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Christmas Eve dinner in Phoenix?

jkgourmet Dec 11, 2007 04:56 PM

Our visitors are taking the red eye at about 10PM, so we were looking for something for dinner on Christmas Eve, not too far off track from Phoenix Sky Harbor and casual. I had wanted to go to Tradiciones, but not surprisingly, they are closed. Bario Cafe or Richardson's are good thoughts - but I'm concerned about getting a table and I don't think either take reservations for three people. (Los Sombreros I KNOW doesn't, and we've taken this out of town guest there before. He liked it a lot.)

We live in far East Mesa so anything that's not North Scottsdale is within reality. Said visitor is from Manhattan but not terrifically adventurous. (Read: He gets plenty of Italian and pizza and has better Chinese, Vietnamese and sushi than we ever will.)

Any ideas?

  1. c
    claree Dec 12, 2007 05:31 AM

    I don't know your budget, but consider El Chorro on LIncoln Blvd. and 56th Street. It's a short jaunt to SR 51 en route to the airport. It's on the expensive side, but has wonderful ambience and great food. Thier sticky buns are complimentary and addictive - your friends will want to take some to enjoy on the plane. It's the oldest(I think) restaurant in Phoenix at the base of Camelback Mountain and it is a great experience for locals and visitors. It's American/Continental. Elchorro.com

    4 Replies
    1. re: claree
      JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Dec 12, 2007 06:41 AM

      Now I'm wondering which restaurant *is* the oldest in town. I just looked at El Chorro's website and see that it became a restaurant in 1937. Monti's La Casa Vieja turned into a restaurant some time in the 1890s when the Hayden sisters owned the property, but alas the place went downhill when Leonard Monti Sr. died and his son Michael took the reins of the operation.

      1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
        hohokam Dec 12, 2007 07:49 AM

        That actually sounds like a fun game. Find the oldest continuously operating restaurant in each city. Monti's certainly would win in Tempe. I wonder if there is any way to verify El Chorro's claim?

        1. re: hohokam
          misohungrychewlow Dec 12, 2007 05:15 PM

          I think Sing High in downtown Phoenix takes the prize ...

          1. re: misohungrychewlow
            silverbear Dec 13, 2007 04:39 AM

            Perhaps true. Sing High doesn't get a lot of love on this board, but it's been around since the '20s:

            http://www.azcentral.com/home/food/ar...

    2. l
      Leanne Dec 12, 2007 09:04 AM

      Last year we had a lovely dinner and Phoenix City Grill on Christmas Eve. Call now for reservations.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Leanne
        jkgourmet Dec 12, 2007 04:20 PM

        Leanne, that was a brilliant suggestion! Sadly, they close at 8PM, which will not work for us. However, the nice folks at Phoenix City Grille suggested calling Richardson's and Rokerij. Happily, Richardsons is open and the DO take reservations !! Yeah !! But only for parties of four or more. Sadly, we only have three. Interestingly, the girl at Richardsons had no idea if Rokerij was open, but commented that they would take reservations for two. Surprisingly, Rokerij is open, available and willing the reservation. Having never been there, I don't know if I should be relieved or worried at this benevolence. If the food is 2/3's as good at Richardsons, I'm happy. Thoughts?

        1. re: jkgourmet
          mamamia Dec 12, 2007 11:53 PM

          Oooh...you will enjoy it.

          The dining room and the menu are more formal than Richardsons', and I can't help thinking that it will be a cool(hip, not temperature) and cozy spot to have a Christmas Eve dinner.

          1. re: jkgourmet
            epicurina Dec 10, 2008 02:36 PM

            Rokerij features quite a few of Richardson's menu superstars (bacon-wrapped shrimp, roasted garlic plate, Chimayo chicken), so you should be very happy if you are already a fan of Richardson's & Dick's Hideaway. Make time for a drink in Rokerij's underground bar; it's got a very cozy vibe. Here's a link where you can view the menu: http://www.burningembersphoenix.com. Just for fun: Rumor has it that The Rokerij is the name of Rich's favorite coffee shop in Amsterdam.

            1. re: jkgourmet
              f
              furrybluecyclops Dec 20, 2008 08:16 PM

              Just went to Rokerij tonight and went to Richardson's within the last two weeks. Neither was very good as far the food but the ambiance is excellent. The pizza and sea bass at Richardson's were both bland and not memorable at all. The NY steak at Rokerij was barely edible, I would say it was even a bad cut of meat that wasn't trimmed. But maybe they will do better on xmas eve. The veal meatball appetizer was good, but still not write-home-about good, esp for an east-coaster. I'd look elsewhere if you have a foodie on your hands. And BTW the $14 glass cabernet was served cold and tasted like it had been open for days on end. Seems like they need to step things up a bit.

          2. k
            knab Dec 22, 2008 01:36 PM

            Richardsons does take reservations and I bet there sister restaurant does as well the Rokerji. I think they would be impressed with the variety of choices. I love there carne ardavada (sp?) truly the best intown. The portions are large. A perfect meal to put them in a food coma for the flight!

            1. m
              mdepsmom Dec 23, 2008 01:31 PM

              I realize this thread is a year old but if anyone is still looking for a place open tomorrow night, Taste of India, a favorite of this board, on 16th St. & Bell, is open till 10 tomorrow night. That is likely where DH and I will be.

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