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Restaurant Happenings - November 2005

Milt’s
356 South 400 East Moab UT 84532
435- 259-7424

Milt’s Stop & Eat -
A Local Favorite since 1954
Ann Stewart


Milt's in the 1950s

Over fifty years ago, the main highway through Moab turned east on Center, then south on 400 East and then curved onto Millcreek Drive just in front of Milt’s Stop and Eat. Milt’s opened on Labor Day 1954, providing a classic diner environment where travelers, uranium miners and locals could get a quick meal. Today, Milt’s is still a classic diner, one of the oldest businesses in Moab. It is still a local operation, currently owned by Daniel and Asa Wright. True to the idea of an “oldie but goodie,” the prices are very reasonable. Where else can you get a cheeseburger with really fresh beef for $2.10, a malted milk shake for $3.75, a cone for $.75 or a complete dinner for $7.50?

Even though the highway with its trucks and heavy traffic no longer goes by Milt’s, it doesn’t matter. Milt’s has been “discovered” by tourists and the media. Tucked behind Dave’s Corner Market on 400 East, Milt’s has a large parking lot, a shaded picnic patio, and a take-out window. Inside, the same eight stools and worn counter top of years gone by impressed the New York Times reporter who wrote October 14, 2005, “In a town where scenery looms large, it’s easy to drive by the unassuming Milt’s Stop & Eat. But this little diner, which has been doling out fresh chili and shakes since 1954, comes through where it counts. Pull up to the counter, where years of local elbows have worn perfect white circles into the surface.” A recent National Geographic Adventure Magazine also mentions Milt’s in an article on biking in Moab. Consequently, Milt’s has become a stop for many on their way to ride the Slick Rock Bike Trail.

True to tradition, however, the people who really love Milt’s are the locals. They know that all the beef used is 21-day dry-aged from The Old Geezer Meat Shop in Moab. Milt’s hamburgers have long been reported as the best in town. Chili, especially as winter comes on, is another favorite with Milt’s customers. As the menu says, “locals have loved this made-fresh daily, whole pinto bean chili con carne for fifty years.” It’s a “Milt’s special recipe – as full of history as it is flavor!” This special recipe chili has made Milt’s chili burger famous around the world.

Milt’s is also famous for their fresh cut French fries, a rare item in most restaurants.
Other intriguing menu items include Frito Pie, “Fritos, layered in a bowl, topped with shredded cheese and smothered in Milt’s Famous Chili.” Or how about the Fishburger made with “delicious Haddock served on a toasted bun with fresh lettuce and our Special Recipe Housemade Tartar Sauce?” The Fresh Banana Shake is another favorite.

Milt’s Stop and Eat was originally owned and operated by Milt & Audrey Galbraith who ran it for twenty-seven years. Milt and Audrey sold the business to John and Sonya Sensenbrenner, who operated the business for over 20 years. Today’s owner-managers are Daniel and Asa Wright who have both had experience in the restaurant business. Daniel’s mother Lola used to operate the Poplar Place, and he grew up around the food service industry. Asa met Daniel when they both worked at La Hacienda Restaurant. Today, Asa’s mother Penny also helps out at Milt’s.

Milt’s is open all winter from 11:00 am to 9 pm for lunch and dinner. It’s a cozy place to meet friends and enjoy good food in the classic style of the ‘50’s.

Milt’s is located at 356 South 400 East and may be reached at 259-7424 for delicious take-out!

      

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