LINDON — Eating fancy-yet-down-to-earth burgers while listening to classic rock and watching workers assemble custom Harley-Davidson motorcycles sure isn't your stereotypical Utah County dining experience.
Sure is a good one, though. At least, that was the consensus of our family after spending an enjoyable hour or so at Marley's, a "gourmet slider" restaurant built into the big old Harley dealership at the former Geneva Steel site.
Sliders, as most of you likely know, are small burgers. They're also very trendy, though Marley's manages to give the impression through sheer attitude of a place that's been around, slinging sliders, for decades.
That's not true, of course, but I appreciated the classic vibe, accentuated by tabletops of vintage bottle caps and, of course, the classic lines and logos of all those gleaming motorcycles (a souvenir shop leading off the dining space also has just about every item that could possibly sport a Harley logo, and early risers can have a "mechanics burrito" if they arrive for breakfast).
We toured the menu fairly extensively, though I admit that for budgetary reasons we detoured around the filet mignon and salmon sliders, which cost a lot more than the regular ones.
A word about portion sizes: most adults will eat two sliders, three if they're hearty eaters and one if they have a light appetite. Marley's offers its sliders in various combos, from a slider, side and drink for one person to a 12-slider combo for groups. We went with the "3/4 Brick," a combo of nine sliders of our choice that was more than enough for the two adults and four kids in our group, especially considering the hot, crisp and delicious shoestring fries we had to go with them.
Everything we ate was good, from the classic appeal of the basic cheeseburger, which my husband had with salty-sweet bacon on top, to the more far-out "burgers," like hot dogs and pulled turkey.
The hot dog, butterflied, grilled and served with oozy cheese and earthy sautéed mushrooms, was unexpected and delightful, while the turkey, pulled off the bone and served with creamy avocado and bacon, was a bit like a really excellent club sandwich.
My favorite was the "Handsome Rob" slider, a crinkly-edged, well seared patty topped with grilled onions, cheese, bacon and just enough buffalo sauce to liven things up. The sauce, kicky but not overpowering, was an inspired touch.1 comment on this story
For dessert, we shared cups of super rich and silky frozen custard, arguing laughingly over which was better, the mellow vanilla or the just-tart black cherry. We finished them off before we came to a conclusion.
By the way, I'm still looking for readers to send in their favorite local tastes of summer for an upcoming column, so if you have a particular dish, food or restaurant that says "Summer on the Wasatch" to you, e-mail it to me.
Breakfast $4.99, sliders $2.50-$6.49, combos $5.99-$24.99, tenders and salad $5.99-$8.99, custard $1.49-$1.99.
Marley's Gourmet Sliders
Where: 555 S. Geneva Road, Lindon
Summer hours: 9 a.m.-9 p.m., daily
Wheelchair access: Easy
Stacey Kratz is a freelance writer who reviews restaurants for the Deseret News.