July 19, 2008

Tony Caputo’s Market and Deli

By Jerry Ireland

314 W. 300 South, Salt Lake City, UT
menu at: caputosdeli.com

The Food (taste/flavor/quality of food & drinks)
>>>>>= always great, unique, and flavorful no matter where you’re from

The Atmosphere (environment, wait staff, comfortableness)
xxxx= comfortable

Price (what to generally expect to pay per person per entree)
$                    under $10

Value (what you get for your money)
***** = superb -lots of quality/taste for what you pay

Salt Lake City doesn’t readily come to mind when thinking about the nation’s best spots for sandwiches. But with places like Tony Caputo’s Market and Deli, Gandolfo’s NY Deli, and Legers, sandwiches could be Salt Lake’s signature food. At the top of the sandwich game is Caputo’s downtown at the corner of 300 West and 300 South.

Boasting distinctive Italian and southern European food, Caputo’s delivers with fresh food and a family atmosphere. Tony Caputo maybe the friendliest restaurant owner I have ever met. He makes an effort to get to know most of his customers, which is no small task since there are usually lines out the door during lunch hour. Many of the Caputo clan takes part in running the business, giving it a home away from home feel. It seems harder and harder to find that feeling in restaurants these days and that’s probably a part of why Caputo’s keeps people coming back for more.

The Wednesday Special is what draws me in on most visits. Each day of the week offers a different pasta dish and Wednesday is lasagna. Several fresh batches are made by hand and it is easily the best in the city. The pasta melts in your mouth. It’s served with a green salad and a roll. The pasta specials price out at $8.45 and worth every penny.

The menu includes, sandwiches, soups, salads and deserts. My sandwich is the Caputo ($6.45).  It has prosciutto, mortadella, salami, provolone, lettuce, and tomatoesand is served on a hard Italian roll covered with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. What makes this great is the freshness and high quality of each and every ingredient. Both the oil and vinegar are sold at the Caputo’s Market if you are looking to add some of these fantastic flavors for your own cooking. I am not alone in my love for the Caputo as it was named the third best sandwich in America by FHM magazine.

There are 11 other sandwich choices including The Meatball, The Prosciutto, The Italian Cold Cut, Feta and Tomato, and The Cheese Lover. I’d recommend opting for any one of these on focaccia, as it’s my favorite bread in the whole city. Sandwiches run between $6.25 and $7.45 depending on your selection.

Freshness is also the key to Caputo’s salads, which use a base of virgin olive oil, and balsamic or red wine vinegar.  Whether it is using greens, pastas, or vegetables, all the salad choices are made to order and excellent. A Salt Lake favorite is the Vanocur Salad ($7.45) named after a local news reporter. It’s made of seasonal fresh greens with feta, green olives, tomatoes, croutons, pepperoncini topped with balsamic vinaigrette and a roll.

Desserts include New York Cheesecake ($3.50), Tiramisu ($3.50), Chocolate Cake ($5), and Cannoli ($2.75). My fav: the cannoli. It tastes like it is straight from Italy and should not be passed up.

The marketplace that is connected to the restaurant has the largest selection of Italian foods in Utah and is a Godsend for people from back East or anyone that appreciates top notch gourmet foods.

Overall Caputo’s is, in my opinion, THE best place to grab a quick lunch in the entire state of Utah. I used to go there every week when I lived in Salt Lake. Now when I visit, I make sure to plan my stay so that I can grab a Wednesday lasagna special. Caputo’s is a place that I must stop and you should too.


Post a Comment