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SLC Volleyball Tourney Journey — Dinner Redemption After Crappy Concession

A day of girls volleyball wins on-court at the Salt Lake City Showdown was met with lackluster convention center food fare. Cutting to the quick, the “chicken fingers with fries” did the job intended — namely staving off starvation. But at $11 — and arriving as three scrawny breaded chicken pieces atop far too many limp, pale fries — it felt like paying for disappointment. I polished off the scant pieces of protein and picked at a few fries (just the good ones), before tossing a majority of the salty, greasy mound headlong in the garbage.

Dinner would have to do better. Something filling and tasty with at least the illusion of healthiness. That was the redemption I needed after a regretful tournament lunch. So well before dusk, when I’d be less apt to be jumped and mugged on a downtown side street, I ventured to Downtown Salt Lake City, onto a side street, with hopes of finding just such a place.

Between the towering Marriott Hotel and Chase Bank buildings sits “From Scratch,” an artisan restaurant that boasts sandwiches with in-house made breads, pizzas, and salads. No plate was priced more than $18 — a screaming deal in contrast to the Salt Palace convention center concession.

A party or two ahead waited for tables, but I took a seat at the counter almost immediately, across from the grill, and watched the cooks go to it in real time. Still early, 5 pm, From Scratch bustled, and served as a promising sign of the food to come. I ordered the pulled pork sandwich with fries ($17) and added a house salad ($9) to try tipping the scales from good food to good and healthy.

The grill was hot and the food came out fast. In less than 10 minutes from walking in, my salad and sandwich arrived in tandem. By all appearances, this would indeed be good and moderately healthy. Within a toasted sesame seed bun, the pulled pork was properly barky, atop Cole slaw, and dressed with bbq sauce. Beside it sat a generous pile of rich brown, hand-cut fries.

I attacked the sandwich cutting it in half, then dug in. This was the kind of sandwich you had to keep hold of to keep from bursting. So between bites, I juggled a few fries, then some fork-fulls of salad, and then back to the sandwich.

The sandwich plate was enough to make me rethink the salad, which itself was a generous pile of mixed greens topped with tomatoes, cucumber, and vegetable shavings. It served as an apt and healthy foil to the fries I intended to completely finish.

For $27, not counting tax or tip, I left full and satisfied. Located at 62 East Gallivan Ave, in Salt Lake City, From Scratch earns 4.5 out of 5 stars.

For hours and menu, view the From Scratch webpage at:

Jason James Barry is an award-winning essayist, journalist, and author. This summer he is releasing a collection of Gen X stories entitled, "Eat it and Like it: A 1980s Journal (That’s Totally Awesome & Rad, Plays in the Woods, Drinks From the Hose, Passes Notes in School, & Stays Cool Over Summer), Vol. 1".

His police-life memoir, "The Midnight Coffee Club: A Memoir of Grit, Glimmers, and the Pull of Police Life" is currently available on Amazon.


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