Dining | Food Matters: Irish pubs & morons with mobile phones 

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The MacCool’s empire is about to double in size. Owners Scott Schlisman and Mic Warner are on track to open new MacCool’s Public House locations in South Jordan and Ogden. Obviously, MacCool’s combination of great Irish-inspired food and drink combined with a fun atmosphere is a winning one. Rumor has it that there’s even interest from Boise in having a MacCool’s there. One of my own favorite pastimes is to tuck into MacCool’s scrumptious lamb ribs, corned beef & cabbage, a cold Guinness and a game of American shuffleboard. It doesn’t get much better than that.

• One downside of eating in public places as often as a restaurant critic does is the constant exposure to morons with mobile phones and Bluetooth headsets. Not that I’m a Luddite; I own a Blackberry Pearl, and I love it. But I also know when it’s polite to turn the thing off, and I know how to engage in conversation during dinner without the use of an electronic device. Well, if you’re as annoyed by the use mobile phones in restaurants as I am, here are a couple of cell-phone-free dining options: Park City’s Chenez restaurant has a sign on the door saying, “No cell phones, please.” This gives would-be patrons the option of dining elsewhere if they can’t keep their paws off their phones during dinner. Kudos to Chenez’ owner Joe Jafarian for having the balls to restrict cell phone use in his restaurant. The other cell phone-free eating space I’m aware of is Log Haven restaurant where (full disclosure) my wife is employed. It’s not that the folks at Log Haven have instituted a no-phone policy but simply the fact that, up in Millcreek Canyon where Log Haven is located, there is no cell-phone service.

Quote of the week: Playwrights are like men who have been dining for a month in an Indian restaurant. After eating curry night after night, they deny the existence of asparagus. —Peter Ustinov

Send Food Matters information to teds@xmission.com. Hear Ted over the airwaves on Sound Bites, Thursdays on KSL NewsRadio 1160 AM and 102.7 FM.

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