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Sugar House Journal

After More than 30 Years, the Dodo is Still a Crowd Pleaser

Nov 06, 2015 12h32 ● By Bryan Scott

By Aimee L. Cook

Since 1981 the Dodo Restaurant has been feeding the masses. Like the unique bird from the island of Mauritius it is named after, the Dodo has a unique menu that regular customers and newcomers alike rave about. Owned by Bryon Loveall, also owner of The Porcupine Restaurant in Cottonwood Heights, The Dodo has a definite following. For people that visit the restaurant on a regular basis, the menu items, carefully prepared by Chef Mateo Juarez, pretty much stay the same tried-and-true dishes people have come to crave. 

Take the roasted tomato polenta cakes ($8.99) for example. Served on a bed of cool avocado spread and topped with a spicy chipotle aioli and a fresh pine nut relish, the combination of flavors packed into these small polenta cakes is a taste treat.

The house-smoked wings ($11.00) come either based in traditional wing sauce, or their house barbecue sauce, or a combination of both, which is the way to go. The smoky wings are tender, juicy and have the right amount of kick. 

The Dodo is best known for its desserts, as well as meats, such as the smoked turkey sandwich ($9.99). All meats are smoked in-house, and the turkey is done to perfection. Thin slices are served on a garlic sourdough roll with a side of the Dodo’s signature barbecue sauce. This sandwich is fresh, flavorful and delicious. I was unsure of the barbecue sauce on the side as a dipper, like an au jus, but I was pleasantly surprised at the enhancement it provided to the sandwich.

Soups are also house-made. The creamy mushroom soup ($3.99) was both creamy and loaded with mushrooms. The hearty soup is served with a hard roll and side salad, and the combination makes for a nice, lighter option. 

You can’t talk about the Dodo without mentioning the fantastic desserts prepared daily by Ramone Montelongo, who has been the pastry chef for over 25 years. Six dessert staples are available every day. From the carrot cake to the Tollhouse pie ($7.99), the pure decadence of his creations are sure to make you find some room for at least a bite.  I tried the Tollhouse pie, warmed with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, and it was divine. A sweet crust surrounds the soft, warm, gooey center, and the ice cream provides the right amount of coolness to make each bite worth the calories. 

Overall, the food and the service were great, even though the restaurant was a bustle. Manager Dan Washburn can be seen making the rounds throughout the crowd, ensuring that everything is prepared to your likeness and taking a personal interest in your dining experience. 

 The Dodo in Sugar House is located at 1355 East 2100 South or call 801-486-(BIRD)