HOME > Chowhound > Southwest >


No. Phoenix Mexican Called "Luna" Something or other???

I will be visiting friends in Peoria at the end of the month, and ate at a wonderful Mexican place years ago in North Phoenix. All I remember is Luna in the name of the restaurant. Does anyone know which one I am speaking of? Thanks in advance.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. You are probably thinking of Valle Luna- I am not sure if the place still holds up. I would recommend the following

    1. Los Sombreros- this is not a cheese crisp and chips and salsa type of place but trust me, go.

    2. Rosie's Place 23rd Street and Mcdowell. Wonderful, Clean and did I mentione Wonderful Mexican.

    4. Ranch Market- 16th Street and Roosevelt- Mexican style market but there food court is outstanding!!!!! Best Carne Asada taco's I have had outside of Mexico.

    3. Richardson's New Mexican Cuisine- 16th and Bethany Home

    4. A chain option that I do love from time to time if Arriba, many throughout the Valley

    If you need more suggestions for Mexican check out the southwestboard. Enjoy your stay and happy eating.

    1. Valle Luna is the only Mexican food place I know that has Luna in the name. Leanne is correct that there are better choices.

      I also recommend:

      Pepe's Taco Villa (21st Ave. & Camelback)
      El Bravo for Green Corn Tamales (7th Street & Hatcher)

      and the list that Leanne provided.

      Have a great time in Phoenix!

      1. Sounds like great fun! Living around Valle Luna and having been there many times over the years (not willingly), might I recommend kindly as others have that you *avoid* them and instead try any of the previously posted recommendations? If you love cigarette smoke then try Richardsons <no non-smoking area>, but the rest have non-smoking areas. Have been to the other spots listed previously and agree they're much better choices. We live in Arrowhead (Glendale/Peoria area) and any on this list would be happy to offer alternatives for the area. I bet you'd LOVE the Ranch Market!

        1. Thanks all. I knew I could count on you! I think it was La Valle Luna, someone I was with went there for years with her father, so probably the sentimental meaning was stronger than the food. I just remember it being good, not so much outstanding.

          I did previously see Richardson's and other recommendations on this board, and the list above certainly is more than I can do in a day or two. Of course, this isn't till the end of the month, but I will send these along to my hosts and see where they would like to go. I have a 10 year old with us as well, so that is a consideration, although he has a wide range of tastes. That programming was done intentionally!

          1. I frequent Richardson's regularly (once every 7 to 10 days) and can honestly say I can't remember the last time smoke was an issue. There may be one or two smoking at the bar...so don't sit there. Choose a booth in the corner. The best smoke is the pecan wood from the grills. Yum!

            1. I don't think the Valle Luna sucks, but, I've had some items on the menu that were flat out bad. If you stick to basic Sonoran choices, it isn't too bad. They really pack 'em in on Tuesdays for the Senior Citizen Special. http://www.valleluna.com

              I might prefer Arriba as something that has a location close to Peoria (Glendale) http://www.arribamexicangrill.com

              I've tried a bunch of smaller, independent joints in the area, and haven't found anything great. I didn't really care for Lily's 6706 N. 58th Drive, Glendale AZ, but, I guess it has a following.

              1. I really like the veggie fajitas at Valle Luna, lots of grilled summer squash and zuchini and no green bell peppers!

                1. Valle Luna would be last on my list of mexican (so-called) places to eat. Almost any other place, including the many "bertos", has flavor. Luna has none.

                  1. I just talked to my friend up there, and some of these places are an hour or so from where he lives. I don't doubt that they're excellent eating, but wanted to stick close to Peoria, which is where they live.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: personalcheffie

                      Yes, almost all of the suggestions are Central Phoenix or further East. The exceptions are Arriba and Ranch Market. Both have locations in Glendale.

                      Mi Cocina Mi Pais is a nice Ecuadorian Mom and Pop place. It's small and the service is slow, but, the food is good. The tamale sampler is a must. 4221 W Bell Rd, Phoenix AZ

                      Another place that interests me, is the Arizona Kitchen at the Wigwam resort. It's upscale, not Mexican, either. http://www.wigwamresort.com

                      You could get the Horchata gelato at Lombardo's (kiosk in Arrowhead Towne Center, 2nd level, west of the food court).

