Romantic Dining in Utah: Sweetness in the Salty City (2023)

There is healthy competition in Salt Lake City for pleasing your palate and giving you a lovely night to remember, both in the culinary and feel-good sense. The standard is high here in this bigger city out West for dining at its best and restaurants are held at a lofty standard for producing good atmosphere and good food. There are all kinds of food genres to choose from and plenty of more casual joints, but there are a few special places both inside the city and out that make good options for celebrating the love in your life.

Located in the foothills of the Wasatch Front, tucked into a fairytale setting you'll find the romantic La Caille, with its European looking exterior and castle-like interior. Brunch is also a great option here. Many a wedding have taken place at La Caille. Also outside the city is both the rustic Log Haven and Millcreek Inn, both in woodsy, relaxing settings. Up Little Cottonwood Canyon Road, you'll find Alta Ski Resort and its restaurant, Shallow Shaft, with a beautiful view of the mountain. Even if you're not staying in the ski area, it's worth it to come to Shallow Shaft, now in its 46th year, and voted as having one of the most extensive wine lists.

In the summer, the patio at Tuscany is quite inviting, as is The Roof in downtown Salt Lake for its beautiful views of the nearby Temple Square. Enjoy whetting your appetite and planning your romantic evening.


Shallow Shaft


Shallow Shaft Restaurant has been a staple fixture at Alta for more than thirty years. A New American eatery and steakhouse, Shallow Shaft offers high-end eclectic dining in the beautiful, upper reaches of Little Cottonwood Canyon. Regional mountain cuisine served at Shallow Shaft includes fresh seafood, pasta, Angus beef, poultry and wild game - all prepared with an emphasis on organic ingredients and slow cooking. Try the crab-stuffed mushroom caps, Niman Ranch lamb t-bones, miso sake black cod or wild salmon au poivre. An award-winning restaurant, Shallow Shaft has won uncounted recognition from local and national publications in its 3+ decade tenure.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Listed in Salt Lake Magazine for "Best Wine List," their Wine Coordinator is eager to help with pairing the perfect glass with your meal.

Jennifer's expert tip: Shallow Shaft is open for business in summer and winter, but closes during the shoulder seasons; call for reservations, and to be sure the restaurant will in fact be open during your visit.

Read more about Shallow Shaft →


Martine Cafe


One of downtown's trendier eateries, this cozy yet modern restaurant features a tapas menu that's hugely popular with the dinner crowd and late-night diners alike. Offering "Euro-style dining" and "New World tapas," Martine gives its guests the gastronomical experience of Spain, North Africa and Province. Try their pimiento and garlic marinated quail on porcini marsala jus, halibut cakes with saffron aioli, and the like. For something more substantial, try wonderfully-prepared portions of frog legs, peppered mussels, lamb, and paella. Located in the heart of Downtown Salt Lake City, Martine brings forth the delicious flavors of its food with gourmet, yet simplistic, preparations.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Check Martine's web site for frequent wine dinners, where wines from notable wineries are paired with tapas courses.

Jennifer's expert tip: Martine offers free valet parking, which is very nice, considering the construction in downtown and difficulty parking.

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Chef Franck Peissel oversees this refurbished cottage home that prepares fine American dishes, French-styled and influenced. Try Franck's Southern Coconut & Lemongrass Chicken or Duck Breast with Potato Gratin and Japanese eggplant. Located adjacent to the also romantic, yet much larger Tuscany, Franck's is a more intimate restaurant, with seating for just 50. Make reservations early.Special offerings include an Artisanal Wagyu Burger and a Beer on Monday nights for just $25. On "Tasting Tuesdays," enjoy the three course tasting menu for $30. Also look for hosted wine dinners at Franck's. Calfiornia estate wineries offer their best selections with your meal.Franck's is only open until 9pm, so plan accordingly. Gift cards are available.Come and taste for yourself what has everyone in this quaint little neighborhood in southeast Salt Lake raving about.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Franck's a smaller, more intimate restaurant and it won Best of State in 2010 for Best French restaurant .

Jennifer's expert tip: Franck's offers "Tasting Tuesdays," where a 3 course tasting menu is only $30 - regular menu available too.

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Photo courtesy of Jennifer Boren

In a sea of fabulous restaurants, Tuscany manages to be among Salt Lake's best. Winning four Utah Best of State awards in 2010, including "Best Chef," "Best Tuscan," and "Best Hospitality," Tuscany has also earned recognition from Zagat as one of the "America's Top Restaurants," and from Utah Business Magazine as "Best Place to Impress Clients." Offering an ever-changing menu, Tuscany's kitchen draws from the freshest ingredients available to create dishes in accordance with the seasons. Located toward the southern end of Salt Lake Valley, and operating out of a converted mill, Tuscany offers its guests a unique ambiance and off-the-main-drag location that enhance its excellent cuisine.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Tuscany has a fairy tale like enchanting atmosphere inside and out - tour the grounds and steal a kiss in the beautiful gazebo.

Christine's expert tip: When making reservations during the summer, inquire about the outdoor patio.

