Comings and Goings, Regulars and Shorts

Comings & Goings: March 2014

By Katherine Pioli

Earth Goods closes; Sunny Strasburg returns; Congratulations to Pago & Liberty Heights Fresh; Dancehall reggae; Skis & cheese; Social investors show love; Chapul news; Dzogchen retreat; Tea House TEAramisu; Dippers & roasters of local chocolate; Bike or stroll ro Cucina; Inquiry Cards; Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey.

by Katherine Pioli


Earth Goods General Store closes

Last September CATALYST reported that Earth Goods General Store was relocating from 9th East at 13th South to a smaller location downtown. But, even with a change of scene and size, the locally owned, eco-loving retail store was not able to survive.

With February spelling the store’s last month of operation, owner Thom Benedict thanked all of his customers for their pa­tron­age and encouraged everyone to continue buying local, fair trade and green. We wish Thom all the best.

Social investors show love

The Community Foundation of Utah, a philanthropic organization, has proved that it stands behind its mission to support and invest in innovative, sustainable programs and services that promote positive social changes in Utah. And what better way to show that commitment than with a nice chunk of change?

At the First Annual Utah Fund Social Investors Forum, held last month, the Community Foundation gave $20,000 each to the Green Urban Lunchbox and the Salt Lake Bicycle Collective to expand on their sustainable business models.

The two programs were chosen out of a pool of 150 applicants. “We would love to see all these worthy projects funded,” said Jeramy Lund, Board Chair. If you agree with Jeramy and would like to lend your support, consider making a donation.

Read more about the Community Foundation of Utah and how you can help support its goals:

Dzogchen retreat

It only makes sense that a retreat, designed to give practitioners “practical skills for coping with the stressors of modern life,” would be held in an urban setting.

The two-day Dzogchen retreat, April 5 and 6, allows attendees the flexibility to return home and take care of their families at night. It’s the perfect chance for those interested in Buddhism, but with limited time and resources, to finally delve into a few days of in-depth study without having to totally check out.

The program for this second annual Dzogchen Urban Spring Retreat at the Episcopal Church Center in downtown Salt Lake City will focus on The Four Immeasur­a­bles: expanding love, compassion, joy and equanimity. The retreat, from 9am to 5pm each day, will be led by Upasaka Bodhisat­tva Sean D. Young, a native Utahn and Guiding Dharma Teacher currently living and teaching near Eugene, Oregon.

Contact retreat director Joe Evans, evansjoe108@ for more information.

Skis and cheese?

Deer Valley Resort in Park City is now the home of award-winning, hand-crafted artisanal cheeses, thanks to Belgium native and cheese expert Corinne Cornet-Coniglio. Cornet-Coniglio comes to the job with a deep knowledge of European cheeses, extensive training in cheese making and goat husbandry and experience as owner and manager of a fromagerie in Colorado.

With her help, Deer Valley is already producing cheese made from the milk of goats and cows pastured in the Heber and Ogden valleys. The new cheeses include Moon Shadow, an ash-ripened goat cheese; Meadow Lark, a double cream cheese; and Triple Truffle, a Camembert-style brie. They are being served in Deer Valley restaurants and are for purchase at the Deer Valley Grocery and Café.

Dippers and roasters of local chocolate

For those who have confused chocolatier with chocolate-maker, sweet tooth cookbook author David Lebovitz comes to the rescue. In his blog, Lebovitz explains that chocolatiers make confections—dipping chocolates, sprinkling them with nuts and other delights. Chocolate-makers, on the other hand, buy cocoa beans, roast them and grind them into chocolate but rarely turn it into the finished product that we eat. There are lots of chocolatiers, says Lebovitz, but few chocolate-makers, a job that requires a lot of knowledge and expensive specialized equipment.

When Lebovitz wrote his blog post in 2007, he counted only about 16 chocolate-makers in all of the United States.

Since then, the number of chocolate-related businesses has grown and six must-taste Utah-owned-and-run chocolatiers and chocolate-makers are on that list.

