This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
In the center of downtown Salt Lake City lies a street that remained hidden and forgotten for years. Sunk below Gallivan Center to the north and surrounded by taller buildings to the south, Gallivan Avenue has long been a destination overlooked by most except during Food Truck Thursdays. But over the past few years, the dining establishments that have chosen to call this street home have been quietly gathering a loyal following.
Diversity may be the calling card of Gallivan Avenue as there's something for every diner be it morning, noon or night. Start the day at Three Pines Coffee for pastries and an espresso or pick up a cold-pressed juice from Pulp Lifestyle Kitchen across the street. For lunch and dinner, stop by the two longest-open restaurants on the street: Bangkok Terrace for Thai and From Scratch for wood-fired pizzas. Finally, settle in for a cocktail and better-than-bar food at the street's newest establishment Good Grammar.
Three Pines Coffee
Located on the south side of Gallivan Avenue adjacent to From Scratch, Three Pines Coffee has seen its business pick up substantially in the three months since opening. "We had a hunch that the street had potential to really come alive by the time we established ourselves a bit more, and it definitely has," says co-owner Meg Frampton. She explains that she and co-owner Nick Price chose the location, "because we wanted to find a small space for our grab-and-go coffee shop in the heart of downtown. We liked that it was right next to the plaza where events would be happening all summer."
The weekday morning rush regularly brings customers craving Three Pines' signature beverage The Beehive Balla. It's made of cold brew, mocha slightly sweetened with housemade vanilla and finished with a splash of half and half. Paired with a vanilla bourbon cake doughnut made by the talented bakers next door at From Scratch, you'll want to get there before noon when they typically sell out. Weekends are more leisurely with time to savor the Heart Roasters coffee from Portland, Ore., along with maple syrup-spiked almond milk.
Pulp Lifestyle Kitchen
Serving cold-pressed juices all day in addition to a breakfast and lunch menu, Pulp is a popular option for health-conscious diners. You'll find everything from acai bowls topped with fruit and housemade granola to wraps and salads that can be enjoyed outside on the patio tables. Try the cacci bowl with spaghetti squash topped with richly flavored tomatoes, fresh herbs and turkey meatballs then garnished with shaved parmesan. Pulp has recently opened on Sundays so it's easy to pick up a day cleanse six-pack to start the week on a rejuvenated note or just drop by to cool off with a flavor-of-the-day pulp-sicle.
At Bangkok Terrace, the first restaurant on Gallivan Avenue, opening in 2013, lunch business is brisk during the weekdays, says owner Kulnapa Siripong, because of the ideal location near offices and the Marriott hotel. Diners can still feel a part of the bustling foot traffic through the restaurant's giant windows that open up onto the sidewalk or get a more serene view by looking up through the skylight as they enjoy one of the best renditions of tom kha gai soup in the city or one of the many curries on the $8.99 lunch-combo menu. "The curries are very popular items here," says Siripong. "We make the curries fresh every day and we chop all the vegetables every morning. Most importantly, we don't make the curries sweet like others do." Siripong hopes to make the restaurant more inviting for dinner guests with an interior remodel and the addition of beer and wine in the near future.
By most accounts, From Scratch is the restaurant that put Gallivan Avenue on the dining radar and continues to be one of the most popular. Tucked under the parking structure, this gound-level eatery looks up at Gallivan Plaza and downtown high rises through floor-to-ceiling windows above the cobblestone street.
As the name implies, many of the items on From Scratch's menu are just that made from scratch. The Austrian flour mill behind the barn door mills a variety of grains that go into many of From Scratch's menu items, including pizza crust and burger buns while the woodburning oven behind the bar puts the perfect amount of char on pizzas such as the mushroom and salumi.
Whether dining here for lunch or dinner, heavily consider the burger menu for one of the juiciest bites in downtown and save room for dessert in the form of housemade baked goods.
The newest addition to Gallivan Avenue is Good Grammar on the northeast end of the street next to the steps leading up to Gallivan Plaza. "We chose that location to increase the foot traffic on the Avenue," says co-owner Jess Dorough. "It's such a beautiful area that wasn't getting much activity and it's a really great space." Unlike its restaurant counterparts on the street, Good Grammar is busiest on the weekends, Dorough says. "We get quite the dance crowd!"
Beyond music and dancing, the bar also offers a small but stellar selection of salads, snacks, sandwiches and desserts for patrons at lunch, dinner and late night all overseen by chefs Neal Henderson and Alex Vastardis. A very adult grilled cheese sandwich features prosciutto crudo, apple chutney and sage while the spin on chicken and waffles offers up confit chicken atop waffles made with croissant dough for an extra airy and flaky base. Add candied bacon and a maple chipotle glaze for a bit of a kick, the croissaffles are then finished with a punchy bourbon sabayon sauce and whipped cream. They're perfect for sharing or as a sweet-leaning entrée for one.
Behind the bar, co-owner Joshua Edwards and team have crafted a menu of cocktails based on classic drinks and preparation (like the sazerac) as well as pop culture icons. The gin-based Monika and bourbon-based Hendrix cocktails are early customer favorites, according to Dorough.
Welcome to the Salt Lake dining scene on Gallivan Avenue a secret no more!
Lunch Bunch Concert Series
Through Sept. 16, visit Gallivan Plaza from noon to 1 p.m. each weekday for free, live entertainment. Music of every sort from folk to jazz and rock to acoustic is featured along with storytelling, line dancing and everything in between. Check the full schedule online at http://www.thegallivancenter.com, then bring your lunch or pick up take-out and enjoy the sunshine and entertainment at Gallivan Center.