Foodie Nightlife in SLC: The Best Bars for Nighttime Grub
Foodies can find comfort in some of the best bars that SLC has to offer. It comes as no surprise that with Salt Lake City’s population boom that the foodie and drink scene in SLC’s nightlife has exploded as well. If you don’t mind or require, delicious grub with your gin and tonic, then we have the perfect spots for you.
We’ve compiled a list of our top recommendations for the avid foodie looking for a bit of nightlife in the Beehive State. With so many options to choose from, these three fought their way to the top of our list with style. There’s something for everyone: casual, eclectic, upscale, and more.
Prohibition in Murray
Nestled in the unsuspecting neighborhood of Murray, Utah, this South of Salt Lake favorite is surprisingly entertaining. With whimsical and delicious specialty cocktails, creative small plates, and heavenly desserts, this place is sure to please any foodie willing to travel a bit outside of the typical Downtown SLC scene.
On top of their extensive menu offerings, this venue comes with a fun catch: it’s not supposed to look like a bar, at least at first glance. When you enter the establishment, you’re greeted by an assortment of antiques, many of which were found in Utah. Only upon asking to see what they have “in the back” will you see the bar, as you’re guided through a hidden door in a bookcase. Staff dawn twenties-themed garb, and if you’re lucky, you may be able to catch one of the many burlesques shows only feet away from the tables. Be sure to snag a table for one of these shows here.
Prohibition is located just north of Fashion Place Mall and is accessible from major freeways including I-15 and I-215 Exit 11. Additionally, it is only one mile away from the Fashion Place West Trax station on Blue and Red lines. You can get directions here.
Purgatory Bar in SLC
Purgatory offers the perfect blend of American and Japanese cuisine. This mellow, casual bar features an extensive beer list with terrific small plates to match. The fried pickles are hands down the best in the state paired with the chili dipping sauce. If you’re more adventurous, nori and ramen are options as well. We highly suggest trying the Vanilla Float. Even if you aren’t a traditional stout fan, this is sure to change your mind.
During the warmer months, large garage doors open up a nice patio with heaters, a gas fire pit, and lawn games to satisfy the competitor that comes out in you after a drink or two. The overall atmosphere of this spot is indeed more laid back than the others on this list, with Kendrick Lamar, Childish Gambino, and classic hip hop in the background. The staff and bartenders here are knowledgable, fun, and friendly no matter if your a local or a traveler looking for a bite to eat with a pint of beer. Don’t forget to check out their brunch menu if that’s your jam. You can also check out the rad mural on the West side of the building, and if you’re looking for more eccentric murals in SLC then check this out.
You can find Purgatory, the bar, not the limbo, right on 700 South and 62 East, just a short walk from the Courthouse Trax Station or the Little & Grand America Hotel. There’s ample street parking as well if walking isn’t your thing. Snag directions here.
The Rest in Downtown SLC
The Rest is an experience in and of itself. Bodega, a popular stop on Main Street in Downtown SLC has a second spot to snag a drink. The small shop is only large enough to fit perhaps a two dozen people, but the the bright green neon “The Restroom” sign is where the actual party starts, and by party we mean a dimly lit, moody speakeasy with divine food and original bitters. It takes a few short flights of stairs, or a small elevator if you need it, to enter the bar deep in the foundation of the building above.
There’s no real way to go wrong here, but if you need a bit of guidance then we recommend trying a few of the Honest John Bitters, their in-house brand. Take it from a bitters skeptic, the coffee and cherry bitters are delicious. There’s plenty of other boozy drinks to discover, so long as you trust your bartender to work their magic. They’ve also got an extensive vinyl collection to provide some background music to your night out in SLC that’ll please the average joe and the audiophile alike. Make sure to book a reservation if you want a booth, but if you don’t mind chatting with the bartender, then you can walk right in.
The Rest is located in the back of Bodega on 331 South and Main Street, a short walk south from City Creek Shopping Center or the Gallivan Plaza Trax Station. Main Street can be a bit of a pain to park, so plan ahead or snag a rideshare or the light rail. We promise that there’s plenty more to explore, including some truly picture-worthy cafes. If need some guidance to get there, then directions for nearly all methods of transportation are available here.