One night recently, I dropped into a scene that reminded me slightly of that bar in the James Bond film "Skyfall," where 007 is dropped into a pit of Komodo dragons, just in Salt Lake rather than Singapore.
Thankfully, Club Habits at 832 E. 3900 South was more friendly, and I've really no idea why I have never been there.
The 12,000-square-foot venue, with seating for 250 guests, has won "Best of Utah" nightclub categories six years consecutively. The club has open architecture, a sunken dark floor, multiple bars and state-of-the-art sound, video and lighting. My husband and I spent a while perusing the seating areas; the sunken part where people were playing, sections where you could sit at the bar, booth seating and high tables, and big sofas where you could just chill and watch football, plus a patio with plenty of seating.
Most bars in Salt Lake are geared toward either girls or guys. Here, the nightly events are appealing to both sexes. While I enjoyed the girly Jaw Breaker ($8.50) cocktail, my husband had a traditional Bombay Sapphire gin with tonic ($6).
The menu is a good mix of appetizers, sushi, salads, sandwiches on the lighter side, and more hearty dinners such as steak and fish 'n' chips.
The barbecue chicken salad with ranch dressing is something I'd happily eat every night. My husband's plate of salmon tacos ($11.49) was equally delicious.
Even though there were sporting activities going on around us, it felt like an intimate dinner. Our server, was attentive, friendly, genuine and the type of girl I'd probably be friends with.
The weekly schedule at Habits includes football, Texas hold 'em poker, an '80s night, karaoke and a Tuesday ladies night.
The owner, Bill Carter, said Habits' niche is "a more mature clientele that likes to go out, have a nice dinner and enjoy dancing. We have a dress code on the weekends, which our customers seem to like. We boast that all of our music we play has a video of the performers performing that particular song, on all of our 16 plasma TVs and three life-size screens."
West Valley resident Robert Real said he is a regular at the club. "The club has gone through a number of transformations and name changes over the last 30-plus years," he said. "It's a nice club with a quality sound system, good music and friendly atmosphere. I like it here because I have a group of friends that frequent on a regular basis, there is a good age mix of patrons, with the average being 35 to 40, security is constantly visible and friendly while taking a serious approach to patrons' safety and cocktail and food service is friendly, fast and professional."
He also said he likes the friendly atmosphere.
I certainly felt as if it was the right sort of atmosphere for a night out with my husband and was just the right vibe for our age group (late 30s). It was also the type of place that I would organize a group of my friends to go to for an occasion or just a night out.
OK, I can't not say it this club is going to become a habit.
Where • 832 E. 3900 South, Salt Lake City; 801-268-2228 or clubhabits.com
Open • Daily for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to -3 p.m.; dinner from 5-11 p.m. on weekdays and midnight on weekends.
Deals • Buy-one-get-one-free appetizers 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday – Thursday. Friday lunch special.