Food Network serves another Silver Star Cafe episode | ParkRecord.com

Food Network serves another Silver Star Cafe episode

The Silver Star Cafe owners Lisa and Jeff Ward are honored their restaurant will be featured in an episode of “Triple D Nation” that will air at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Friday on the Food Network. This is the second time the Silver Star Cafe will be featured on a Food Network show. The first time was in 2014 on “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.” (Tanzi Propst/Park Record)
Tanzi Propst/Park Record

What: “Triple D Nation”

When: 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 10

Where: Food Network

Web: thesilverstarcafe.com and foodnetwork.com

The Food Network is asking the Silver Star Cafe for seconds.

Five years after the network first showcased the Park City restaurant on “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives,” hosted by Emmy-winning restaurateur Guy Fieri, the network’s film crews returned to The Silver Star Cafe, located at 1825 Three Kings Drive, in October to shoot a segment for “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives’ spinoff “Triple D Nation.”

The program will air at 7 p.m. and at 10 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 10. The Silver Star Cafe’s segment is titled ‘A Little Lighter.”

“We’re the third restaurant, and only one from Utah, that will be in this program,” said Lisa Ward, who co-owns the restaurant with her husband Jeff.

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In “Triple D Nation,” Food Network crews return to some of their favorite places that have been shown on “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives,” she said.

“The difference is that this was a little more interview-heavy than the first time,” Lisa said. “The program is more retrospective and like a follow-up to see how being on the show in the first time affected the business.”

This time around, the network also wanted to focus on some new, lighter menu items, Jeff said.

“They decided to show some of our vegetarian and vegan sides of things,” he said.

The fare shown includes roasted jackfruit tacos with roasted red pepper-cashew crema, cabbage, tomatillo pico de gallo from the lunch menu, and fried Brussels sprouts with fish sauce caramel, Fresno chili, garlic chips and lime appetizer from the dinner menu, Lisa said. “We did ask if we could put out some other types of dishes, so we made our seared elk burger and spice-crusted mahi mahi,” she said.

In addition to all of these dishes being gluten-free, the food sourced for the menus contain no GMOs and are procured from sustainable sources, Jeff said.

“We try to make sure our seafood is wild-caught or from sustainable fisheries,” he said. “We check with the purveyors and check with the Monterey Bay Aquarium to see the ratings of the purveyors.”

The meat used in the elk burgers comes from a ranch in Fillmore, and the Wards also work with local farmers for the produce during the summer, Jeff said.

The Wards also harvest their own elderberries that grow wild on the mountain that rises next to the restaurant, and Jeff makes an elderberry gastrique that is used in cocktails and sauces, according to Lisa.

“We try to make sure all of our menu items are authentic and organic,” she said. “We think of the health and comfort of the people in the community. They are busy. They hike, bike and ski, and they don’t want that feeling of heaviness in our bodies when we go out to do things.”

The Food Network contacted the Wards on Sept. 7 to discuss the “Triple D Nation” episode.

That day happened to be their son Keenan’s wedding, Lisa said.

“We got the email and I wrote, ‘Yes! But I can’t talk now,’ immediately, because when the Food Network contacts you, you respond,” Lisa said with a laugh. “Once we were able to finally sit down and talk, the ball started rolling pretty quickly.”

Crews showed up to film for one day on Thursday, Oct. 10, and it was very different from the three-day shoot in 2014.

“When they first came five years ago, we had to close for three days, because they wanted to protect Guy’s privacy,” Lisa said. “They didn’t want anyone wanting autographs and interrupting the shoot.”

The restaurant stayed open during the recent shoot because Fieri wasn’t part of it.

“We’re not sure if he’s doing some voiceovers or things like that this time, but there was one guy on the production team who was with them when they first came in 2014, so it was fun to see him again,” Lisa said.

During October’s filming crews asked the Wards about things they remembered about the 2014 visit, Jeff said.

“I remembered as they were setting things up, they had to tape up a window in the kitchen that looks right out at the (Silver Star) chairlift,” he said.

The crew blocked it out because the light was so strong, but when Fieri walked in and looked around, he said, “Get that stuff down, because that’s the story,” according to Jeff.

“It was funny, because the director of photography then turned the camera around on himself and said, ‘Being the DP of the shoot, there was a reason why we did this,’ and defended himself,” Jeff said.

Lisa remembered the engaging interview with Fieri.

“He is a very big presence, but he didn’t really talk with us off camera, because he was working his process,” she said. “When he did talk with us during the shoot, everything was unscripted, off-the-cuff, intelligent and super witty. He really does his research and homework about the properties he visits. He is very supportive. He genuinely cares.”

One thing that has changed in the past five years is the Wards’ son Keenan.

“Back in 2014, there are several shots of this kid with shaggy dark hair delivering food to tables,” Lisa said. “Since then, he’s got a degree in hospitality management, and now, he’s our general manager.”

The Wards are honored the Food Network wanted to return to The Silver Star Cafe, which celebrates its 10th anniversary in March.

“This is such a tough business, and in a seasonal environment like Park City, it takes everything you’ve got to make a restaurant a success,” Lisa said. “To have media support at the level of the Food Network makes all the difference, because it tells our story worldwide. The fact that the Food Network still thinks we’re doing something viable, interesting, fresh and new gives us the confidence that we can sustain this.”

“I respect the Food Network, this show and their vision,” Jeff said. “So for them to choose us is confirmation that we’re on the right track. We’re excited and pleased to be part of the ‘Triple D’ family.“


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