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From brunch to beer, these three restaurants are must-visits during Ogden Eats month

WB’s Eatery, UTOG Brewing Company and Tona Sushi Bar & Grill each offers diners unique food and vibes.

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) The Green Globe at Tona Sushi Bar & Grill in Ogden on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023.

What was previously an annual week of restaurant specials and deals is now a monthlong event called Ogden Eats — and that’s exactly what you’ll do during this celebration of Ogden’s dining scene.

Throughout October, get ready to munch, nibble, imbibe and devour at 20 restaurants, each with its own flavor and feel. All of them are offering something different for Ogden Eats, including special menu items and deals.

“After the summer and before snow hits the slopes, the tourist crowd starts to dwindle, so it’s important for locals to go out to eat, and support local business owners,” reads the Ogden Eats website.

Participating restaurants include Laan Thai Restaurant, Rovali’s Ristorante Italiano, The Garden Grille & Lounge, Table Twenty Five, Slackwater, Rosa’s Cafe, Xalisco, Pig & a Jelly Jar, The Prairie Schooner Steakhouse, Sonora Grill, Ramen Haus, Hearth on 25th, Union Grill, WB’s Eatery, UTOG Brewing Company, Ogden Beer Company, Lucky Slice, Tona Sushi Bar & Grill, Rooster’s Brewing Company and Warrens Craft Burger.

If you’re having trouble deciding which to visit, here are three we think are worth checking out: WB’s Eatery, UTOG Brewing Company and Tona Sushi Bar & Grill. To learn more about Ogden Eats and the restaurants that are part of the event, go to VisitOgden.com or pick up a flier inside any of the participating eateries.

WB’s Eatery

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) WB's Eatery in Ogden on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023.

WB’s Eatery is a hangout spot as much as it is a restaurant, a coffee shop and a bar, said co-owner Vivi Wanderley-Britt, and that’s evident when you walk in.

Full of natural light from numerous tall windows, the open and airy space — located in The Monarch — offers multiple seating options, including soft couches as well as tables and chairs. An outdoor patio looks over 25th Street, and an upstairs area has the feeling of a cozy loft.

Order a coffee drink, a nonalcoholic cocktail, a meat and cheese board or something for lunch, and then find your seat, settle in, and sit for a spell. The dry caipirinha ($12) — from Wanderley-Britt’s home country of Brazil — made with nonalcoholic Ritual rum, lemon and sugar is a refreshing counterbalance to the zesty chimichurri steak and eggs ($14.99) served with fried potatoes.

Wanderley-Britt opened WB’s Eatery with her wife, Amy Wanderley-Britt, in 2019. The establishment’s vibe is the opposite of its fast-paced sister concept, breakfast and brunch spot Pig & a Jelly Jar, Vivi Wanderley-Britt said, and is inspired by the couple’s travels to Mexico, South America and Europe.

“We live to travel,” Wanderley-Britt said. “We just like getting to know other cultures; we like trying different foods because we think food connects people. And you can learn a lot about a culture through their food.”

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) Chimichurri Steak & Eggs at WB's Eatery in Ogden on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023.

Wanderley-Britt said the healthy-minded menu is designed to offer something for everyone, whether they drink alcohol or not and whether they eat meat or not. All the cocktails can be made with alcohol or without, and vegetarian options include the Brussels sprouts tostadas and the grilled veggie & avocado mash sandwich. Gluten-free bread is also available.

“We want everybody to be invited and we wanted to be a place for people to just be themselves and hang out,” Wanderley-Britt said. “We always say just be you.”

The LGBTQ-welcoming WB’s Eatery is well-known for its drag brunch, held on the first Sunday of every month. The all-ages event has been going for more than two years, said Wanderley-Britt, who added that the drag show is a rarity in Ogden. She said the event is a chance for people to bring their families and unwind. “This is a safe space that you can come have a nice meal, have a nice time, and you don’t have to worry about anything,” she said.

Before you leave, check out the bodega area near the front door, with a varied selection of nonalcoholic spirits, wine and beer. Scattered throughout the eatery are items for purchase, such as books, oracle decks, tiki mugs and more. Local art on the walls is available to buy as well.

For Ogden Eats, WB’s Eatery is offering a deal where you can buy one sandwich and get another half off.

WB’s Eatery is located at 455 25th St. in Ogden, and is open Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and Fridays and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The restaurant is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Visit WBsEatery.com for more information on the establishment’s many events, from DJ sets to fashion shows.

UTOG Brewing Company

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) UTOG Brewing in Ogden on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023.

