Craig Visser, who took over ownership of the Mount Ogden Grill last fall, believes that, although running a restaurant is a hard way to make a living, some people feel drawn to it.
"It's a hard business, but it gets in your blood," he said.
Visser and his wife, Phyllis Visser, own the Athenian, a Greek restaurant on Historic 25th Street. In November 2011, they decided to take on a second restaurant, The Mount Ogden Grill, giving it a completely new international menu.
Some of their favorite Greek dishes overlap the two restaurants, but the new place also offers soups, salads, seafood, burgers, pastas and a variety of breakfast options.
Local college students have already nicknamed the new local hub "The MOG."
The Vissers enjoy reaching out to the community by catering events with Weber State University athletics and charitable fundraisers for the Red Cross and the Humane Society.
One of their favorite dishes, the Lamb Chops ($14.95), are seasoned with oregano and fresh garlic, served with baked or mashed potatoes or rice pilaf, soup or salad, and a dinner roll or pita bread.
"People come in just for our salmon, lamb chops and pork chops," Phyllis Visser said.
Another specialty is the English-style Fish & Chips ($8.50), made from tavern-style battered cod, served with a green salad or soup. Every day, they offer three homemade soups ($2) in varieties such as clam chowder, lentil, or roasted red bell pepper with macaroni and Italian sausage.
The restaurant has become a popular spot to hold meetings since there are two separate rooms that can be rented by groups free of charge when they order off the menu. There is also a beautiful outdoor patio.
The Vissers designed the menu to include lots of vegetarian and health-conscious options. For example, the Hummus with pita bread ($4.25) and Berry Good Salad ($8.99), with fresh berries, candied nuts, gorgonzola cheese and homemade poppy seed dressing, are healthful selections.
They also worked hard on their breakfast menu, paying attention to details such as using extra-thick-sliced bacon. Their Homemade Buttermilk Pancakes ($2.99) and French Toast ($1.99) come with fresh fruits and berries upon request.
Since all of their dishes are made from scratch, they accommodate special diets.
Craig Visser, who suffers from food allergies, said they take allergies quite seriously.
MOUNT OGDEN GRILL
- Address: 440 E. 4400 South, South Ogden
- Hours: 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Saturday
- Phone: 801-475-4611