Tucked away in the pristine mountains of Northern Utah lies Davis County, home to world-class outdoor adventures in the backyard of the Wasatch Mountains. Outdoor-minded visitors come for the hiking and skiing—but stay for the under-the-radar, yet awesome, culinary scene, from down-home cafes to craft coffee and cocktails and a farmer’s market in nearly every town. Whether you’re craving comfort food after a day on the slopes or a killer cocktail before a night on the town, Davis County is sure to please your palate. Here, a few recommended picks for food and drink during your stay.
Coffee, Cafés, and Comfort Food
Get your caffeine fix at any number of Davis County’s coffee shops and cafés. Begin with a perfectly brewed cup at Daily Rise Coffee; their on-site roasted beans make for an easy way to take home the taste of Northern Utah. Daily Rise even has something for your four-legged friends in the way of dog treats. The friendly baristas at Grounds for Coffee create craft espressos, while mouthwatering cinnamon rolls, cookies, and brownies will satisfy any sweet tooth.
For a heartier way to start the day, join locals at Janet’s Sunshine Café, a cheerful spot dishing up classic omelets, breakfast sandwiches, and to-die-for French toast—the banana pecan and cinnamon granola options are especially amazing. Sill’s Café in Layton is another homey spot, with piping hot homemade scones as big as a dinner plate accompanied by tasty honey butter; the fried potato hash browns, sausage, and stacks of pancakes, meanwhile, are rib-sticking dishes perfect for an active agenda.
To start your day on a more sophisticated note, sip espresso by the outdoor fountain at Caffé Torino, an upscale Italian café in downtown Farmington that serves up sweet and savory crepes, paninis, and divine chocolate croissants. At Plates and Palates, you’ll find small, flavorful dishes like lemon tarragon pasta salad or shrimp and spinach salad with roasted yams and grapefruit; desserts like coconut lemongrass cheesecake and ginger apple cake are equally impressive. And for a Philly cheesesteak sandwich that could hold its own in the City of Brotherly Love, don’t miss Vito’s, whose enormous subs are the perfect way to end an active day around beautiful Davis County.
Locavores will delight in the bounty of fresh produce and other regional offerings at any of the farmer’s markets in Davis County. Sample a different food truck every week at the open-air, seasonal market on Bountiful’s Main Street while stocking up on fresh produce. Pick produce by the boxful at Day Farms in Layton, or stock up on freshly picked fruits and veggies at their market a block away. It’s a great way to support locally grown produce while eating the freshest food around.
Global Cuisine Galore
When it comes to award-winning, authentic international cuisine, Davis County delivers. The Mandarin has a long list of regional and national accolades, including being named as one of Travel + Leisure’s Top 25 Chinese Restaurants in the USA, for its take on classic Chinese dishes like sweet and sour chicken or Kung Pao beef, in addition to more inventive dishes like Mediterranean lamb with an Asian-fusion sauce. The restaurant features a gluten-free menu, too, and its stunning, ornate interior lends the vibe of dining in an ancient temple.
Davis County also boasts a handful of excellent casual Asian-centric joints, including Boba World. The owners, husband and wife, are from Shanghai and bring their family recipes to your table. Start off your meal with crispy sesame balls before moving onto larger plates like the famous fat noodles, made in-house and topped with juicy, flavorful meat and veggies; chewy Boba milk tea rounds out the meal. After a day of winter adventures, Kim Long Vietnamese Cuisine is an ideal place to warm up over delicious pho noodle soup. Finally, the beautifully presented rich curries, spicy noodles, and classic stir-fries of the Thai-owned Thai Rod Dee warrant a visit.
The international flavors continue at Argentine Corner, which serves up incredible empanadas and a caramelized onion Fugazza pizza, as well as delicious, authentic desserts like flan. Another casual place to grab a pizza is Gabor Brothers, whose specialty is classic Italian favorites like lasagna and giant calzones. Javier’s Mexican Food is perfect for families, with classic dishes like stuffed sopapillas made with fresh ingredients.
From laid-back watering holes to a brewing company and even a local winery, Davis County boasts something for all palates when it’s time to kick back with a beverage. MacCool’s Public House is a solid choice for local Utah beers and authentic Irish food—try the Shepherd’s pie or bangers and mash, all of which pair well with Guinness. Rooster’s Brewing Company brews an excellent honey wheat beer and dishes up pizza, pasta, and burgers.
Scenesters will find plenty to love at the swanky Twigs Martini Bar and Bistro, which serves upscale cocktails like the citrusy Effervescent and whiskey-based Black Stiletto. It’s a great place to kick off a night on the town, but with an impressive menu (truffle penne and pesto margherita chicken, anyone?) that might tempt you to stick around for dinner, too. The Fahrenheit Lounge is another hip spot—hang out around the outdoor fire pit and try your hand at pool or darts, or stay late for the DJs on Friday and Saturday nights.
Finally, for an authentic taste of the local scene, stop by The Hive Winery & Brandy Company, a fruit and honey winery that partners with local farmers. Sample wine, brandy, or hard cider from their tasting room—and perhaps bring home a bottle to toast to your time in Davis County.
Written by Jacqui Levy for RootsRated Media in partnership with Utah Office of Tourism.