There are plenty of fish—big fish—in the Ogden River, Justin Gumm says, pointing to it from the Slackwater Pub & Pizzeria patio. The former fly-fishing guide gestures the length of one with his hands, but knows most folks would simply rather catch a Uinta Cutthroat Pale Ale from his bar.
Nestled along the Ogden River Parkway, the restaurant serves delicious pizza and has a brew roster—10 taps and over 100 bottled beers—unrivaled in Ogden. The pleasant little patio has been vital for business—with 120 seats, versus the 40 inside—since the restaurant opened on June 1. With winter approaching like a strong current, however, Gumm and co-owner Krissann Smith needed to find an eddy in order to continue to cast their business line.
They originally wanted to build a yurt, but have decided on a permanent structure with removable windows, which was approved by Ogden city officials in October. “Without this, I think we would have had to change our business plan; we would have really had to streamline everything,” Gumm says.
They’ll leave the construction to the experts, although they did build an off-the-grid cabin in Alaska over a three-year period, which Gumm describes as “crazy.” “I’m not going to do that again,” he says.
They have used past experience, however, to craft a menu that highlights—with a twist—the “big fish” of their 20-year food-service pedigree. For pizza, try the California Sunrise (Green Goddess base, roasted chicken, peppered bacon, sun-dried tomato, avocado and spinach) or the Pulled Pork BBQ Bonanza (smoked pork, peppers, red onion and sweet Thai coleslaw).
The new sheltered patio—set to open the week of Thanksgiving—will host live music four nights a week and will continue to be an excellent spot to catch more brews than fish.
SLACKWATER PUB & PIZZERIA
1895 Washington Blvd., Ogden