Cafe Diablo, Torrey, Utah

From the sublime (Mesa Grill) to the ridiculous. I went with John and our friends to Café Diablo, a highly rated restaurant near Capitol Reef National Park. I was psyched. I had been eating under Utah rules for a long time. Perhaps I should have waited. Here’s what we ordered and what we thought.
Rattlesnake cakes – These cakes were either overpowered by the black beans and cilantro, rattlesnake is really subtle or there was no snake.
Firecrackers – These were deep fried items, some spicy, some not; all heavily breaded.
Empinadas – These were filled with Cotija cheese and sweet potatoes and were quite good.
Crown rack of glazed ribs – Three of us had this. They were supposed to be slow roasted in chipotle, molasses and rum glaze over a bed of sweet potatoes. In the center of the crown was a large fried potato stick served at room temperature. This made it greasy and inedible. The sweet potatoes were grainy and awful. The crown rack was neither gooey and sweet nor tart or anything other than a bunch of steamed ribs.
Pumpkin seed trout – A little overcooked with a great mélange of vegetables which didn’t really go with the trout. Oddly, instead of the wild rice pancake underneath, there was the non-rattlesnake cake.

Add to this, the undrinkable house red wine and the low level of ambiance, you come up with a restaurant that you hoped so much for and delivered so little.

Oh Utah, Utah, you are so beautiful and friendly. And I know you are overwhelmingly LDS. But there are those of us who want to retire here who crave fine restaurants and a wine list. Couldn’t you compromise a bit and try to make things a little more congenial for us? We would both prosper.

Table consensus – D

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