For local chocolate-makers that also turn their product into ready-to-eat (or drink) delights, try: Mezzo, Amano Chocolate, Solstice Chocolate and Millcreek Cacao Roasters (the same people behind Millcreek Coffee).

For a local, hand-made chocolate confection try: Hatch Family Chocolates, Chocolate Conspiracy and Chocolot Artisan Confections.

Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey

Astrophysicist and author Neil deGrasse Tyson is in demand. Tickets for his presentation at the annual Tanner Lecture on Human Values at the University of Utah’s Kingsbury Hall were gone within two hours, a full month before the event.

But you can still see deGrasse Tyson if you tune into our local Fox television station, channel 13, beginning March 9 as he hosts the premiere of a new series, Cosmos: A Space-Time Odessey. The documentary, a sequel to the original 13-part series aired in 1980 and hosted by Carl Sagan, aims to make science-themed television more interesting and accessible to a wider audience. Check Fox channel 13 listings for local time of broadcast.

Sunny’s back in town

Salt Lake psychotherapist Sunny Strasburg, MA, LMFT, recently returned home with her husband (the artist Martin Stensaas) and their three children after living for a year in Costa Rica.

“It was interesting to remove myself from most of my external validators and routines, and live in a place that’s unfamiliar,” she tells us. “The first several months, I shed many layers of what was not truly ‘me.’ What remained is a new sense of purpose and a strong sense of what is important to me. My work as a Jungian and marriage and family therapist has become clearer and more purposeful.”

She kept in touch with friends and clients via her blog, in which she wrote about life as an expat living in a mountainous rural area, learning about nature, connecting more deeply with her family and delving into her own psyche.

Strasburg will again affiliate with the Web of Life Wellness Center, which relocated last year from the 9th & 9th neighborhood to 508 E South Temple.

Strasburg has a Master of Arts degree from Pacifica Graduate Institute in Coun­seling Psychology with a specialty in Depth and Jungian Psychotherapy and specializes in Gottman Couples Therapy. Also a professional artist (several of her works have appeared on CATALYST’s covers), she often uses art therapy in her psychotherapy practice.,

Congratulations to Pago and Liberty Heights Fresh

Congratulations to Pago for winning “best restaurant” award from Salt Lake Magazine. The five-year-old restaurant, located in the 9th and 9th neighborhood, has been a pioneer in the farm-to-table movement. Pago was started by Scott Evans (a former CATALYST food and wine writer).

The magazine gave their Community Service award to Steven Rosenberg of Liberty Heights Fresh (located at 13th South and 9th East) for championing local food long before it became a trend. Rosenberg opened his grocery on 13th South and 9th East in 1993.

Dancehall reggae classes

Nyesha Hamil (aka MekaDayz) has been teaching Reggae Dancehall classes in Park City for several years, at locations including the PC Fitness Co-Op and Silver Mountain Sports Club & Spa.

We have finally convinced her to begin teaching in Salt Lake City, too.

You’ll find her Saturday afternoons at UrbanArts Dance and Fitness Studio in Sugar House, starting March 1.

Jamaican-born, Meka comes by her training authentically. The style translates to a mixture of hip-hop, African and reggae—a combination that provides you with stunning moves you can bring to any dance floor.

Meka has a talent for making anyone feel more coordinated and supple. “I’m here to teach and serve you. I love what I do!’ she tells us. Drop-ins are $11 (first class is $6).

MekaDays DanceHall classes 3:30p,Sats. UrbanArts Dance and Fitness, 25 E. Kensington Ave., Suite F.;

Tea House TEAramisu

The Emperor’s Tea, originally an online-only tea provider, now also has a physical location called Tea House TEAramisu in Millcreek.

In 1999, MC Rivetti and Jason Woodland found there was a need for producers of high quality loose leaf tea that distribute to the U.S. They now offer over 160 tea varieties plus health and wellness products

TEAramisu offers handmade Italian pastries as well as an inviting environment with a “Frank Sinatra” vibe, says Rivetti. Visit their four themed rooms: the living room, zen room, emperor’s room and the lounge.

