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Apr 27, 2007 03:26 PM

PHX - Tell Me About Your Hidden Restaurant Gems

One of the great aspects for me in being a Chowhound is discovering some hidden gem that never gets much talk on these boards or even coverage in the local press. But these places get hidden behind the classics (Durant's) or the latest find (Twisted) or the perennial favorite (Phoenix Ranch Market, LGO, Delux).

So, help me out here, Phoenix hounds!!! What are your "hidden gems," the places that you love but rarely get more than a passing mention?

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  1. I really like the Bodega Bistro for Tapas. They are way out in the Cavecreek/Carefree area but I think they're worth the drive. Headed there tonight. :-)

    1 Reply
    1. re: arizonagirl

      I love Bodega. The empanadillas with chorizo and manchego are awesome. Killer churro too. :)

    2. Can only think of one not mentioned very often...Elie's Deli (44th St/Thomas).

      2 Replies
      1. re: azhotdish

        I love Elie's - the proprietress feels makes you feel like her long lost niece, and the lentil soup, hummus, gyros, dolmades, tzatiki, are excellent!

        1. re: yamalam

          I had Elie's lentil soup for the first time today - you're right, delicious.

      2. crazy jims...its on 15th ave, south of indian school..not a darn thing fancy or upscale about it...not so much a dive as just a neighborhood the bleu cheese dressing and the gyros.......mmmmmmmmmmmm

        1 Reply
        1. re: winedubar

          mmmmmmm i second crazy jims and I think they have another location downtown, but their feta cheese (which comes on many items!) is AMAZING. And the pita that comes along...delish!

        2. Shish Kabob House. 51st Ave and Olive. Judging from the lack of diners, no one knows about it but as I've droned on about on here, the food is outstanding.

          6 Replies
          1. re: Firenza00

            I'll second SKH, although I'll echo my recommendation from another thread to order anything but the falafel. By the way, to find SKH via Google Maps, you've got to spell "kabob" as "kebab."

            Another candidate: Grill El Quetzal, the Guatemalan restaurant in Mesa. As noted in my post earlier this week, it's really good, but it's gotten no press and always seems empty.

            1. re: silverbear

              We're freakily in sync. The falafel is the only thing we dislike there. :) Sorry about the spellling. :)

              1. re: Firenza00

                Your spelling is fine. I think it's the restaurant's spelling that is a bit unusual, but when translating from languages that don't use the Roman alphabet, spelling is always up for grabs.

                1. re: silverbear

                  A Scottish friend maintains that a "kebab" is very different from a "kabob". The distinction is mostly lost on me but it involves late night drinking, dodgy food stands, and fiery hot sauce. As best I understood a kebab was rather like a gyro here but given his described condition at the time of eating, I'm not sure how much I can trust his description.

            2. re: Firenza00

              gd, i haven't been there in 15 years, since we lived on the west side. it WAS a great place though, bet it still is. and quite the deal!

              1. re: Firenza00

                Shish Kebab House has been one of my staple dinner spots for a while now. It's not the best Persian food in town (I prefer Persian Room) but it's fairly economical and the food is pretty good. I go there about 3-4 times a month (probably because it's in my part of town).

              2. Osha Thai in Scottsdale. It never gets any love, but its my favorite place in town. Admittedly, I haven't had any Thai in Mesa yet.