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Sep 12, 2009 06:22 PM

Interested in Restaurants & Other Activities in Mesa, AZ and Surrounding Area

This may be a little early but I will be visiting my daughter in Mesa for the Thanksgiving holidays for a week and am looking for some great restaurants to try. I'm a foodie & I absolutely love authentic cuisine (Mexican, Italian, Asian, etc.)..lived in New Mexico for six years so I know how Mexican food is supposed to taste. Not really interested in chain places unless there is something that I shouldn't pass up and not looking to go broke in some over rated place either.
Anyone have suggestions? Because Mesa is close to Gilbert, Tempe, & Scottsdale, I'm not opposed to taking a drive.

Also would love some suggestions about things to do; don't want my daughter to have to keep me company the entire time I'm there. I'm into the arts, jazz, comedy, etc. Not too much of a clubber but love live music and a drink now & again. Was in Mesa last July & wanted to go horseback riding but way too hot...hopefully, will get the chance in November.

Any and all suggestions will be most welcome! Thanks in advance

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  1. Well, there's always the Ranch Market for cheap, but very tasty, Mexican food. There's a new one that just opened in Mesa on the Northwest corner of Stapley/Southern. I loved what I had when I went there (3 taco combo plate with rice & beans - the Al Pastor meat was fantastic).

    There's a local "chain" (started out in 1994 by ASU students as a hole-in-the-wall and now has about 6 or 8 locations around town) called Pita Jungle that has tasty, inexpensive Mediterranean-ish food. Their Chandler location has a great patio on a "lake." I believe they have live music on the weekends sometimes.

    If you like Vietnamese, my favorite place for Pho is Pho 68 on the Northeast corner of Dobson/Warner next door to Lee Lee's Asian Market. I love their soup. Lee's Vietnamese sandwich Shop is across the street, too. Gelato 64 in the same shopping center has interesting flavors. And Chino Bandido, which is a cross between Mexican and Chinese, is around the same part of town (Dobson/Chandler I think).

    There's the Improv in Tempe on the Northeast corner of University/Rural if you like comedy. There's always museums...ASU has a great art museum, and there's the Phoenix Art Museum downtown. You could go to the downtown Phoenix farmer's market on a Saturday morning, have breakfast at Matt's Big Breakfast, and then head over to the Art Museum.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Jen76

      A few place links.

      Matt's Big Breakfast
      801 N 1st Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85004

      Chino Bandido
      1825 W Chandler Blvd Ste 2, Chandler, AZ 85224

      Pita Jungle
      1949 W Ray Rd Ste 28, Chandler, AZ 85224

      Lee Sandwiches
      1901 W Warner Rd Ste 1, Chandler, AZ 85224

    2. Los Dos Molinos & Blue Adobe are both New Mexico style Mexican places in Mesa.

      1 Reply
      1. re: razordogg

        Thanks for the previous suggestions, Jen 76 and razordogg...everyone else, keep them coming please and thank you!

      2. I really like Pancho's Mexican Buffet for lunch. Other than Carolina's (a dive in a bad neighborhood), Pancho's is one of the few Mexican restaurants where I go back often. Pancho's is located on the north side of Southern Avenue just west of Alma School. (it is next to the GoodWill with the Blue Awning. And it is inexpensive.

        Before you leave ask the waiter for sopapios and coffee for dessert. They are piping hot and fresh.

        Joan in Mesa, AZ

        1. If you visit the Heard Museum (which I really like) or the Phoenix Art Museum, you'll be a very short drive from Matt's Big Breakfast, the downtown Ranch Market, Carolina's, El Nopalito, and the Fry Bread House, all of which are both good and inexpensive.

          The Arizona State University art museum has changing exhibits; if something's on that interests you, a search for downtown Tempe restaurants will bring up lots of good, inexpensive choices in the University and Mill Ave area that are within walking distance.

          Carolina's Mexican Food Restaurant
          1202 E Mohave St, Phoenix, AZ 85034

          El Nopalito
          2831 N 24th St, Phoenix, AZ 85008

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

          Phoenix Ranch Market
          5833 S Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