It’s early in the morning; stores in City Creek mall aren’t even open yet. The food court, usually a noisy bustling maelstrom of shoppers and kids, is silent. Most of the restaurants don’t open until 10 when employees show up, roll up the doors and start heating up the food. But over in Bocata, a unique restaurant in Salt Lake City (there are no other locations), cooks are at work, baking bread, roasting chicken and lamb, and seasoning pork for their version of porchetta: a pork shoulder rubbed with toasted fennel seeds, coriander seeds, white pepper and sea salt, roasted with carrots, celery, chopped fennel and garlic. Sliced thin and served with a salsa verde made of garlic, Italian parsley, capers and anchovy—you end up with a sandwich that is definitely not fast food. “We call it slow food, fast,” says Brooks.

Bocata, City Creek, 28 State St., SLC, 801-355-3538

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