Utah Cocktail Bars

#20: Sugar House Distillery - The craft distilling movement

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In early 2014, James Fowler introduced Sugar House Distillery and became Utah’s very first "grain-to-glass” small-batch spirits distillery — where the entire production, from the raw ingredients all the way to the bottle, is done in-house using their own still. And it all happens in their warehouse in South Salt Lake that just so happens to be South Salt Lake's first privately-owned liquor store since prohibition.

Needless to say, Sugar House Distillery is a pioneer. Which is the very attitude you need if you want to start a liquor distillery in Utah. There were permit and license issues, questions about how to deliver quality spirits without expensive stills, and an uphill battle to convince people in Utah that good liquor was worth paying extra for.

Fortunately, Sugar House Distillery is a part of a burgeoning movement, not unlike the craft beer movement. James Fowler says the small batch distillery trend is just as large as craft brewing, but a mere 10 years behind — and we’re just seeing the crest of the wave of a trend that will result in a lot more local distilleries across America, and here in Utah.

On today’s episode we talk with Sugar House Distillery’s owner, James Fowler, and his assistant distiller Jake Wood to learn about their distilling process, their liquor, and how they got started.

Join us.

 

Sugar House Distillery

2212 West Temple, #14, Salt Lake City

sugarhousedistillery.net

801-726-0403

 

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#19: Zest Kitchen & Bar - Healthy eating with Casey Staker

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Zest Kitchen & Bar is a 3-year old restaurant in downtown Salt Lake City that was launched by Casey Staker in late 2012. It's an organic, vegetarian, gluten-free restaurant with a fresh juice cocktail bar and they’re right on 275 S 200 W — across from Red Rock, right around the corner from Squatter’s and the convention center. Zest is trendy, it’s upscale, and their food is lightweight and healthy. And at night, the cocktails flow — all fresh juice and ingredients but with a creative twist. Drinks like a jalepeño margarita, a ginger spice whiskey cocktail with a fresh apple slice, and a summer beet sangria.

But on the weekend nights, Casey's history in the nightclub business shows through: at 10p on Friday and Saturday nights Zest has music and dancing, and the small vegetarian restaurant goes from dinner to nightclub, with great DJs, music, and club atmosphere.

Casey Staker’s career started in 2004 when he bought in to a new nightclub at the time, the W Lounge. And almost 10 years later, Casey closed it down to pursue his next project — a place he would actually want to hang out at… a restaurant with healthy food and drinks that’s open late, and he could go to on the weekends. So in 2012, Zest Kitchen & Bar was born.

On today's show, we sit down with Casey Staker to talk about his life growing up in rural Utah, to running one of the hottest clubs in Salt Lake City, to today where he works out of Zest, dreaming up healthy food and cocktail menu items, and planning for expansion. Tune in.

 

Zest Kitchen & Bar 275 S 200 W, Salt Lake City 801-433-0589 http://www.zestslc.com

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#8: Avenues Proper - Andrew Tendick & Liam Connelly talk craft beer, great patios, and good food.

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Avenues Proper: A staple for those in the Avenues neighborhood... and a worthy destination for those who aren't. Nestled up on 376 8th Ave, it’s quaint, it’s friendly, and they serve up great craft beer with an equally impressive food menu. And in our opinion, they’ve got one of the best patios around in the summertime.

In this episode we talk about Utah’s smallest craft brewery, their food, and their history with Liam Connelly and Andrew Tendick — two of the owners behind Avenues Proper. Tune in.

Avenues Proper

376 8th Ave, Suite C

SLC, UT 84103

385-227-8628

For more info visit theutahfoodie.com or follow us on FacebookInstagram, orTwitter.

 

#1: Whiskey Street - A chat with Jason LeCates & Matt Crandall, the two behind the successful downtown bar & restaurant

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Today we interview two of the gentlemen behind Whiskey Street: owner and proprietor Jason LeCates, and executive chef Matt Crandall. After launching Bourbon House in 2011, Matt and Jason set out to do it again. But this time they had more funding, a better location, and a drive to create an upscale whiskey bar that boasts a great drink menu and a strong food offering.

On opening day, Matt and Jason were scrambling to find plates and make sure they were prepared for the a crowd they hoped would come. And boy, did the crowd come. The response was explsoive, and today Whiskey Street is one of Salt Lake's busiest bars and whether it's lunch time, happy hour, or late-night drinks, there's always a crowd looking to sample their appetizers or try one of their craft cocktails and 130+ whiskies.

In this episode we talk about Whiskey Street's first name ("Order 44"), how they created their menu, and what it's like to run a bar in Utah. We discuss UT liquor laws, Whiskey Street's "ahi tartini" appetizer, and their future plans for growth.

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