Postcard from Southeastern Utah
Our trip out west was memorable. It started ever so tastily in Las Vegas, and continued across Southern Utah. While some towns had more to offer than others (does the name Xanterra ring a bell?), here were some good picks along the way.
Our first stop after Vegas was Zion National Park. How would we follow up our pasta extravaganza?!
Whiptail Grill was yummy, but it may not have been the *best* choice for a quick pre-hike lunch. We were anxious to hit the road, and good food takes time, it turns out. Regardless, I highly recommend it for lunch or dinner. The view of Zion is astonishing for new arrivals. My jaw dropped. The stuffed avocado salad had greens, marinated corn, roasted bell pepper dressing, and WARM (thank goodness!) grilled chicken. J had the specialty (according to Moon), the spaghetti squash enchiladas in tomatillo salsa. The flavors were unique--I've never had spaghetti squash crossed with Mexican flavors, and it was lovely. Great black beans.
For dinner we hit Bit & Spur for chicken flautas (for the unfamiliar, that's basically a deep-fried burrito) with tomatillo salsa, chicken fajitas, and delightful warm chips and salsa. The C&S are delish, so we passed on the appetizers. My food was OK, but sort of bland. I played it safe with the chicken fajitas, I guess that's sort of standard. I liked that they had a handful of Utah microbrews (yes, they exist), so I had the Hop Valley IPA. The back patio was a great place to sit.
Our final meal in Springdale was to die for. SANDWICHES. The best sandwiches ever. According to our cordial hosts, chef/owner Tamara Burton is formerly of Le Cirque. J had the chicken BBQ panini (panino if you want to get technical) with caramelized onions, and I had the maple turkey cranberry (that's blue cheese, pecans, cranberries, among other things). Both on the most delightful foccaccia--not greasy at all, and not so thick that it crowds the other ingredients.
Those are the highlights. You need to eat a little more, most likely, so you'll live through the country fried steak at Bryce Canyon Pines and pizza at Bryce Canyon Inn. The pickins, they are SLIM near Bryce Canyon National Park.
There are three more western-themed postcards to come. It's a lot to swallow in one big post. :) Or I guess you could say, a lot to chew on. Or you could say none of those things, but that would be less fun.