Actor, chef team up on food, beer cocktails for Salt Lake City’s Beer Bar

First Published      Last Updated Feb 18 2014 01:36 pm

Two of Utah's most famous residents — actor Ty Burrell and chef Viet Pham — are collaborating on a new Salt Lake City bar that features 150 brews, a rotating roster of beer cocktails and, of course, gourmet food.

The simply-called Beer Bar is expected to open in March next to Salt Lake City's Bar-X, 155 E. 200 South, which Burrell, the goofy dad on "Modern Family," co-owns with his brother and some extended family members. The same clan also will own and operate Beer Bar.

Pham, co-owner with Bowman Brown of Salt Lake City's vaunted Forage, is lending his expertise as the consulting chef, according to this article in the March issue of "Food & Wine," now on newsstands.

Back in 2011, Pham and Brown were among "Food & Wine's" Best New Chefs of the year.

In the article, titled "The TV Star, The Chef & The Brat," Burrell and Pham talk about the new place and their "mutual admiration" for each other's work.

"Viet has finesse," says Burrell, who first met Pham when he dined at Forage. "He's obviously creative, but there's also a level of detail and thoroughness that's remarkable."

Says Viet of Burrell: "I'd love to trade places with Ty for a day. Any chance to be near Sofia Vergara on the set of "Modern Family" would be a dream come true."

The nine-page spread includes six recipes, many photos and nods to Burrell's and Pham's favorite Salt Lake City restaurants, including Tony Caputo's Market, Finca, Naked Fish and The Copper Onion.

For the interview and photo shoot, Pham made several Beer Bar menu items including a Brat Reuben sandwich, stuffed with Utah-made bratwurst, pastrami and Swiss cheese, and topped with Thousand Island dressing and pickled vegetables called giardiniera — something Pham remembers eating with his family while growing up in Chicago.

The bratwurst should pair nicely with the Beer Bar's Low Approach, a low-alcohol beer cocktail made with India Pale Ale.

"The good news is you can have three or four of them and still be fine," said Pham, who is still working on Ember + Ash, a new Park City restaurant he hopes to open this summer.