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Mar 2, 2008 12:40 PM

LA Chowhounder Visiting PHX for Long Weekend

Hi all --

We are heading out to PHX in a couple of weeks to hit up Cactus League Spring Training and we will be looking for some good eats for in between games. Since this a baseball trip, we are not looking for anything fancy or too expensive - just good food, and maybe good atmosphere (not required however), for good prices. The only place we clearly must hit is Sonic Drive In because they advertise this here in LA, despite the fact that the closest one is hours away in the desert.

Since we are from LA, we are more than familiar with fantastic Mexican, Japanese/sushi, and Chinese food, although if there are standouts in this area, please list them anyway. As a note, great BBQ is hard to find out in LA, so any suggestions for that would be greatly appreciated.

So the deets: we are staying closer to the airport, but will have a car for transportation. We need places for both lunch and dinner (please, no breakfast, as we won't be awake for it :P). For lunch, we are looking at $5-12 pp, per entree. For dinner, about $8-15 pp, per entree, not inclu. alcohol. Also, any suggestions for fun bars would be great - we like bars with plenty of beer on tap, pref. European imports.

Thanks so much AZ Chowhounders!

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  1. A must-hit for lunch is the Fry Bread House - great food. This is about 20-25 minutes northwest of the airport.

    A bar I think you guys might really enjoy is the independent brewery Four Peaks - good food makes it a viable dinner option, great beer both brewed on site and a good selection, college-centric atmosphere but still a lot of fun. This is in Tempe, about 20 mins east of the airport. Avoid on Thursday and Friday nights - the college crowd really loves this place.

    Four Peaks Brewing Co
    1340 E 8th St, Tempe, AZ 85281

    Fry Bread House
    4140 N 7th Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85013

    1. I second the Four Peaks recommendation. The atmosphere is great (really nice patio) and it's housed in a turn-of-the-century brick building that was once a Borden creamery. Good beer, and surprisingly good food. Another place you may want to check out is Papago Brewing, which is actually only about 15 minutes from your hotel. They have about 30 beers on tap (some of their own, usually several Belgian/German beers, and American micros) and a huge bottle selection. The food isn't fancy, but the pizza and sandwiches are tasty enough, and it's a very casual friendly atmostphere.

      Also, you're quite close to downtown Tempe which at least offers a few options (including a Gordon Biersch location). Sounds like your best bet there may be Rula Bula, a great Irish bar with decent food.

      Papago Brewing Co
      7107 E McDowell Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85257

      9 Replies
      1. re: boingo2000

        Link for Rula Bula:

        Rula Bula
        401 S Mill Ave Ste 101, Tempe, AZ 85281

        1. re: boingo2000

          For pub-grub and a good imported brew, I second Rula Bula. Not the best fish n' chips in AZ, but good. Plus, they offer some really good regular pub-fare.

          While I do collect brews, along with my wines and frequent pubs from London to DC, I do not know what is on tap. Back in Colorado, I could give you a dozen micro-brew-pubs, but not in Phoenix. Sorry.


        2. re: boingo2000

          Four Peaks is a great choice - their brews are awesome, and the food is all you can ask for in bar food IMO.

          Also in the vicinity besides Rula Bula is Casey Moore's Oyster House. In Scottsdale, Papago Brewing would be a good choice for a large selection of beers (I'd skip the food).

          If you skip the hot dogs at the stadium, give Ted's Hot Dog's a shot in Tempe - the hot dogs are shipped in from Buffalo NY and they were on Gourmet's list of top 10 dogs in the country some years back. Bring cash, they don't take cards. Also in Tempe, some cheaps eats and good BBQ can be found at Urban Campfire.

          If you're not burnt out on trendy burger joints in LA, you might enjoy Delux Burger, not too far from the airport. They also have some good brews on tap which is a big plus.

          Ted's Charcoal Broiled Hot Dogs
          1755 E Broadway Rd, Tempe, AZ 85282

          Urban Campfire
          921 E University Dr, Tempe, AZ 85281

          Casey Moore's Oyster House
          850 S Ash Ave, Tempe, AZ 85281

          1. re: azhotdish

            The Delux link...

            3146 E Camelback Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85016

            1. re: azhotdish

              If the OP is familiar with Father's Office, Delux serves a similar burger and sweet potato fries without nearly the hassle. I like Delux better, truthfully.

              It's worth your while to go to Four Peaks - nothing like it in L.A. that I've found.

              Have fun!

              1. re: dustchick

                While both Father's Office and Delux have great burgers, I think Delux wins in my book simply because of their awesome root beer float.

                Still, I think Father's Office does a better burger ... but only slightly.

                1. re: ipsedixit

                  Love the Father's Office burger, but not so in love with the $14 price tag [and that DOESN'T include fries!], so we will definitely consider Delux for a Burger Fix.

                  1. re: umeakai


                    I can live the $$$ of the Father's Office burger ... it's the long wait and hassle to get a table that turns me off from that place.

                    1. re: ipsedixit

                      I can't remember the last time that someone at Delux hovered over my shoulder while I ate, like at FO. Now that I'm back in Southern CA (San Diego), I miss Delux.

        3. For bars in downtown Phoenix, I would check out The Lost Leaf.

          It's a art gallery-cum-bar with a wide selection of microbrews, a nice wine list and to top it off a few sake selections to keep things interesting.

          The Lost Leaf
          914 N 5th St, Phoenix, AZ

          1. For a Sonic, you need to make it the one in Tempe. I say "the one," because I do not know how many there might be in Tempe, but A Tempe Sonic has been used to film most of the commercials. There is even a current one, that makes reference to Phoenix. As you can probably tell, I do not know my Sonics well. Have not dined at one since about 1968.

            You might want to check out the great article on "Superbowl" dining, that was posted, just prior to that event. There is a wide range of dining options, and it is laid out geographically, so you can pick an choose, by where you will be. It goes from the upper-end "usual suspects," down to family-style spots.


            1. The Yardhouse (2 locations) is a chain that claims they have the largest beer selection on tap...anywhere, along with decent food. It's on the higher end of your budget as far as food goes, but if you want to have the variety of beer, it's generally the place to go. The closest one to your hotel is at Fashion Square, just minutes away from all of the bars at Old Town Scottsdale.

              Otherwise, Four Peaks is a great choice, not as many beers on tap, but there's generally something for everyone. Get the fries. They also have fantastic happy hour deals on the beers if that's something that appeals to you.