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Home / Articles / Food / Restaurant Reviews /  Red Rock Fashion Place
Restaurant Reviews

Red Rock Fashion Place

Highs & lows at Fashion Place brewpub

By Ted Scheffler
Posted // September 23,2011 -

By way of disclaimer, I should acknowledge that some of the folks at Red Rock Brewing Company have had issues with me in the past. I never quite understood why, since almost everything I’ve written about Red Rock has been positive. I think they felt that I just didn’t write about them enough. At any rate, it makes it tough on a restaurant reviewer when his subject already feels that he has some sort of agenda, which I don’t. The truth is that I’ve always liked Red Rock, dating back to when the original Salt Lake City location opened in 1994; I’ve enjoyed the food and beer there. And the service, almost without exception, has been excellent.

But my job is to be impartial: to be as objective as possible and write truthfully and accurately about my restaurant experiences. And when it comes to the new Red Rock at Fashion Place Mall, those experiences were very mixed—particularly the service, which hit both highs and lows.

Arriving on a Sunday evening, I was impressed by the sprawling new Red Rock at Fashion Place Mall, with its inviting combination of warm wood décor and contemporary styling; it’s modern, yet comfy—and very roomy. The restaurant/pub was sparsely populated with customers on that Sunday, so I was a little puzzled when my wife and I were immediately seated by the hostess in the bar area, at high tables with tall chairs. I wondered why we didn’t warrant a table in the regular dining space. There were lots of tables available. In fact, I posed that question to my wife and was overheard by our server, Kim, who also was doubling as bartender that evening. Kim explained that the hostess was just trying to parse the clientele out to all the servers, and there was nobody sitting in the bar. She offered us a seat in the dining room, if we’d prefer. “No problem,” I said, and appreciated the explanation. Kim, it turned out, was an excellent server and bartender—top-notch, in fact. I just wish I had such positive remarks about the entire Red Rock staff.

We kicked off dinner with fried green tomatoes ($7.99), which aren’t for everybody. But, if you like fried green tomatoes like I do, you’ll like these: fried with a light, crispy breading and served with a tasty aioli and cocktail sauce. Less appealing was the baked Italian cheese-dip appetizer ($8.49). Actually, the dip was pretty good—a mélange of Jack, cream and cheddar cheeses along with minced green onion, sun-dried tomatoes and mushrooms. But it was served with tepid, mushy “beer” bread, which tasted like something frozen and reheated. We found that dipping the fried green tomatoes into the Italian cheese dip was a better formula.

Munching on our appetizers and sipping a Red Rock Elephino Double IPA, which was delicious and ultra-hoppy, I couldn’t help but notice the folks seated at the bar adjacent to us. Let’s see … there was what appeared to be the manager of the restaurant, who was doing paperwork and having a drink. And he was joined by other employees, including servers and kitchen staff (all male) who still had their aprons on. At one point, we counted five employees at the bar, all drinking alcoholic beverages, which seemed very unprofessional to me. “Who is supervising the staff?” I kept wondering, as the manager lingered at the bar throughout our entire visit. It was as if most of the staff had already checked out on that Sunday evening, even though the restaurant was open until 10 p.m. Thankfully, Kim was on top of things—running the bar for the entire restaurant, in addition to serving the customers in the bar area.

Macadamia-crusted wild salmon ($17.99) was delectable and perfectly cooked. An herb-seasoned rotisserie half-chicken was also delicious—very tender and juicy—in fact, one of the best roasted chickens I’ve had in Zion. The sides seemed to be an afterthought, though: big, unappetizing orbs of bland cauliflower and broccoli and mealy steak fries. Next time, I’ll choose the horseradish mashers over the fries. Portions were large, so we declined dessert. Having paid our bill, friendly Kim thanked us and wished us a good night. Meanwhile, at the entrance, the hostess—her feet propped up on a chair—had nothing to say to us on our way out the door.

A follow-up visit to Red Rock, on a Saturday, proved as different as is night from day. Service was professional, courteous and attentive—no problems whatsoever, a very pleasant dining experience, indeed.

Red Rock is one of the few places I know that offers an old-fashioned fried seafood platter ($17.99), and I love it. I’ve always thought the fish & chips ($17.49) at Red Rock were superb, and the combo platter of deep-fried Alaskan halibut, calamari, scallops and shrimp was spot-on. The fish and shellfish were perfectly cooked—so often, fried seafood is overcooked—with a gorgeous, golden, crispy beer-batter crust. I don’t know any place that does fried food better than Red Rock. And the fish & chips and fried seafood platter both taste even better with a pint of Red Rock’s top-fermented Bavarian Weisse beer or their Belgian Wit alongside.

The wood-fired pizzas at Red Rock are consistently some of the best around. The pear and walnut pizza ($9.99) is an upscale option, with caramelized onions, pear slices, candied walnuts, Gorgonzola cheese and rosemary oil. My favorite, though, is a classic Italian sausage pizza ($9.99), made with homemade spicy Italian sausage, mozzarella cheese and tomato sauce. The pizzas all have an appealing, slightly chewy, medium-thick, crispy crust.

