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Places in Mesa, AZ

I am new to Chow and new to this board! I am so excited, I love phoenix and I love to eat! This is perfect. I live in Mesa, but I am only there to sleep. I work in Tempe and do most of my recreation in Phoenix. I often criticize Mesa for their lack of creativity and local restaurants. I was surprised to read in the thread “Summer Dining Deals” that “lovepinot” recommend a tasting menu at S Bistro in Mesa. I thought to myself, have I been to hard on Mesa is there local independent restaurants that are good. So I thought I would ask the experts……you! Was I wrong are there good places to dine in Mesa or was my original hypothesis correct. (Forgive me if this topic has already been discussed… I’m new)

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  1. One of our favorite dinner spots is Tutti Santi on the corner of Dobson and Guadalupe.

    You'll find mixed reviews of Dooby's on the board but we love it. It's on the same corner.

    Search on Mesa and you'll find lots of threads.

    1. At the west end of Mesa, at the SE corner of Dobson and Main, I've recently discovered Asian Cafe Express and Grill El Quetzal. The former serves Chinese food; the latter serves the cuisine of Guatemala. Both are modest strip mall restaurants without liquor licenses, but they serve authentic and tasty food. Also, there's recently been some discussion of a good Peruvian restaurant a mile away at Alma School and Main.

      See this discussion for more detail:

      http://www.chowhound.com/topics/39586...

      1 Reply
      1. I, too, would love to find some nice places in Mesa because I work there. So far, I generally just stick to the chain places for lunch.

        One place I'm wanting to try (sorry if this is slightly off-topic, but it IS in Mesa) is a new hole-in-the-strip-mall Mexican place called "La merced mexican kitchen" on Extension and University. I've been searching for a good little cheap Mexican place in Mesa and I think (though I could have been wrong) the windows looked like they were advertising "huitlicoche" which I've had before and loved. This could be a nice authentic place! Then again, it might not be. But I thought I would throw it out there for ya.

        1. I'm not sure what you're looking for exactly, but I have found several good mom-and-pop ethnic places in Mesa. Benjarong for Thai, Mango's for Mexican, RigaTony's for Italian, Aloha Kitchen for Hawaiian, sN Pacific Rim Asian Kitchen for noodles, Crackers and Co. for soups/salads/sandwiches, etc. Nothing I would call fine dining, but decent meals nonetheless.

          1 Reply
          1. re: 1wino

            I've tried Chandler's Rigatony's... antipasto salad and table bread, tiramisu and apple bread pudding (EXCELLENT with Frangelico sauce!), chicken piccata and stuffed shells, and their baked rigatoni are very good!

            sN Pacific's key lime cheesecake (yes, key lime cheesecake) is awesome!

            If you love cinnamon rolls and French toast, you must try the cinnamon French toast at Crackers and Co.! The blackberry bread pudding is to-die-for!

          2. Mesa is lucky enough to have both Cafe Roma and Brunello, so it's really not lacking for terrific Italian food. My advice with either place is to not go in thinking you want a particular dish, but to just ask your server to bring you what's good. I've had divine meals at both places that way.