On the StreetRestaurant Reviews

Three new restaurants coming to Block 47

If you thought there was a lot of progress recently in Downtown Salt Lake… get ready for a meteoric 2024. 

Downtown’s population will double this year, with Astra, Revival, and Worthington ushering in hundreds of apartments. This will require more restaurants, social establishments, and expanded amenities like third spaces, parks, dog runs, and transit options. 

The F+B scene is ready to explode with the impressive, celebrity-driven STK that just opened in the West Quarter and mind-boggling nightclubs coming to The Gateway — Electric Fish and Neptunes Palace

We’ve been plying our sources for information on the prolonged renovation of the magnificent Maxwell’s space in the Boston Building. You’ll remember it is one of the most spacious rooms downtown, with gorgeous views of Main Street and a dynamic patio setting. We can finally reveal that HP Management will open its new brainchild, Aker Restaurant and Lounge, there late this spring. “A groundbreaking concept that seamlessly marries the culinary finesse of upscale cuisine with the dynamic allure of downtown’s nightlife.” Hmm, intriguing. Digging in further, we found they’ll specialize in Japanese cuisine, specifically robatayaki (think small, slow-grilled skewers over charcoal). An upscale atmosphere will transform into an “alluring contemporary lounge” in the later evening. They seem to have the money to bring something special to market, so we’ll keep spying on the space! (Maxwell’s Tiny Pub relocated to 200 South and 357 West).

Next door, at the short-lived Pago on Main space, a vinyl wrap is up for Felt Bar & Eatery. While taking spy photos, owners Rich Romney and Travis Herbert invited me in for a peekaboo. A gorgeous 30-seat bar wraps the interior in cool blue hues, and modern chandeliers drip from the ceiling. The space is sophisticated, but deeply approachable, plus these two have the chops to raise the barre on service. Rich was with Takashi for 15 years, and Travis has 18 years of experience in fine dining. They hope to have their license in February.

We’d be remiss not to mention that, after closing Pago, Scott Evans opened Finca Pintxos Bar on Regent Street, and everyone 21+ should try the gin cocktails and Spanish tapas.  

The reliable source who gave us the lowdown on Aker also whispered an update on Repeal, coming to the Walker Center’s basement (the old Bourbon House). They are taking their time to get the space perfect and expanding not only the footprint but doubling the kitchen! Live music (especially jazz) will float through the space, which reminds us of D.B. Coopers. Does anyone else remember?

On the same block, the old Circle Lounge (we’re really in the archives today) is going to get a second life as a supper club from a new-to-state operator. (FYI, for those who remember, the circle has already been removed). More info next month!

Finally, Lake Effect is now open everyday for lunch, starting at 11 a.m. We can vouch for the chicken burrata sandwich. The drinks and luxurious atmosphere will have you wondering, “do I need to go back to work?” 

One postscript, dear reader, if you ever wondered just how observant we are (nosy and nerdy), we were thrilled to notice Melting Pot’s new signage. 

Josh Jones

Joshua Jones is the director of communications and marketing at the Downtown Alliance at downtownslc.org.

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