Sugar House is one of Salt Lake City’s oldest neighborhoods, located just a few minutes from downtown and the University of Utah. Known for being home to some of Salt Lake’s finest old homes, Sugar House’s majestic Sycamore-lined streets are mostly filled with Tudors, Ramblers, Victorians and cottages. The heart of the neighborhood is Sugar House Park, 110.5 acres of lush, rolling green space popular for group gatherings and sporting events in the summertime and cross-country skiing and sledding in the winter.
While it’s current charm is undeniable, Sugar House has been experiencing a recent facelift thanks to an urban planning project bringing multiple new construction projects to the area, including a new streetcar. Several new complexes with a mix of modern condos and commercial space have sprung up in the community, such as Wilmington Gardens, Sugar House Crossing, Sugar House Apartments and Liberty Village.
The urban planning project has also been successful at making Sugar House more pedestrian-friendly. The recent completion of the new streetcar connects the bustling community to the TRAX light rail system. You can take TRAX’s blue line to downtown, the red line to the University of Utah and the green line to the Salt Lake International Airport.
In addition, a walking tunnel under 13th South connects Sugar House Park to trails along Emigration Creek and leads to traditional shops, such as Whole Foods, Barnes & Noble, Toys “R” Us, and more unique ones, such as those in the Sugar House Business District on 11th South. These developments and projects, with their added shops and restaurants, are drawing additional visitors and residents to Sugar House.
It seems like every time you turn around Sugar House these days, you see a newly opened restaurant. And the diverse cuisine that these restaurants offer is indicative of the urban metropolis that Sugar House has quickly become. What’s even better – many of the restaurants have become more accessible by foot with the streetcar and walking trails that have been installed in the area.
UrbanSpoon.com recommends the following Sugar House restaurants, which are within walking distance of 2100 South and Sugar House Park:
- O’Falafel – 790 East 2100 South – This Middle Eastern, Mediterranean and vegetarian restaurant is family-owned by the Khader family from Jerusalem. Chef Mustafa is a third-generation restaurateur who studied in Switzerland with a specialty in pastries. They use only the freshest ingredients on their healthy menu and bake their own pita bread daily.
- The Dodo – 1355 East 2100 South – This American, breakfast, and dessert destination is the place to go for fabulous pie. Peanut butter cream cheese pie and chocolate raspberry mousse pie are just two whose names alone will get your mouth salivating.
- Soup Kitchen – 2012 South 1100 East – Sandwiches/subs and homemade soup perfect for a stormy day. Can I just put a plug in for their chicken noodle soup? Mmm! The restaurant also bakes their rolls, subs and sandwich bread daily.
- Omar’s Rawtopia – 2148 Highland Drive – Get ready for the best vegetarian food and fruit drinks you’ve ever had. Unique from other vegetarian cuisine, Rawtopia, like its name suggests, uses raw, organic ingredients to provide the highest nutritional value possible. The owner is from India, so you will get an international medley of ingredients and spices that will enliven your senses. Namaste!
- Original Pancake House – 750 East 2100 South – Forget national chains in the breakfast food world. The Original Pancake House is where it’s at. Yum! They offer an extensive menu from gourmet pancakes to omelets and bacon and sausage to oatmeal. You should try their hot chocolate with a dollop of fresh cream. And their fresh-fruit gluten-free pancakes don’t taste gluten free.
- Este Pizzeria – 2148 South 900 East – Some of the most authentic gourmet pizza, calzones and strombolis around. They also have excellent meatball and Italian sandwiches, and don’t forget the breadsticks.
- Yellowfinn Sushi Bar & Grill – 1166 East 2100 South – Tucked in a corner by Emigration Creek, this establishment is the premier sushi bar in the area. You can expect the very freshest of ingredients. They also offer non-sushi dishes including coconut shrimp and Yakisoba noodles.
- Sugarhouse (make sure this is one word here too) Barbeque Company – 880 East 2100 South – Memphis style barbecue sandwiches, pulled pork, pork ribs, and Dixie chicken with a southern soul, Texas, and Cajun influence. They also offer spectacular appetizers and salads.
If you haven’t been to Sugar House lately, it’s worth taking a walk around to see what’s new – and with all these great new restaurants, why not stay for dinner?