Went here to celebrate a special occasion with some friends and I've always heard very mixed reviews - everything from "best restaurant in Utah" to "so bad we left our food on the table and went home". Log Haven definitely has a specific feel - from the waterfall in the parking lot to the big fireplace in front, you certainly feel like you're much deeper into the mountains than you actually are when you visit Log Haven at night. I was also pleased to make it up without any moose encounters on Millcreek Canyon road.
First course was a local organic farm egg, polenta ravioli, sofrito dish topped with house pancetta, parmesan cream, truffle popcorn and green garlic oil. Sounds fantastic right? This was the fail of the night. The egg was burnt (hard cooked yolk? really?). The parmesan cream was overdone and the ravioli were nothing special. I really liked the green garlic oil...
Next I had a small portion of the chicory frisee salad (hazel nuts, brandied raisins, apple smoked Beehive cheddar, cider vinaigrette). Several of the people in our group went for this salad and it got mixed reviews. The greens were great and I thought the brandied raisins were a nice sweet in there, but the cheese was the wrong choice for this combo and the cider dressing was also pretty sweet. I'd give the salad a 6/10.
Main course was the grilled Ballard Farms pork loin topped with ricotta gratin and dried apricot chutney, served with yam fingerlings and wilted chard. The food was good, but it trended towards steakhouse fare when I was expecting some more creativity based on the menu and ingredients. What I got was massive pork loin cooked very nicely but hurt by too much ricotta topping and chutney. The chard was good and the yams were slightly under cooked (crunchy isn't my favorite preparation for fingerling potatoes, but hey).
One of my dining compatriots ordered the nightly special, which was a monkfish sauced with a tomato and fennel based sauce. She wasn't keen on the dish, but her husband was happy to take care of the left overs so I'd say it got mixed reviews as well.
I had been warned off of the desserts so I didn't spring for a sweet course, although those who did were very pleased. At the table we tried a frozen coconut custard and a lava cake (topped with salted caramel ice cream and caramel corn). Both were very good. We drank Luigi Bosca Malbec with the meal, although Log Haven does offer a $15 corkage fee and that would be the way to go in the future.
The verdict? I was neither blown away nor particularly disappointed, but I won't be back. My food was not bad, and it was fun to drive up the canyon for a dinner in the mountains. That being said, this is the type of place my grandparents would have enjoyed. Huge portions of rich food and marginal execution by the chefs.