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Table talk

Metropolitan has named a three-chef culinary team to run its kitchen. Jed Banta, Chris Durfee and Justin Shifflett will replace executive chef Todd Mark Miller, who left in September to launch a restaurant in New York City. The three chefs have worked together at Metropolitan for the the past eight months.

Banta cooked with natural and organic food at a Salt Lake Wild Oats store before getting hired by Miller 1 1/2 years ago. Durfee managed Snowbird's Keyhole Junction and was chef at The Canyons' Lookout Cabin and for the Diamond Creations catering company. Shifflett attended the Atlantic Culinary Academy in Dover, N.H., and worked at Red Mountain Spa in St. George.

Harmons grocery stores donated a total of 4,312 turkeys to local food banks the day before Thanksgiving. Of those, 3,600 went to the Indian Walk-in Center for Crossroads Urban Center's annual turkey giveaway. The remainder of the turkeys went to food banks in St. George, Ogden and Orem. Harmons customers were asked to contribute, and Harmons matched the donations.

Grand America, 555 S. Main, is hosting Breakfast with Santa, Dec. 2, 9 and 16, from 9-11 a.m. in the Garden Cafe. This includes a breakfast buffet, entertainment, photos with Santa and holiday goodies. Cost is $20 for adults, $10 for children. Reservations, 258-6707.

Carl's Jr. last week began serving its Philly Cheesesteak Burger, which consists of thinly sliced steak and a charbroiled burger patty finished off with peppers, onions and Swiss and American cheeses on a seeded bun. Suggested retail price is $3.49 for a single, $4.49 for a double and $4.99 for the half-pound, Six Dollar Burger version. This year, Carl's Jr. celebrates 65 years in the quick-service industry.

El Pollo Loco, a fast-casual chain that specializes in citrus-marinated, flame-grilled chicken, has announced plans to open 15 locations throughout Utah beginning next year. The company, based in Irvine, Calif., currently has 350 outlets, mainly in California, and has been in business 25 years.

Sweet Tomatoes restaurants are celebrating the holidays by serving traditional Creamy Herb Turkey Soup, and new this year, Savory Apple Stuffing. The soup uses white meat turkey, tangy cranberries and seasonal veggies. The stuffing is a blend of onions, celery, spices and Granny Smith apples.


Submit announcements to Valerie Phillips, food editor, Deseret Morning News, 30 E. 100 South, P.O. Box 1257, Salt Lake City, UT 84110; by fax to 801-237-2550; or by e-mail to vphillips@desnews.com.