There’s something so nostalgic about the drive-in restaurants from the 1950s. We love to think about what it was like to hang out there in high school, flirting with boys, or working as a car hop. And the food! Juicy burgers, crisp fries (with homemade fry sauce, of course) and thick, creamy shakes. Many of the drive-ins in larger towns were replaced by national chains (though we still managed to find a few), and Utah’s small towns seem to have kept theirs. Here’s a list of some of the best.
1. Burger Bar, Roy
Burger Bar has been around since 1956, and it's still a local favorite. In addition to the standard fare, this place offers up an exotic meat of the month. Try an alligator burger, elk burger, camel burger and more! This is a walk-up restaurant without any seating, so you'll take your burger to go. 5291 S. 1900 W., Roy.
2. Call's Drive In, Perry
Good, old-fashioned food served up to you in your car! 1650 S. Hwy. 89 Perry, UT.
3. Cluff's Car Hop, Fillmore
Why eat at a national chain when you could dine at this 1950s-era drive in? The burgers, fries, onion rings and shakes are all classics. 260 N. Main Street, Fillmore.
4. Hires Big H, Salt Lake City
Don Hale opened the first Hires in 1959, and the downtown Salt Lake City location still offers car hop service (in addition to its dining room). You've got to have the Big H, and of course...the root beer! 425 S. 700 E., Salt Lake City.
5. Iceberg Drive Inn, Millcreek
Iceberg has been serving up these legendary shakes in the same location since 1960. The little walk-up place also has a few small booths inside, but there's nothing like sitting at the outdoor tables with a cold shake on a warm, summer day. 3900 S. 9th E., Salt Lake City (Millcreek).
6. Kirt's Family Drive Inn, Ogden
This family restaurant still serves up food the old-fashioned way - with a car hop right to your car window! 1974 N. 400 E., Ogden.
7. Labeau's Drive Inn, Garden City
If you're at Labeau's during the summer, be prepared to wait - everyone wants their raspberry shake! The burgers and fries are good here, too. 69 N. Bear Lake Blvd., Garden City.
8. Larsen's Frostop, St. George
The place has been open since 1965, and it might just have the best fry sauce in the state. 858 E. Saint George Blvd., St. George.
9. Nemo's Drive Thru, Escalante
This family-owned place is in a tiny town, but the food is worthy of a special trip. 40 East Main, Escalante.
10. Pace's Dairy Ann, Woods Cross
The food here is served up fresh, so you'll likely wait a bit for your order. The burgers are tasty and the onion rings and fries are crispy. Make sure to leave room for a shake! 1180 S. 500 W., Woods Cross.
11. Ripples Drive In, Provo
This little gem has been serving up tasty burgers and fries since 1955. They still grill everything up fresh, so the food tastes amazing, but it does take a little longer than the local McDonald's (waaay worth the wait). This place doesn't take debit/credit cards, so make sure to bring cash. 3225 N. Canyon Road, Provo.
12. Uinta Drive In, Kamas
This little drive in is the last stop on your way up the Mirror Lake Scenic Byway. It's always hopping during the summer - especially on weekends. The shakes are so popular here that they have one employee dedicated just to shake production in the summer! 235 E. Center Street, Kamas.
What’s your favorite drive-in restaurant in Utah? Do you have memories of these places?
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