Skiing in Utah at Park City What's Good to Eat
I was there for a week last year and had an outstanding meal at Chimayo. High end Mexican. It was really outstanding. I had a Pumpkin Tortilla soup, a fresh salad, and an enormous barbecued sparerib crown roast. Service was great. I highly recommend it. I have had a lot of excellent high-end Mexican food in Chicago and Phoenix and this rates right up there with the best of them.
Also tried Shabu. Maybe my expectations were too high, but I didn't enjoy it as much as Chimayo. Its a much different place. Its a lot more sleek and trendy, but very well done. The waiters had a lot of attitude. I had to wave them over a few times to get their attention. Then again, it was one night when I was eating alone, it was the tail end of SunDance, and the place was packed. The food was quite good. If you're with a crowd it might be different.
If you're there a few days and need a more casual place one night, Ciseros is a good Italian place.
All three are on the main street in Park City.
Oh man, Main St. during Sundance! You were one brave person! I have some friends who are servers on Main and they absolutely hate Sundance. Customers with attitude, always wanting to do something off the menu ("I'd like the spanish omlette, but with egg whites only, no onions, and could you put in some avocado instead and saute the veggies before you put them in the omlette, and do them in EVO, not butter"), take up a table for 3 hours with only coffee, then leave bad tips. There is a lot of server burnout during Sundance.
Shabu got listed in some mags as one of the top 100 "hot" restaurants in the US a few years ago. Before it got the publicity, it was fun to go to. But, during Sundance, it is just too "trendy". Try it in June or October - a different atmosphere.
Yeah - it was at the tail end of the festival and you could smell the attitude in the air. I was able to talk my way into tables at a few good places despite the crowds, but I am sure you are right about the off season.
On a side note for anyone other hounders going that time of year, there is big price inflation during Sun Dance. A few places had Prix Fixe 30% higher than normal prices.
Unfortunately, I hear the powder ain't so deep in October and June... Next time I'll try it in Feb and leave the Hollywood crowd to themselves.
The powder may not be deep, but the bike trails are great :-)
During Sundance, I'll stay close to the restaurants where I'm a frequent diner - they will give their known locals a price break if they've raised their prices for SD. Plus, my server friends like to see a familiar face, and they know I'll tip a little extra to brighten their day :-)
in addition to the above mentioned cheap eats, i'd consider Reef's (Israeli Middle Eastern food) in Kimball Junction and the Sidecar Bar with their NYC-style pizza. Seriously the best pizza in the state.
Mariposa is quite good. Glitretind is fun for hte wine list and desserts. Snake Creek Grill in Heber and the Tree Room in Sundance are worth the drive. YOu can get to Salt Lake within half an hour. You can search for all the Salt Lake City recommendations on this board easily. The usual suspects.
For new year's, the resorts all tend to do something. I tend to leave town, so I admit I"m oblivious to the revelry that goes on.
We were in Park City back in March, so you might want to check out what I posted after I returned. As far as fine dining, Riverhorse is not as great as it used to be because the chef that was there when the place received all it's stellar reviews has moved to Mustang. The husband had dined at Riverhorse once when it was terrific, once after the new chef had taken over, and then with me at Mustang. His opinion is that the first time at Riverhorse was great, the second time was mediocre, but Mustang was his favorite.
I know Shabu is the hot place to go, but we couldn't get in the door that night and went up to Kampaii. The food was really outstanding.
If you're staying in Park City, you'll have tons of options all of them very good.
To second a couple of the cheaper recs above, I also like Loco Lizard and Bangkok Thai. My boss loves Chimayo. I have always liked Snake Creek Grill (it's in Heber City, but definitely less than 30 minutes/miles from Park City).
As for New Years Eve, I believe Stein Eriksen Lodge at Deer Valley always has a big party. The Homestead Resort as well. Not having been, I don't know how great they are or what style. Like another poster said, all the resorts will probably have something going on. Suede, a club in Kimball Junction, will probably have a big show/party. Depends what you're looking for, I guess.
The Riverhorse Cafe is the swankiest eats whats the missus and I know from roundabout these parts. "On January 16th, 2000 the Riverhorse received the ultimate honor in the hospitality industry, when it was selected by the Mobile Travel Guide as one of the top 233 restaurants in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The Riverhorse is the first restaurant in Utah to ever receive this highly coveted award and the only restaurant in the state to ever be honored with both the DiRoNA Award and the Mobile Four Star Award." - http://www.riverhorsegroup.com/onmain/
Wow, you are brave. Park City over Christmas holiday! I get out of town then, too busy.
Local places I would recommend:
Loco Lizard - non-standard Mexican food. More than just tacos, burritos and enchiladas.
Sushi Maru - the local's sushi bar. Mikey doesn't have to advertise, we locals keep him busy.
Eating Establishment - our favorite place in town for breakfast.
Spencer's Smokin' Grill - decent, fast, inexpensive BBQ.
El Chubasco - our "hole in the wall" Mexican. It's where the local Latino population goes for food.
Bangkok Thai on Main - actually good Thai food. They have been recognized for their wine list, too.
These places aren't expensive. They are well visited by us locals, so the prices aren't "resort" quality.
Now, for some higher-end places, where you'll have to make reservations, given you're there over the Holidays:
Seafood Buffet at Deer Valley - it's a fantastic spread. We splurge once a year for it.
Mariposa at Deer Valley - high-end dining. Usually they have prix fixe dinner available, with a vegetarian option.
Glitretend at Stein Erikson Lodge - our favorite place to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries. Excellent wine list, with wines that won't gouge your wallet, varied entries, they will modify things if you ask, and some of the best desserts I've had anywhere.
Wahso - Asian fusion dining. Good saketinis.
Shabu - Asian fusion dining. 2 or 3 years ago, rated one of hte top 100 new restaurants in the U.S. by Conde Nast/Food & Wine.
As for a place to go to for New Year's Eve, I honestly can't think of one. Do you want a bar atmosphere or something fancy?