                    2. Actually, it doesn't have to be Mexican and it doesn't have to be upscale. It just has to be good. It looks as if we will be in the Peoria area for two full days, leaving on the third morning to head to Chase Field where we will probably have brunch in that area. I am looking for something that two couples and a 10 year old with broad tastes can enjoy, defintely no chains for us. There are many places that I would love to go to, but they are not in the Peoria area as I don't know that section of 'Phoenix'. I think the most north I've been is the Roy's at the Marriot off 101 Loop years ago. I am looking for something a little less formal this time, and also a little less expensive. If the market is close by in Glendale, it's a definite for me.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: personalcheffie

                        Wohoo, you're in luck! There is indeed a Ranch Market in Glendale! It's at 59th Ave & Thomas (N.E. Corner) so you can either swing out loop 101 to the I-10 to 59th and swing North to Thomas, or: chug-a-lug via the surface streets due East.

                        As for Richardsons, you'll likely love them if you're a smoker or tolerate smoke well. I'm in a group parents who take their kids weekly to rehearsal in Richardson's neighborhood for the past several years (and more to come) - and we choose to spend the hour waiting to pick up our kids by doing dinner weekly. It has to be close by as we've only the hour, but invariably a new addition to the group will pick Richardsons - and we'll all dutifully tramp down (good sports that we are) to see if anyone can take them yet, but invariably the majority of the group end up gagging/wincing and leave about halfway through drinks. Durants this place is not, so until they bring back organic Absinthe to the bars, we bypass Richardsons only for the toxic atmosphere they force on their patrons. At least in the Absinthe bars they didn't force you to drink it!

                        Nothing like the old college try - and here's hoping Richardsons gets with the 20th century :-)

                        1. re: dean

                          I have had great meals at Richardson's, but as you, do not tolerate smoke well (even though I do some cigars on the patio after dinner at home). I've had good luck in the "annex," around the corner, and contiguous to Richardson's, Dick's (?). Same kitchen, bar/bistro setting and to the immediate east, then north, about four doors total from Richardson's. Surley, someone will give you the official name for that restaurant.


                          1. re: Bill Hunt

                            Dick's Hideaway is around the corner from Richardson's.

                      2. If you want authentic Mexican on the west side, you must go to La Perla's Restaurant at 51st Avenue on Glendale. This is right down the block from downtown Glendale which is actually a cool little old fashioned downtown with many funky shops and antique stores and very pedestrian friendly.

                        La Perla's has real mariachis at times (probably weekends) and I think they have an attached club with live Tejano music as well. There is no real atmoshere - old booths, paneling, very old building, cheap prices. But the food is incredible and it's still owned by the descendents of the couple who started it 50 years ago.

                        If you go to Glendale early enough in the day, there is also a very good long established chocolate factory - Cerreta's Fine Chocolates - about 1/2 mile east that does tours and hands out samples.

                        Best to check both for events and times by phone as I'm not sure they have websites.

                        There is also an excellent genuine Italian Pizza & Spaghetti place on 59th Ave and Greenway called Ralph's La Hacienda. For 30 some years I think and still run by Ralph. Awesome pizza, unusual HERB Italian house dressing (tons of herbs in their original vinagrette), and most typical spaghetti house dishes on the menu. Again no real atmosphere but prices are low. This is across from the Thunderbird International Graduate School of Management but also in strip mall region so not sure what attractions might be nearby.

                        1. The best parts about La Perla aren't even the food...
                          1. The crazy large fish in the crazy small tank. PETA people should not go.
                          2. Ruth, the old time waitress. I won't divulge my age(a lady never does..har), but Ruth has been there since I was five years old. And even at that point she had been around a long time! I remember her serving us and I had lost my two front teeth. She was known as "Roof".
                          3. Cheap bottled beer.

                          It's homestyle Sonoran food, which isn't my favorite, but we go so far back that I can't help but love it there. It's part of the fabric of old Glendale.