Read more about Tuscany →


The Roof


Photo courtesy of The Roof Restaurant

Memorable dining awaits at this lofty restaurant, which boasts fabulous views of Temple Square. The Roof offers a grand gourmet buffet of ever-changing entrees. At any given time, you'll find a host of fresh dishes, including prime rib, chicken, fish, hot pastas, jumbo shrimp, poached salmon, and well-prepared vegetables. The restaurant, also known for its great desserts, regularly offers 20-25 sweet temptations.Named by The Culture Trip as one of Salt Lake City's Ten Great Cultural Restaurants, The Roof is worth experiencing.Open Table chose The Roof as one of the Top 100 Romantic Restaurants in the country! Impress your dinner date with pre-arranged flowers that can be waiting at your table.Special occasions don't go unnoticed at The Roof, with faboulous buffets planned for Easter and Mother's Day. There is even a special dessert buffet offered on Valentine's, with spectacular ice towers part of the decor.Send your romance levels sky high with a delicious dinner and fabulous views of Salt Lake City at The Roof restaurant.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: The Roof provides beautiful views of the Salt Lake City skyline, including Temple Square - after dinner, take a romantic carriage ride through downtown.

Jennifer's expert tip: Reservations are recommended - also, there is a gluten-free menu.

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La Caille Restaurant


Set near Little Cottonwood Canyon in Sandy, La Caille is the perfect place to take a date or business contact if you want to impress. In the style of an 18th century French chalet, La Caille sits on twenty-plus resplendent acres, complete with formal gardens, a tranquil stream, a greenhouse, and colorful peacocks who patrol the grounds. The French menu features fabulous entrees such as escargot and the signature rack of lamb. Reservations suggested.La Caille was named of the top 10 Great Restaurants in Salt Lake City by The Culture Trip. Also known for its perfect romantic setting, many weddings take place here at La Caille.Check for many special events here around the holidays and also special wine dinners and even fun paint, wine and dine events. An annual Argentinian Tango Dinner Dance, held annually, includes dinner, professional instruction and a performance by the pros.Experience elegantly prepared food and delightful romantic ambience at La Caille.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: La Caille is listed as Culture Trip's 10 Great Cultural Restaurants in Utah - check out the spring flowers, fountains and new spring menu.

Jennifer's expert tip: For something fun, check the calendar for the next Paint, Wine and Dine event, nstruction and materials provided by the Paint Mixer.

Read more about La Caille Restaurant →




Located in the lobby of a former bank building, this Big Apple-style eatery offers city-dwellers an upscale, almost funky setting that includes high ceilings and an open kitchen. Sample something different � corn and crab bisque with a cilantro-oil swirl is ideal for savvy diners. Or, if you'd like, go for foie gras, scallops with fresh veggies, or grilled black sea bass. The intriguing dessert menu features a delectable medley that includes tea cr?me br?l�e, tea sorbet, and black tea-infused chocolate cake. This award-winning restaurant occupies the ground level of the equally decorated and funky Hotel Monaco. Bambara is one of an elite handful of Salt Lake City restaurants to receive the AAA Four Diamond Award.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Located in the Hotel Monaco, the hotel offers package deals, including those to Utah residents.

Jennifer's expert tip: Chef Jones has just introduced the "New World of Flavors" menu to coincide with the remodel, a hip vibe on a historic place.

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Log Haven


With its warm, burnished interiors and soothing decor, Log Haven is a perfect place to dine; even moreso if you're celebrating a special occasion. Nestled among pine trees, waterfalls, and beautiful landscaping, the well-regarded restaurant serves New American cuisine like coriander-rubbed ahi tuna, mustard-crusted duck, and sage-tinged pastas. Also keep an eye out for bison and veal bolognese sauce over homemade pappardelle, porcini-dusted diver scallops, and pan-roasted rabbit with wild mushrooms and madeira.Log Haven is the recipient of many awards, including the recent 2014 Winner Open Table Diner's Choice award. Log Haven has been included in the Salt Lake Dining Awards Hall of Fame and is a AAA Four Diamond award winner. Wine Spectator also gives it its Award of Excellence.Log Haven is also known for being the perfect wedding and event venue, winning numerous awards for this specialty.Live music is offered at the restaurant Thursday through Sunday. Enjoy the delightful experience of this romantic gem of a restaurant in its rustic setting away from the city.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: An historic 80 year old retreat, Log Haven, voted 2013 Most Romantic Restaurant, is situated in the Wasatch National Forest and even has a waterfall.

Jennifer's expert tip: For a tasty treat after a day of hiking, try the Alpine Nachos, just brought back by popular demand by Chef Jones.

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Housed in an old warehouse and named for the reclaimed wood pallets used in the walls and the tables, Pallet has created a hip authentic vibe with its decor and interesting food. Banquette seating with pillows, oil paintings, old typewriters and stacked books all add to the rustic elegant charm of this place.Pallet is racking up several fine awards - Best Atmosphere from Salt Lake City Weekly and from Salt Lake Magazine's Reader's Choice Awards, Best Restaurant, Best New Restaurant, Best Undiscovered and Best Dessert.Only 2 years old, Pallet is becoming a popular favorite in the city. Pallet boasts of their gnocchi pillows being their type of pillow talk. Other popular favorites on the menu are the chilean sea bass, truffle fries, scallops and shrimp and grits. A full bar is available, as is patio seating in the summer. Now open for lunch and dinner.

Recommended for Romantic Dining because: Pallet won Best Atmosphere in Salt Lake City Weekly's Best of Utah 2014 - the dark wood decor makes for cozy ambience.

Jennifer's expert tip: In the summer, find a spot on the shady patio and be a part of the hipster crowd here

Read more about Pallet →

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