairs could never compete with the fresh, delicious food downstairs; So much so that Fridays is now closed.
Why does this make me happy? It wasn't likely that I would go to Fridays anyway so why should I be concerned? Because it's now easier to get a parking space for Red Butte Cafe in an already crowded Foothill Village Shopping Center.
Rachel had the great idea last Friday of dropping Ruby off at her Sister's house so we could go out to eat. We did ask her Sister's permission beforehand. It had been a long time since we had been to Red Butte and it sounded delicious. Rachel was already giddy about the steak sandwich.
The restaurant was crowded but with a party of 2, we were seated in 15 minutes. Reviewing the menu only took about 2 minutes. Rachel was definitely going with the Herb Marinated Top Sirloin Sandwich. It's served open faced on Fococcia Bread with Crimini Mushrooms, Caramelized Mushrooms, Gorgonzola, and Basil Aioli. I will have to take Rachel's word that it was delicious. She put a piece of sandwich for me to taste on my salad plate. When I was finished with my dish, I looked down and it was gone. I took too long!
I can tell you for certain however, that the Beer Battered Fish Tacos were wonderful. They are served with Jalapeno Remoulade, Roasted Salsa, Cabbage, Black Beans and Spanish Rice. A Remoulade is a mayonnaise based sauce. The Chefs here don't hold back when the add the Jalapeno. You had better have a large glass of water nearby. Each bite of taco requires at least 2 swigs of water.
Each taco is served with a hearty amount of fish wrapped in 2 corn tortillas. The Salsa has a sweet, addictive bite to it. I was becoming obsessed with figuring out what ingredient was in that "bite." No luck but no problem; this is a great reason to return. Only way to make it better: crispier tortillas. They fall apart very quickly.
Another reason to return is to try every item on the dessert menu. The Bakery has definitely become a larger part of their business. How do any of the following sound: Three Layer Chocolate Cake, Bourbon Pecan Pie, European Cheesecake, Fresh Fruit Tart, Turtle Cheesecake, White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake, Chocolate Decadence, Chocolate Aztec Tart, Seasonal Fruit Poppy Seed Cake, Orange Chocolate Mousse Cake? I can hear myself gaining weight but also gaining happiness.
We were going to get some dessert but the waiter never returned. We already had the check so we paid up front and picked up Ruby. As Rachel was describing the goodness of the individual ingredients in her sandwich she asked: "What more could you ask for, chocolate?" After eating at Red Butte Cafe and Bakery, there isn't much more you could ask for.
Happy Eating and a Happy 2012 to all.