Tea House TEAramisu, 929 East 4500 South.,

Bike or stroll to Cucina for dinner

A few years ago when the stock market plunged, Dean Pierose, owner of Cucina Deli in the Avenues, announced “Free Coffee Mondays.” He would give you a free coffee—latté, mocha, whatever you wanted—as long as the Dow Jones lurked below 10,000 points. The market’s machinations were tracked monthly on a large wall chart. “We did that for about a year,” he recollects.

Now Pierose has a new idea for shining a light on an important issue while making customers smile: In support of Utah’s continued efforts for cleaner air, he is offering a free “small” plate from their dinner menu throughout March to each party that arrives for dinner without driving. “Grab that Razor or Pogo stick and support clean air on your way to dinner!” he says.

The Avenues and adjoining University neighborhood are walkable (and, with minimal planning for traversing hills, bikeable). There’s a bike rack, and ample space for well-behaved dogs.

Polenta fries, cauliflower, papas frites, duck carnitas, or Brussels sprouts are offered.

Cucina Deli, 1026 E. 2nd Ave. Dine in or take out. Patio (sun sets at 7:20p on Mar. 31). 801.322.3055.

Pick a card—an Inquiry Card

Sylvia Nibley, well-known to Salt Lake’s holistic community, is an entrepreneur and a teacher with a love of good questions.

Eighteen years ago, in a flash of inspiration, a detailed vision came to her for a new kind of meditation tool and game—a deck of cards that offers questions, not answers. Questions such as: What can I experience more fully? What do I really want? What can I celebrate?

It took time and the right partner—graphic designer Jim Hayes—to bring the project to life. Together, using nature photography and a teleidoscope (like a kaleidoscope, only with an outer image, instead of inner objects), they created and paired 46 mandala-like images with 48 questions and printed them on hexagonally shaped cards, accompanied by a colorful booklet offering useful information on lots of ways to use the cards.

Inquiry Cards. $24. Available at Golden Braid Books, Dancing Cranes, Healing Mountain Massage School, Lotus, Cameron Wellness Center, Weller BookWorks and online at where a discount is available for three or more decks.

Keith Stevens, OMD, moves

Keith Stevens, Doctor of Oriental Medicine, has moved his practice from the 12th East 28th South area to old Sandy. He has a new telephone number as well.

Keith Stevens, OMD, 8728 S 120 E. Tel. 801.255.7016.

Café Supernatural closes; Sage’s is blossoming

Cafe SuperNatural, located within Prana Yoga at Trolley Square, closed last month. The restaurant, providing organic, locally grown, gluten-free raw foods and superfoods was owned by Ian Brandt, who also owns Sage’s, Vertical Diner and Cali’s. If you haven’t been to Sage’s at their new location, go. We liked it before and now it’s much, much better.

Sage’s Cafe, 234 W. 900 S.

Contemplate new flooring, get a free T-shirt

Underfoot Floors, located on Third West just south of the 17th South Costco, has T-shirts with their cool barefoot logo on them. Come by, think about your unremarkable floor, look around at the Earth-friendly options (cork, bamboo, hardwood, Marmoleum, carpet)… and say, “Hey! I saw your ad in CATALYST and have been meaning to stop by!” They will give you a shirt. And maybe you will like it enough to upgrade your flooring.

Underfoot Floors, 1900 S. 300 West. 801.467.6636.

Everything’s coming up crickets: Chapul news

Since CATALYST wrote about the Salt Lake foodie enterprise Chapul Cricket Bars, the company has seen a lot of exciting new developments. Suddenly on the edge of a new food fad and with business picking up, Chapul has launched a new website; received mention in Edible, a new book by Daniella Martin; and revamped their bars replacing the agave sweetener with healthier raw organic honey.

This article was originally published on March 1, 2014.