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Bistro 258 is now an elegant, relaxed restaurant, but the building has a past.

A one-stop shop for sex, alcohol, soda and opium existed in downtown Ogden around 100 years ago. Before Bistro 258 was a quiet, eloquent restaurant, women would hang out the windows and yell down to men passing by, inviting them in to visit.

Most people who have been to Bistro 258 in the past several years know the place as a quiet, relaxed atmosphere–a great setting for a night out with your significant other, perfect for a place to eat before a school dance or maybe a great start to a night out on the town with friends.

People may not know some of the history or that people claim it is haunted. I was told about a big guy who wasn’t afraid of much but would claim there were ghosts in the basement and didn’t like going down.

“I don’t personally think so. I never thought it or felt it was haunted or spooky,” said Cecily Kiss, manager of Bistro 258 and student as Weber State University.

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While the prostitute cribs upstairs are gone, there are still remnants in Bistro 258’s basement of the opium dens that used to exist there. (Tyler Hoffman | The Signpost)

Below Bistro 258 are remnants of what used to be an opium den. There is also access to the underground tunnels of Ogden. However, since that time of debauchery and endless parties, the tunnels have been sealed up.

In the past, the top floor was where women “entertained” their customers. Nowadays, it is just office space available for lease. There’s a walkway on the side of the building many people use to go to and from the Marriott parking lot area to Historic 25th Street. Women would either invite men up the stairs located near there, or usher them around back through the walkway to huts.

“I was told the place was a brothel, and there is an opium den downstairs,” said Nicole Brooks, a waitress at Bistro 258

Today, people can enjoy a great meal and wonderful service, with options to sit in the front room, the back glass-covered room, or out back with the night sky and the ambient sound of everyone enjoying themselves around Historic 25th street.

“You can sit down and visit with your sweetheart for an hour,” said Nick Cash, owner of Bistro 258.

Bistro 258 prides themselves on several dishes, including their steak and their pork chop dinner. All meals are made with fresh ingredients. The establishment offers creative desert dishes and signature martinis. Two entrées and a martini comes out to $49.51 with tax.

“I’ve worked at corporate restaurants, and it is all out of a can,” Brooks said. “Here it is fresh, and that is the predominant reason I love this place.”

Kiss recommends stopping at Bistro 258 to try their signature items, visiting City Club for a beer and heading over to Alleged.

Her favorites on the Bistro 258 menu: “Mango Martini; made with Haagen-Dazs sorbet, with vodka, triple sec, lemon lime, and a cherry and The Fuzzy Peaches; two half peaches flash fried in batter, served with a scoop of Haagen-Dazs vanilla ice cream and sorbet, drizzled with a cinnamon caramel and raspberry Melba sauce.”

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