Goodbye to Salt Lake City’s Red Butte Cafe and Martine

(Scott Sommerdorf | The Salt Lake Tribune) Construction of the Eccles Theatre in 2014 affected Martine Restaurant in downtown Salt Lake City.

It’s goodbye for two more long-time Salt Lake City eateries.

The Red Butte Cafe — which shuttered in March because of the pandemic — will remain closed, the owners announced Thursday.

Martine Cafe, also appears to have closed, as its website is non-existent and its telephone has been disconnected.

They were owned by the Pub Group of Restaurants, which also operate Desert Edge Brewery at Trolley Square and Stella Grill — both of which have reopened with abbreviated menus.

“We are sad to report that Red Butte Café will not be reopening,” according to the statement on the website. “The current pandemic has presented many challenges and we have been forced to make this difficult decision.”

Located at 1414 Foothill Drive, the Red Butte Cafe was a Salt Lake City staple for nearly 30 years. A go-to place for sandwiches, salads and Southwest fare, customers appreciated the casual atmosphere and the large glass case filled with decadent cakes, fruit tarts and other desserts.

“To our loyal customers, who have become good friends, we say thank you,” the Red Butte notice says. “We have missed seeing your faces since we closed our doors in March and we are grateful to have had the opportunity to serve you for so many years.”

As for Martine, even before the pandemic the downtown jewel had struggled to survive through the massive construction of nearby City Creek Center and the Eccles Theatre.

— Kathy Stephenson

Good, but ugly produce delivered

Humped bell peppers, three-legged carrots and weird-shaped curly kale are just as nutritious as the perfectly-shaped produce found at the supermarket.

But they’re ugly — so they often get tossed.

Rejected fruits and vegetables, however, are the jewels at Misfits Market — which announced this week that it will open a new distribution and customer service facility in West Jordan.

The direct-to-consumer delivery service will create 105 new jobs over the next five years while also helping reduce unnecessary food waste, according to the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

Misfits Market — which will receive economic tax credits for locating its West Coast headquarters in Utah — rescues organic and non-GMO produce and surplus pantry staples that otherwise might go to waste.

Subscribers in 28 states currently get the groceries delivered for up to 40% less than tradition prices.

“With heightened focus on questions of supply chain and food security,” said Theresa A. Foxley, president and CEO of the Economic Development Corporation of Utah, “Misfits Market is a very welcome addition to our state’s economy.”

— Alixel Cabrera

Don’t miss these dining deals

In July, the state began giving grants — totalling some $25 million — to businesses that could offer significant discounts on products and services.

Restaurants and bars — as well as hotels and retail shops — that received the grants, have started rolling out their “Shop in Utah” offers.

And there are some screaming deals.

BGR (Burgers Grilled Right) in Salt Lake City is offering a “buy one burger get one free” deal through December.

Penny Ann’s Cafe is doubling everyone’s dining dollars. Pay $10 and get $20 on your account; pay $20 and get $40; and so on.

At ‘Bout Time Pub and Grub in Jordan Landing, diners can get 25% off all food purchases — but not alcohol. State law doesn’t allow discounts on liquor.

Ross Metzger, co-owner of Salt Lake City’s Bewilder Brewing — which is offering 50% off all food items — is excited about the program, designed to rebuild consumer confidence and help struggling businesses.

“The grant will pay us double the amount we spent on the promotion,” Metzger said. “Seems like a pretty clever way to stimulate the economy that is beneficial for the consumers and the businesses it is trying to help.”

In all, there are about 750 Utah businesses that received grants, including 175 restaurants and bars. The full list of discounts and offers can be found at business.utah.gov/shop-in-utah-offers/

— Kathy Stephenson

Cocktails made easy with these Utah mixers

With some Utah bars still closed and the lack of social distancing a worry, many of us have been mixing cocktails at home during the pandemic.

But if your skills are limited to whiskey and Coke, these three Utah businesses are here to help expand your repertoire. They have created several bar-worthy mixers made with fresh juices and gourmet ingredients.

The only thing amateur mixologists have to do — besides ordering online — is buy the alcohol.

The Bartenders Box • Top Shelf, a Park City bartending service, has created a make-at-home cocktail box that contains recipes, ingredients and a how-to video for eight cocktails. Customers can choose from five drinks choices using either whiskey, rum, gin, vodka or tequila. Boxes are $44.50 each and are available for pickup or delivery on Wednesday, Friday or Saturday from 4 to 7 p.m. Orders must be placed 24-hours in advance at https://www.thebartendersbox.com/

Seabird Single Spirit Mixers • The owners of Seabird Bar in Salt Lake City and Draper have created five bottled mixers that range from $12 to $18. Option includes The Maid, a jalapeno, cucumber, lime syrup for tequila; the Strawberry Shrub with balsamic and angostura for whiskey; and the Bees Knees with lemon, lavender and honey for gin. The mixers are made on Thursdays and can be picked up Friday at The Store in The Gateway or in Holladay. Mixers make between 6 and 24 drinks. Contact Jameel Gaskins at jameel@seabirdutah.com or visit https://www.seabirdutah.com/

Firebirds Chile Co. • In addition to its roasted chiles and hot sauces, this Utah company sells two fresh cocktail mixes in 32-ounce jars. The Fire Roasted Bloody Maria ($15) is made withroasted poblano chiles and jalapenos for spice, and onions, garlic, cucumber and lime that balance the heat. Tequila is the preferred spirit, but vodka, gin or a cold cervesa for a michelada will work. The Margarita ($12) is infused with roasted serrano chilies. Place orders for pickup and delivery at https://www.firebirdschileco.com/

— Kathy Stephenson