So, I suggest avoiding Sundays at the new Red Rock. Try to schedule your visits when employees like Kim or beloved longtime SLC bartender/server Erika Palmer are on duty. It’s then that Red Rock really rocks.

RED ROCK FASHION PLACE
Fashion Place Mall
6227 S. State, Murray
801-262-2337
RedRockBrewing.com

 
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
Posted // February 29,2012 at 13:38

Went here for the first time last night for my sisters birthday. I have to say the food was decent. I feel the service was pretty lacking and the price was pretty high for the meals we ordered. We ordered the carrot cake for dessert (which was wonderful) and our drinks were dry at the time we ordered dessert. Our waitress seemed put out that we were ordering dessert at all and dropped off our dessert so fast we couldn't even ask for refills. We never got our refills with our dessert and once the credit cards were dropped off, she was no where to be found. She got her 18% gratuity with no choice of ours. This is a huge no no for restaurants to let drinks go dry. I think this is a sign of a lazy bad server. We even had to go find our own take home boxes.  The host at the front desk was (Mr. Personality) all sarcasm intended. He didn't say a word to us as we were leaving. 

We will not visit for dinner again, much better restaurants to pick from. I have heard the brunch is good and will probably try that.

 

REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
Posted // November 3,2011 at 09:14 I beleive it's a generational AND cultural thing mixed together to produce the worst customer service I've ever seen in multiple industries in this town and probably across the country.
I can't tell you how many drive-throughs I've used in the past year manned by minorities or young caucasians who are oblivious to their customers. I gave up saying "You're welcome" sarcastically to a blank stare while handing me my change or receipt. How many times have we all walked into a business that is there TO SERVE CUSTOMERS only to stand there while a group of employees chat and joke with each other and then, as if GOD cleared his throat, they all look at you and surrender to the idea of actually helping you pay them your money so they can get paid and live. It's called a retail transaction and I'm sick and tired of being treated like an afterthought by a bunch of low flying underachievers who act like they do not want to be there and were forced by their parents. I went to a tire shop this week manned by Latinos. The name of the place is the owner's gringo name, like Fred Smith's Tires, only it's Colby's, really. I walked into the shop office and stood at the counter while a flurry of animated activity went on around me conducted by short, brown people in coveralls. They were talking to each other in Spanish and seemed very industrious, helping a guy find one used tire and a Latino woman waiting on a repair. Not one word to me, not one. Not a greeting, not a "have you been helped?", not a "what are you looking for?" not even a "WTF are you doing here?" Just silence and hurried activity all around. I walked, and drove to Discount Tire where they look you in the eye when you walk in and say,"Hi, how can we help you today?" And what kind of experience do you think I would have if I had a problem with a tire from Colby's? In the insurance business, they say the true measure of a compnay is how they behave when you have a claim, not when you're buying the policy. I am protesting poor customer service in this town by voting with my dollars. If you hire people who treat me like shit when I walk in off the streets, I walk and you don't get my dough! It's simple.

 

Posted // November 3,2011 at 09:37 - I too am tired of crappy customer service as it seems to have become the norm. I complain about it often. I never return to a business where I have been treated badly. I've always voted with my dollar.

If you want a cheap burger and want good drive-thru service (or good walk-in service), I'd suggest heading to Arctic Circle on 9th south. Those guys are always friendly and helpful, even coming out after you've received your order to ask how everything is and can I do anything more for you. I get FAR better service at this Arctic Circle than I do at Copper Onion. I wouldn't go to Copper Onion if those burgers weren't so damn good.

 

Posted // November 3,2011 at 09:29 - Damn straight, brother!

 

REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
Posted // November 2,2011 at 12:56 We had a similar experience at Red Rock on a Saturday afternoon. Our waitress was less than thrilled to be there and came off as uninterested and bitchy. She also got our order wrong and took forever to fix it. I am definitely sticking to downtown.

 

REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
Posted // October 9,2011 at 20:13 My husband and had a great meal here yesterday. I had the meatball grinder which was very tasty(the meatballs are huge!), served with a side of coleslaw. My husband really enjoyed the Chicken Schnitzel with a the double IPA. The servers were attentive.
We've also enjoyed the downtown location several times. Some of my favorite dishes include; Eggs in Purgatory, Fish N' Chips and the Red Rock Burger.

 

REPLY TO THIS COMMENT
Posted // September 29,2011 at 19:09 I've seen the same attitude in other places. Like they are so lax and unaware and I think if this is looking bad, it must have everything to do with Corporate. Either they are being so hard on the people under them, the people under dont care which looks bad as you saw. For instance I was at Chilis and the bar staff not attentive. Im thinking maybe what's happening on a global level of where religion made a mess of things, good service is just one of the things that go wrong in times of stress and exhaustion esp if the Corporations are putting on alot of pressure. The problem is poor communication. The company I am with could do alot better thus raising their sales but who am I to say how they want to attract clients. I guess if the food is good, people will come unless the staff is just totally unbearable. I would hate to think what you say about the staff could hurt their business since the seafood platter sounds good enough to bypass your review. The squid looked divine! Is it?
Celeste

 

Ted
Posted // September 30,2011 at 14:34 - Yes, everything on the seafood platter was great, including the calamari.

 

 
 
 
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