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Breakfast/lunch/dinner suggestions for Scottsdale/Phoenix., please! [Moved from Elsewhere in America]

Dear Hounds,
We're vacationing at Firesky in Scottsdale. Know not to dine there. Breakfast no doubt way overpriced. Suggestions, please!
We will be dining at Avanti in Phoenix w. friends one night--second visit--loved it the first time!
We love Mexican, particularly if they have a full bar for Margaritas. We love French, Italian, "Continental" (remember that, fellow East Coasters?), BUT not vegetarian/vegan, not Thai.
No entrees over $20, please, unless spectacular food + generous portion. No "nouvelle cuisine."
We live in the Lower Haight in San Francisco (lots of great little places in walking distance) and I work in fine dining at a Michelin-starred restaurant here. I have top-shelf tastes on a well budget.
We will be most grateful for your advice! Thanks, hounds!

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  1. I can highly suggest Tarbell's in Phoenix.

    However, you might want to move this or it will be moved for you to the SW board.
    Good luck!

    1. Los Sombreros, Ranch House Grill.

      Updated: RHG has a website, but, I can't figure out how to edit the place.

      Los Sombreros Cafe & Cantina
      2534 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85257

      Ranch House Grille
      5618 E Thomas Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85018

      1. Over Easy for breakfast is a no brainer. It's on 40th Street south of Indian School so that's maybe a 10-15 minute drive. Matt's Big Breakfast in downtown Phoenix is great. Expect to wait at both tiny places if you arrive on a weekend after 8am or so. Before that there is no/minimal wait. There are closer breakfast places in Scottsdale but they are not in the same league as these two places.

        1. I was thinking that meeting your price requirements will be hard, in Scottsdale. You might try looking at recent threads on Happy Hour deals. The Roaring Fork comes to mind, but, in my experience, you need to get there early to get a seat in the bar.

          Roaring Fork
          4800 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

          1. I second Los Sombreros and also the $20 limitation but here goes:
            America's Taco Shop for the best Carne Asada in Phoenix
            Breadfruit (Jamaican)
            Lo Lo's Chicken and Waffles (there is one on Scottsdale Road but the original in the 'hood is a better "experience."
            Pizzeria Bianco (be prepared to wait but look elsewhere on this site for tips)
            Rito's for the Green Chili Pork Chimichanga

            Only Pizzeria Bianco on this list has a bar but you'll be way under $20 and will eat well. Search this site for more details.

            As for the more conventional places such as Tarbells, $20 will be tough. You might want to consider the happy hours as suggested. J&G Steakhouse in the Phoenician has a great beer and burger special in the lounge. You'll get $100 ambiance, views and service and a darn good burger tor under $20.

            1. A lot of "no this / no that" in this inquiry. A little flexibility might go a long way, especially since with the exception of Mexican, the cuisines chosen don't often align with entree prices below $20.

              Nevertheless, some ideas:

              -- Chelsea's Kitchen -- A few miles west of your hotel in the Arcadia neighborhood of Phoenix. Slightly southwestern, a little European, all good and no entrees over $20. Great patio along the canal.

              -- Radio Milano -- Near Chelsea's Kitchen and under the same ownership. Italian with most, but not all, entrees under $20.

              Incidentally, San Franciscans seem to love both restaurants named above. I haven't visited your city enough to really understand why, but I like them both from a Phoenician point of view.

              Back in Scottsdale:

              Petite Maison, a well-regarded and recently opened French restaurant, might be an option. Some entrees are over $20, some are under $20, but the "staff meal" offered after 10 PM Thursday - Saturday is a great bargain.

              Metro Brasserie -- also a well-regarded French place in Old Town Scottsdale. Entrees top out at $20.

              As for Mexican, I can't recommend all that much within Scottsdale itself. There are many more options in Central Phoenix, South Phoenix, etc. It all depends on how far you are willing to travel.

              Chelsea's Kitchen
              5040 N 40th St, Phoenix, AZ 85018

              Milano Radio
              3950 E Campbell Ave, Phoenix, AZ

              Metro Brasserie
              7114 E Stetson Dr, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

              Petite Maison
              7216 E Shoeman Ln, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

              1. I used to live for years at Turk and Masonic. You may also want to try The Mission. Carlsbad Tavern is a great New Mexican (as in the state) with excellent food at good prices with great drinks and a unique atmosphere.

                1. Petite Maison for breakfast or lunch may be a good option. I suspect their price point for b-fast is better than dinner. Generally speaking, stay away from the restaurants in Scotts. Fashion Square, but there are some places you would probably enjoy just south of SFS on the south side of Stetson. Also check out Razz, north on Scotts. Rd by Shea Blvd. Can use Restaurant.com coupons, or Razz also has specials from time to time.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: AllPhoenix

                    It should be noted that Petite Maison is open for brunch (10a) on the weekends only, and open for lunch at 11a during the week. They are not open for breakfast.

                  2. A couple of lunch bargains:

                    Sakana Sushi - a very filling lunch for about $10. They are heavy handed with the "krab", but, most cuts of fish are pretty good for the price.

                    Tandoori Times - the lunch specials come with rice, naan, and dal, all of which must be ordered ala carte at dinner, and really drives up the check. This is pretty good Indian, by Phoenix standards.

                    Sakana Restaurant
                    6989 N Hayden Rd Ste A12, Scottsdale, AZ 85250

                    Tandoori Times Indian Bistro
                    8140 N Hayden Rd Ste H115, Scottsdale, AZ 85258

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: johnseberg

                      I would not send anyone to Sakana. Any SF person can get way better sushi in SF. I'd send them just about anywhere else for sushi.

                      1. re: danieli10

                        Actually, I've never been impressed with sushi (childhood disgust at seaweed, no doubt) but I do like sashimi. HOWEVER, I'd like to thank all you Phoenicians & Scottsdalians for your suggestions. Now I think I can avoid buying a Zagat and just use my list & my instincts. Thank you so much for your help--and Happy Holidays!

                        1. re: plainfood

                          About a mile from Firesky is Humble Pie, which is pretty decent wood-fired pizza, plus a few other things, appetizers, and salads. They have an express lunch, and happy hour specials.

                          The Good Egg is also in that strip mall, and is pretty typical of Scottsdale breakfast offerings. I prefer US Egg, just because the service is better.

                          The *cheapest* breakfast might be a drive-thru burrito from Fiesta Burrito.


                          Fiesta Burrito Mexican Food
                          7402 E McDowell Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85257

                          Good Egg
                          6149 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85250

                          1. re: johnseberg

                            Humble Pie is an excellent choice but The Good Egg and US Egg are institutional breakfast places that will fill you up but that's about it. Invest in a few more minutes of travel time and hit Over Easy and Matt's Big Breakfast.