Carson Foss made sure to do his homework before opening his brewery, UTOG Brewing Company, in Ogden. And that homework involved visiting at least one brewery in every state, even Alaska and Hawaii, either on vacation or through his work as a commercial airline pilot.

Foss wanted to incorporate certain elements from those 50-plus breweries into his own, including having an open floor plan that allows people to see the brewing and packaging processes, and focusing on customer service.

Sometimes people will leave after an evening at UTOG — which is short for Utah and Ogden — saying the experience made them feel like they weren’t in Utah, Foss said.

“A lot of people that are moving to Utah have a stereotype that Utah is not fun, and their alcohol rules are very limiting,” he said. “And once they come here and go out a couple times, they realize that’s not true.”

Foss also wanted UTOG to be family-friendly. Before he opened UTOG in 2019 with two other partners, he and his wife would have to find a babysitter and travel from Ogden to Salt Lake City if they wanted to find a place to eat and have a beer. “We really wanted more options up north,” Foss said.

So, kids are welcome at UTOG, which has a restaurant license that makes it possible for families to enter. There’s a playground outside and board games inside, and the kids’ menus are even located on the backs of mini Etch A Sketches.

“You can bring your kids, they can play on the playground while you have a beer,” Foss said.

UTOG’s beer list ranges from easy-drinking lower-alcohol beers like the fruity Son of a Peach Hefeweizen, which is brewed with peach puree, to higher-point canned beers like the Snapdragon, which is a Japanese-style rice lager brewed with lime and ginger.

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) The UTOG Burger at UTOG Brewing in Ogden on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023.

To go with your beer is a full menu of appetizers, salads, soups, sandwiches, entrees and desserts, with brunch served on Sundays from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. You can’t go wrong with the classic UTOG Burger, which is a towering combination of an 8-ounce patty (made with a ribeye and brisket blend) topped with cheese, fried onion straws, bacon, house sauce and fixings on a soft bun.

For dessert, indulge in the creamy housemade New York-style cheesecake, drizzled with chocolate and caramel sauce and served with whipped cream.

On game days, go out on the patio and catch all of the baseball action from a seat that’s practically on the diamond itself.

For Ogden Eats, UTOG will be featuring a different chef every week, allowing them to “be creative,” Foss said. The public will get to experience each chef’s food as well as their recommended beer pairings to go with each dish. You can also get 20% off your order Monday through Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

UTOG Brewing Company is located at 2331 Grant Ave. in Ogden, and is open Monday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Visit UTOGBrewing.com for more information.

Tona Sushi Bar & Grill

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) Tona Sushi Bar & Grill in Ogden on Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023.

Tony Chen, who is a co-owner and head chef at Tona Sushi Bar & Grill, uses his background in architecture to craft his sushi. From the vessel the sushi is served in to the ingredients themselves, Chen said he uses that knowledge to invent dishes and “play with the food.”

Once Chen has a final product, “sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t,” he said. Sometimes he has to “demolish” the entire thing and start over, he said, but it’s all part of “thinking through the process.”

It’s a process that Chen has been perfecting for almost 20 years, as long as Tona Sushi Bar has been open. The family-friendly Japanese restaurant — named for Tony and his wife, Tina — serves traditional cooked and raw food as well as contemporary items, which is where that “play” is most prominent.

For example, the Green Globe is a feat of engineering, a perfectly round sphere of avocado slices filled with spicy ahi tuna and snow crab salad and topped with a generous scoop of wasabi tobiko caviar, with a drizzle of citrus soy encircling it all on the plate. The spicy tuna is a fitting accompaniment to the mellow crab, which is all balanced by the saltiness of crispy fried taro chips.

And the red and green Grinch roll is a mashup of Japanese and Italian flavors, featuring cherry tomatoes, basil and balsamic soy sauce in addition to the yellowtail and seared albacore tuna.

With his menu, Chen said, “we’re trying to be a little bit more creative, trying to cater to local demographics here. Are we a traditional restaurant? We’re not, we’re semi-traditional. I think we’re more leaning towards the contemporary side.”

For people who prefer their food cooked, there are plenty of options on the menu, from beef, chicken and salmon teriyaki to udon, tempera and Asian-style ribs, which are baby back ribs basted in balsamic teriyaki.

For Ogden Eats, Tona Sushi Bar & Grill will be serving several specials, including escabeche (mackerel), smoked hamachi & butternut crudo, salmon & peach crudo, and mussels with green curry.

Tona Sushi Bar & Grill is located at 210 25th St. in Ogden, and is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. for lunch. Tuesday through Thursday, dinner is served from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. On Friday and Saturday, dinner is from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Visit TonaRestaurant.com for more information.