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phx - what place are you glad you gave a 2nd chance

hi,

i know everyone has bad experiences, they happen :( what place did you give a second chance after a bad initial visit, and now, you're so glad you did?

here's mine :

padre's, on camelback near 10th-ish street

my first visit was awful - the wine was stale, the chips were ancient, the steak was like a tire, the waiter surly, and every single person there was loud, rude, and obnoxious. UGH

but - recently went, and - the clams app was fantastic. the shrimp entree was divine, the margarita was excellent, chips/salsa great, wait staff friendly and efficient - it was a really good meal, quality ingredients ably prepared, in a nice friendly place with good staff. i've been back for drinks since, even!!

anyone else have a place you're glad you tried again?

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  1. yippeee! you know, I'm their biggest fan 'cause i live around the corner and hang out there. i think its totally underrated, and I honestly think part of that is how young the owner and staff are.. they're really turned that place into a wonderful spot. i was at their new years brunch and loved it.

    so happy to hear things turned around.

    1. China King at Ray and Alma School. We tried it for dim sum a while back and it was horrible. No selection, carts didn't move, and the what we tried we weren't keen on. We went back this past weekend and loved it. We stuffed ourselves on shumai, pork buns, pot stickers, and more. Best dim sum we've had in ages.

      1. Sabuddy -- First time I went to the original location in Tempe I thought the hummus was salty and the service weird. Now, I'm a huge fan.

        Fate -- I'm still irked by the sometimes microscopic portions, but I found the service and food much better when I visited on an off night midweek rather than on a crazy First Friday.

        Portland's -- First visit was a disaster because a friend thought it would be a good choice for a pre-theater dinner. Friend didn't realize that Portland Street is more than half a mile north of the Herberger, so we had to try to eat at a fast pace that the kitchen was not prepared for. Subsequent visits purely for a meal at Portland's, without a rush to get to an event further to the south, have been much better.

        Pane Bianco -- Went on a Saturday after if first opened when the lines were long. Didn't seem worth the wait. Felt much better when visiting again on a typical weekday.

        3 Replies
        1. re: silverbear

          Texaz Grill - First time I went I ordered one of the specials which wasn't that good. Every time since I have ordered the Chicken Fried Steak. By far the best CFS in the west.

          1. re: ValleyFever

            I visited Texaz Grill a couple months ago and the CFS wasn't very good at all - the meat was quite tough. Perhaps it deserves a second chance...OTOH, Ranch House Grill's CFS is awesome! Also looking forward to trying Overeasy's version.

            1. re: azhotdish

              See, and I don't care for RHG's CFS (it's the batter). Now their Spicy Tortilla is another story. I'll eat that till i can't walk.

              Do try Texaz's again if you get the chance. I've never had a tough steak there, and I go every couple months.

        2. Believe it or not, my first visit to Rancho Pinot left a lot to be desired - the ribeye was overcooked to my specs and quite fatty; service was also intrusive. On subsequent visits though, my experiences were nearly flawless in terms of food and service and definitely one of my favs in town.

          1. Add to my list above Copper Star Coffee. I wasn't thrilled with my first visit, but since then I've become a fan. I've heard complaints that the cofffee is weak. That may be true, but I don't really notice since I'm not a big coffee fan anyway. I like Copper Star for the Harney tea sachets and the iced cappuccinos in the summer.

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            Copper Star Coffee
            4220 N 7th Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85013

            1 Reply
            1. re: silverbear

              The coffee was terribly weak on my first and only visit to Copper Star--I took the fact that the person behind the counter acknowledged as much as a bad sign. But given that they are more local to me than Lux and my visit was right after they had first opened, they are still on my "give them another chance" list.