The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

Write for Us
Want your voice to be heard? Submit a letter to the editor, send us an op-ed pitch or check out our open positions for the chance to be published by the Daily Utah Chronicle.
Print Issues

Good eats on the cheap: Get to know your epicurean side

Nestled snugly in one of our fair city’s coziest residential nooks, the Avenues, is one of its coziest restaurants.

Isn’t that just…appropriate?

But, charming as it is, Cucina Deli also earns the title of one of Salt Lake City’s tastiest sandwich-y, lunch-y eateries. To give all the credit to its delightful ambiance would be…like…saying that, uh, all George W. Bush does is make up words.

And everyone knows that’s crap.

As president, he does so very much more. For instance, he mispronounces words, mis-conjugates verbs, misuses prepositions and invents entirely new sentence structures. And who could forget those phenomenally realistic monkey faces?

Seriously, people, all this takes a lot of work. Give the man some cred.

Tangent though all that was (and arguably unnecessary), it nevertheless applies to my point. To say that Cucina is an amazing deli because of its warm, cheerful interior, with its golden yellow walls (decorated with hand-painted grapevines!), provincial windows and shelves of sophisticated kitchen goods is a vast understatement.

I mean, sure, the place combines French and Italian elegance with expert precision and style. And sure, it somehow manages to be bustling with customers and energy and not feel crowded or tense in the slightest.

But when it comes down to it, Cucina is amazing because of its super-magni-fantasta-splendelicious food!

Cucina prepares a wide range of gourmet sandwiches and salads that, alone or in combination, yield a perfect lunch.

Every sandwich from the specialty menu is stacked with the ideal balance of bread, vegetable, cheese, meat (on all but three) and, as I like to call it, lubricant. Cucina offers five such lubricators whose job it is to wet-and whet-the palate: garlic-artichoke aioli, cranberry mayonnaise, balsamic vinaigrette and your standard mustard and mayo. The last two may be socially prescribed and a little, well, boring, but the first three are positively tantalizing.

A few excellent choices include the caprese, the Tuscan grilled chicken, the Italian roast pork and the grilled vegetable medley.

The caprese’s cold tomatoes and basil combine with the lusciously moist, fresh mozzarella to create a virtual heaven for your tongue, and the soft fluffiness of the focaccia provides the etherealness of a puffy cloud.


It’ll give you wings.

The Tuscan grilled chicken, with its hefty slab of whole grilled breast, savory roasted red peppers, fresh mozzarella (oh, there it is again), tomatoes and that tempting garlic-artichoke aioli, is a rich, flavorful and satisfying meal, despite its spongy bread (the cloud-er, focaccia didn’t work as well with these accompaniments).

For the innovator, Cucina also allows you to construct your own deli sandwich. Simply choose among meats (oven-roasted turkey, roast beef, ham, pastrami, mesquite turkey and corned beef), cheeses (Swiss, provolone, mozzarella and cheddar), breads (Kaiser roll, wheat, olive, focaccia, panini, ciabatta and marble rye) and those aforementioned lubricants. You can’t go wrong with this option.

For salad, try the grilled vegetables and Portobello mushroom, the Greek tomato and cucumber, the Oriental noodle with chicken and the orecchiette-ear-shaped pasta, roma tomatoes, bail, spinach and olives in a garlic-olive dressing. Yum-A.

But for a classic that is juicy, refreshing and perpetually mouthwatering, go for the caprese salad. It’s positively ambrosial…oh…

I think I have a weakness for caprese.

But that’s a good thing, because Cucina is located so close to campus (about seven blocks away!) that I’ll be able to stop by as often as I need to get my caprese fix.

And so will you, because chances are you’ll find something at Cucina to get hooked on.

Did I mention that it has desserts? Sweet, sweet desserts.

[email protected]

Leave a Comment

Comments (0)

We welcome feedback and dialogue from our community. However, when necessary, The Daily Utah Chronicle reserves the right to remove user comments. Posts may be removed for any of the following reasons: • Comments on a post that do not relate to the subject matter of the story • The use of obscene, threatening, defamatory, or harassing language • Comments advocating illegal activity • Posts violating copyrights or trademarks • Advertisement or promotion of commercial products, services, entities, or individuals • Duplicative comments by the same user. In the case of identical comments only the first submission will be posted. Users who habitually post comments or content that must be removed can be blocked from the comment section.
All The Daily Utah Chronicle Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *