Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Local Restaurant Review: Station 22

There is just something about having a good local place to eat at, on your own turf, that gives you a sense of pride.  I love having a good place to eat right near home. Half the reason I like local restaurants is the feeling of community and comradely I get when I eat there. The other half being I just like dang good food.

Station 22, the newest sandwich cafe at 22 West Provo Center Street, has stolen my heart because of both of these things.

There is a happy community vibe in their restaurant, and the food is unique and delicious. After going there a few times, I started following their tweets and status updates on facebook, because I love seeing their daily specials, example:

Asian inspired Wich'- Schezwan Pepper Crusted Ahi Tuna~ Ginger, Cucumber Slaw ~ Wasabi Garlic Mayo and all between a warm Ciabatta Roll.

Other days, stuff like this: 
Today we are featuring our delicious Bratwurst; traditional German Bratwurst Sausage, Butter, Bacon, Beer Kraut, Whole Grain Mustard on a Sourdough Hoagie roll. Put your lederhosen on and come down to Station 22, to get in the spirit of Oktober!
Soups Today: Quinoa & Roasted Pepper Soup - Sharp Cheddar Chili.

Falafel special today! Made Egyptian-style with fried potatoes, eggplant, baba ganoush, lettuce, tomato, & our special sauce. Spicy or not!
Today is the Meatloaf Sandwich special! Meatloaf filled with cheddar cheese, wrapped in bacon & served with lettuce & tomatoes on ciabatta.
Battle of the Specials! New favorite, the ultimate Meatloaf Sandwich will be opposed by the Meatball Sandwich in a meaty battle of flavor!
Don't they sound amazing? They look amazing too, check out their facebook album. My brother and I ran over the day they had the Ahi Tuna sandwich, and the following day we both woke up wanting another one. So good. Even if I don't have time to go in and get food, I am just happy to read the updates on my phone and know that somewhere, someone is eating well.

Most meals, after you add a side of beer-battered fries and fry sauce (which you should, because they are easily the best fries in the county), end up costing you around ten bucks. Typical, higher-end lunch price, I think it's worth every penny.

I also love that they have a salad bar, which is fresh and tasty, and has delicious dressing options. Reasonably priced at $3.99 for a large plate.

Other reviews of Station 22:
Utah Diners Guide
Happy Cow

I love Station 22. But I guess I am pretty biased, I am a foody who loves sandwiches... I believe every sandwich should be a meal, and every meal a sandwich. And Station 22 makes good sandwiches. I am also just proud to say they belong in our Provo neighborhood. Read what they stand for in the "About" section on their website, and you'll feel proud too (I also like reading the little bit of Provo history they have written up on their napkin dispensers). I think whoever is in charge over there has done a good job at creating a cafe that feels like it belongs to the community, and that enriches the vibe of the city. The sign says “established 2011”, but the way it has nestled itself into Provo Center Street gives me the feeling like it should have been there all along.

Go visit yourself, and tell me what you think!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Diego's Taco Shop Review

Growing up in the southwest, Mexican food is one of the few cuisines that I rarely get tired of.  Yesterday I had Mexican twice.  I'm not tired of it at all, but one of my meals seemed like tired Mexican.

Sorry Diego's, you just didn't come very close to getting the job done for me.  Now I know that Diego's is somewhat of a Provo favorite, but in reality there are just too many other good to great options for Mexican in Utah county to have to put up with mediocrity.

Why the beef? A few reasons.  The first of these doesn't have to do a whole lot with the food, but rather the lack of it.  They were out of Carne Asada on a Saturday evening.  Having worked in the food biz, running out of something that you're "known for" is a huge faux pas, and in turn probably reflects in the rest of the review.

Second, the Carnitas and Al Pastor pork that I had in my tacos was just average.  It was good, but I can make good Mexican at home.  A tacqueria should be great. (On a side note, their Al Pastor does not have any pineapple in it like you would find in an authentic Tacqueria).

Third, and this was the primary reason that Diego's gets a negative review, THEY DON'T MAKE THEIR OWN TORTILLAS!  What the...???  Seriously?  I even make my own tortillas when I have time.  This is how easy it is:

As a result, the tacos I had (on corn) were dry.  The burrito my gf had (on flour) was store bought floury.  I just can't give a taco shop a passing grade when they choose not to do something that is so simple and cheap (i'm sure it costs more to buy pre-made) as making your own tortillas.

I apologize to all of the Diego's lovers out there, but if you want to have some real Mexican, give El Giro Gallo a try.  Diego's gets 2.5 stars.  Maybe 3 if I was really hungry.

<a href="http://www.urbanspoon.com/r/54/1221667/restaurant/Salt-Lake-City/Diegos-Taco-Shop-Provo"><img alt="Diego's Taco Shop on Urbanspoon" src="http://www.urbanspoon.com/b/link/1221667/biglink.gif" style="border:none;width:200px;height:146px" /></a>

Friday, November 11, 2011

Swanky Restaurants at Cheap Prices

So I know this is supposed to be a blog about eating for cheap, but there are two ridiculously good deals right now available online for a couple great high class restaurants.

The first one is to the Tree Room at Sundance.  I've never been there, but I've been to Zoom in Park City (its sister restaurant, also owned by Robert Redford) and it was amazing.  The deal is $80 worth of food for $40.  Still a little expensive, but not too bad for a very special occasion.  Word to the wise...$80 there can go pretty quick.

Tree Room Deal

Here's a link to reviews about the Tree Room:  Tree Room Reviews

I'm a little more excited about the second deal though.  It's at 501 on Main in Park City.  They have a good looking menu, and I think I'm going to buy this one.  For $29 you get a shared appetizer, two entrees (up to $21 each, which would include everything on their regular menu), and a shared dessert.  Again, $29 plus a tip on the full value is gonna be a little expensive, but it's a great deal for a special occasion meal during the Holidays.

Here's the deal and some Reviews:

501 on Main Deal

501 Reviews

If anyone buys these let me know how they like the restaurants!