By Mary Crafts
When I select restaurants to review, editor Jeanette Bennett of Utah Valley Magazine gives me free reign to choose the restaurants and pretty much lets me say what I want. This arrangement keeps my reviews honest and I can simply share my opinion — just as it should be!
I always try to find restaurants that are locally owned and started in Utah, even though they may have expanded to other states. The reason this is important to me is that even though national chains employ many Utah residents, the corporate profits leave the state.
I prefer to spotlight and encourage local food entrepreneurs who have the courage to step out in a difficult business when the success rate after five years is only 10 percent. I often visit restaurants I would like to feature but in the end choose to not showcase them. I want to have at least two-thirds of my critique be positive. The magazine and I never want to be the cause of a business closure. If I can’t review more positive things than negative things about a place, then I simply don’t choose them.
A restaurant that fits my positive criteria beautifully is Taqueria 27. They are locally owned and operated by Chef Todd and Kristin Gardiner and have over 150 Utah employees.
I first became familiar with Taqueria 27 at their downtown Salt Lake City location when all my friends were abuzz about this great new taco place. After opening four Salt Lake locations, I was thrilled to see their expansion to Utah County at Traverse Mountain near Tsunami.
The culinary team at each Taqueria 27 location comes up with daily specials unique to that location. I love checking out the “What’s hot today!” board each time I go. The specials board tells the taco of the day, guac of the day, margarita of the day, fish of the day, and dessert of the day.
Taqueria 27 is known for tacos, and there is a reason why — they are amazing! There are 12 varieties, so there is something for everyone. My favorites are the pork belly (need I say more?) the duck confit (which is a must try) and the fresh fish of the day taco. They also serve up scrumptious salads and enchiladas. Don’t miss their variety of guacamole, especially the Street Corn guacamole! Of all the appetizers, the Shrimp Tostada Bites have won my heart with the sweet drizzle of aged balsamic and agave. EVERYONE SAY YUM! And to top it off you must have Taqueria’s version of the donut craze made with churros. Oh, be still my heart!
If your preference is for hard alcohol, this place does not disappoint. They are most known for their incredible selection of tequila, mezcal and margaritas. Talented mixologists created a selection of beverages for both the drinker and non-drinker. You can follow them on Instagram for the specials of the day as well as getting a flavor for the new taco in town.
Until next time, please support our local Utah eateries and fill your life with glorious food and love.