Gulley’s Favorite Restaurants of 2019


(Cartoon by Izzy Schlegel | Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Arielle Gulley, Arts Writer

It is that time of year once again when we reflect on all of the great happenings this past year has brought us. If you’re like me, one of the biggest aspects to reflect on from the past 12 months was the great restaurants we frequented and all of the delicious food we ate. I’ve always been someone who has loved trying new restaurants and new spaces, whether in Salt Lake City or elsewhere. As someone with certain dietary restrictions (I do not eat dairy, meat or eggs) it can be challenging at times to find really great restaurants I can enjoy. This past year, however, I found so many restaurants I fell in love with. Here are my five favorites from 2019:


Green Pig

This is a pub, meaning that unfortunately, no one under the age of 21 is able to try this one. But, if you are over 21, and you’re in the mood for an impressive food menu consisting of anything from wings and burgers to tacos and egg rolls, this place is a must-try. With a separate vegan menu, Green Pig make sit easy to work around certain dietary restrictions without sacrificing great-tasting food. My personal favorite is the vegan wings tossed in a honey sriracha sauce — it’s my all-time favorite wing stop. Depending on the night you stop in, there’s always something fun going on for patrons. Thursday night karaoke is my personal favorite night of the week.


Lil Lotus

Any place with sweet potato fries is instantly a favorite of mine, and this place is no exception. This little spot in Sugarhouse could be easily overlooked by anyone passing by, but once you try it you won’t forget it. I had seen it pop up on my Yelp so many times, and it had so many great reviews that this year I decided to just stop in and give it a try once and for all. The first time I went in I remember wanting to try every item on the menu, so of course, I did just that. I ordered everything from the Navajo tacos to the Mac n’ Not Yo Cheese. The menu is fully plant-based, but you’d never know it from the taste. The Chicago hot dog had me questioning whether it was a real hot dog and someone was just pulling my leg. 


Mark of the Beastro

This spot opened up earlier this year, but it’s already made its mark on the community as a haven for vegan comfort food. The offerings include chicken and waffles, breakfast burritos and chicken wings. It’s a quiet spot right on State Street that I walked right by on my first visit even with Google Maps open on my phone telling me where to go. It’s quaint and intimate once you step inside, and I loved it. It’s a spot for delicious greasy food with a menu that’s constantly changing daily. Combining classic dishes with a cool atmosphere, Mark of the Beastro quickly became a favorite of mine this past year. 


Pizza Nono

No two pizza places are alike in my opinion, and finding a spot with pizza that everyone can agree on is easier said than done. Everyone has a certain preference when it comes to the types of crust, the toppings provided or the restaurant’s service. Pizza Nono is a spot everyone will enjoy, and one that I was pleasantly surprised by this year. On my first visit it was recommended that I try a pizza named “The Vegan,” a pie with a balsamic glaze drizzled on top that in no way sounded appealing to me, since I am not a fan of vinegar. I went out on a limb and ordered it and am glad I did — it was delicious and the first and only time I have ever enjoyed vinegar. A friend of mine also loved the margherita pizza. Aside from the crisp crust, a wide array of toppings and nice outdoor seating, the restaurant’s location also made it a winner. It’s right on 9th and 9th, a cute area that is chock-full of locally run shops.


Skewered Thai

Thai food was a cuisine that I had sadly neglected up until this year, but it has quickly become one of my favorites. When a friend recommended Skewered Thai to me, I gave it a try. I got the Panang Curry with tofu and frankly, I will never be the same. I was instantly converted and have since tried many different Thai restaurants, but Skewered is still my top choice. The restaurant is quaint, right across the street from Trolley Square — a perfect location if you’re wanting something warm to eat while you’re out shopping. There were too many nights to count where I was at school late and would stop here on my way home to grab some killer curry to end my night with. This place is a must-try.


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