SLC: Blue Iguana v. Red Iguana
I'm heading to SLC next week. I've heard great things about the Red Iguana and would like to try it. My husband (who is from SLC) mentioned that the Blue Iguana is affiliated with the Red Iguana. He prefers that restaurant, because it's in a better neighborhood. He thought that the food was the same. What do you think?
Should I stick with the Red Iguana for the best food? Or is there much of a difference?
The Blue Iguana and the Red Iguana are not affiliated. They are two different families. Reg Iguana is very laid back and an Aztec/Mole type menu. Blue Iguana is still casual but a little bit more of a quieter atmosphere and the typical American/Mexican (I don't like the term Tex-Mex...I don't live in Texas) type of food. Red Iguana is really, really good. Blue Iguana is ...ah...okay.
I recall reading that some time back in the 80s or very early 90s the two separated in some fashion. I have no evidence to back this up, and may well have dreamed it in a fevered state. Certainly, as others have said the two are completely unique operations now.
Indeed the cuisine couldn't be more different - if you eat at Red Iguana *correctly* that is. Yeah, yeah I know, there's no correct way to eat.
But if you go to RI you owe it to yourself to try their moles or dishes such as puntas de filete a la nortena. Items you're not going to find all that often. I'm also fond of their tacos don ramon, stuffed with heart stoppingly juicy chorizo. Wash that down with some local Epic beer and you've got a tremendous meal.
None of that can be had at BI. The BI is the place for gargantuan plates of cheesy things affected with words like smothered and loaded and a cheap and cheerful cerveza like modelo or corona.
The RI neighborhood isn't fantastic but nor is there anywhere in SLC like South Central LA - plus the joint is packed so you will be fine if you drive over and use normal big city smarts :)