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I love Food. Cooking it. Eating it. Experiencing it. As a result, that's what this blog has evolved into: A journal of my gastronomical journeys abroad, as well as my culinary creativity at home. I hope you enjoy what I have to say, and I'd love to hear your comments... Cheers!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

SLC Part Deux: Most Certainly Not a Lemon

Touring the country in support of food-related festivities in the run up to the Super Bowl this time of year lends itself to two things: cold weather in almost every market I call on... and the chance to meet some pretty interesting people (aka Chefs) at the shows on which I appear.

This was the case when I met Chef Todd Leonard, of Blue Lemon restaurant. He did two cooking demos that morning: 1 featuring a citrus salmon (I was intrigued); the other with a riff on duck confit (I was drooling). This narrowed my choices for searching for a place to eat lunch before departing fair Salt Lake City to just one. The newest location is situated in the plum spot in the heart of the revitalization of Historic Downtown Salt Lake City. It's modern, hip design strikes a compelling counterbalance to the sheer majesty of what sits directly across the street: the tabernacle and the church. Awe-inspiring, to say the least.

Blue Lemon is a fresh take on what it calls "pure clean food with a twist." The "pure, clean" part means they never fry or microwave their meals. The twist, I come to find out, is that it's delicious...

It's a very economical and efficient cafeteria-style ordering process, which doesn't actually feel like one at all, given the chic, modern decor. I settled on the butternut squash soup and the pineapple chipotle brisket sandwich, and both were excellent. Bright, rich, fresh flavors and textures. Stuff you could feel good about eating, even while you know you're still indulging. The soup was seasoned with just enough kick to give it personality, and came with a couple of extra large croutons that stayed impossibly crunchy even down the bottom of the bowl. The brisket was moist, tender, and juicy, and didn't fall apart in my hands with every bite, which is how I prefer my brisket. Wonderful balance of sweet fruit and spicy chipotle, and yet you still taste the beef itself.

Now, this was a send-off I aspire to in every city I visit. Count this as a very pleasant surprise from Salt Lake City...

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