Walking distance from Chandler & Arizona ave?
I'll be at the crown plaza san Marcos in Chandler march 7-9, and I'm wondering if there's anyplace worth eating at that I can walk to. Or in a pinch, take a short cab ride (or bus?) to.
I like authentic food. Don't give a rip about atmosphere. Anything cooked with heart or technique. Bonus if it's something I've never eaten before, but that's tough to find.
Thanks for all suggestions!
Just wanted to update a couple things here. We were downtown tonight to pick up some vegetables at the small farmers market and decided to grab something to eat. We walked over to look at the menu at Sriracha....they're not open right now. A sign on the door indicates closed due to "unfortunate circumstances" and that they will open with renovated interior in May(kitchen fire perhaps?).
We also walked by Fat Cat. It was dead tonight with teh wait staff standing watching int eh windows. . We looked at the menu which is very similar ot the last version of 98 South. We were never enamored by the food there so chose to keep walking.
The Brew Pup and Murphy's Law were both crowded however as was Sushi Eye.
Ended up at a busy La Stalla to split a pizza and salad. Pizza is a solid choice here time after time.
The closure of Sriracha is due to an issue with the liquor license. They hope to reopen soon.
Also, I should mention that Jess Harter, the author of the post linked to above and the journalist who coverage I endorsed above, was unfortunately among those included in layoffs the East Valley Tribune announced earlier this week.
Yep, I'll add my recommendation for La Stalla. If you're looking for food cooked with heart, as the OP originally said, I'd certainly say it's here.
Agree about the pizza, except that I'd leave off the proscuitto. As much as I love the stuff, it's just too salty on this pizza (I can't say if it's the brand of meat they use, the amount of salt in their sauce or a combination of both). they also make the best carbonara that I've had since Italy, 1992.
I'd personally take a pass on El Zocalo except maybe for a margarita out in the back patio. I've found the food to be pedestrian at best, and the place really is noisy. As much as it's a traditional favorite, I can't endorse Guedo's. When three tacos, one burrito, one can of coke and one beer come with a tab of over $20 for self - serve, I'm done. Elmer's is a good alternative.
I agree about El Zocalo. THe patio is great, the food not so much an dgiven it's mediocrity expensive. We prefer to head to Si Senor on Alma School....but ask them to go light on the cheese there or your food will be drowned in a rubbery mess! Can't beat the Hatch chile sauce.
Nearly ten years now and we still have yet to go to Guedo's. We've had three exchange students live with us who all LOVED Elmers. I have to admit we've never tried it ourselves....I guess we wrote it off because it has so much love from the high school kids. Will have to try it out given the positive comments here. It's been a long time since we were last at El Sol but we have liked the tacos and burritos when we have stopped in.
Not a fan of the Urban Tea Loft either. Like the concept but the food has been fair at best when we've been in. The last time we stopped in for dessert and the desserts appeared to be several days past their prime. That was the last visit. I"m actually surprised they are still there...it's often empty when we're down there but maybe they do a good lunch business to keep them going.
Ziggy, I'm not a huge fan of Elmer's - it's just better and cheaper than Guedo's. It's been awhile, but the taco's at the place just down Chandler Blvd on the south side, before you get to McQueen, used to have very good and cheap tacos. But probably not within easy walking distance from downtown as the OP wanted.
But truthfully, I'm spoiled from authentic street cooked taco's in the interior of Mexico. Can't beat 'em.
Two of my favorites in downtown Chandler are El Zocalo and Urban Tea Loft. El Zocalo is family-owned and has wonderful shredded beef dishes and, I think, the best salsa in town. It also has great ambience as a bonus, including a gorgeous back patio with lots of greenery and a fountain. Urban Tea Loft has a small but diverse list of entrees made with tea-infused sauces and such; the owner is now in the kitchen and definitely cooks with heart. I especially love it on weekend nights for jazz and tea-tinis. Yes, tea-tinis: martinis made with freshly brewed teas.
Downtown Chandler has emerged in the last decade or so as a nice walkable cluster of restaurants and shops. I wish I could give you a detailed run-down of the options there, but it's 30 miles from my house and 20 miles from my office, so I don't get down there too often. Neverthless, circumstances took me there for lunch today and I had a nice meal at Latitude 8, a stylish Thai restaurant. I'd suggest giving it a try. I've also had good meals at Guedo's in the past, but it's been a long time since my last trip there.
Also, I should mention that Jess Harter, who makes a cameo appearance in this thread, is the dining critic for the East Valley Tribune, a suburban newspaper that covers Chandler. He's one of the best sources of information on Chandler restaurants. This link will take you to all of his blog posts tagged "Chandler":
You may also wish to follow him on Twitter:
De Beebz has given you a good rundown of what's there in the plaza. I live in Chandler and out of the list I"d recommend Latitude 8 as being the "best" option(best being so subjective of course). We stop by La Stella occasionally. They make a decent wood fired pizza and thier pastas aren't bad. While we've been to Murphy's Law and Santan I wouldn't send a visitor there unless they were looking for a burger and a beer, in which case they'd fit the bill. Sushi Eye has good sushi. Not our first choice in the area but given the proximity to where you are if you're craving sushi it will serve you well.
As of last weekend, Fat Cat hadn't opened yet. NOt sure what the opening date is. Avoid the pizza place located in hte plaza(Piza Pizza I think is the name) at all costs.
You can also jump on the #56 bus headed west down CHandler Blvd two miles to Dobson Road and hit Cyclo(maybe your hotel would offer you shuttle service since it's so close). I guess you'd describe it as modern vietnamese. In any case, good stuff and I would go out of my way to eat there just for the green beans(Fortunately I live up the street and don't have to go out of my way!) Located in the plaza across the street is good gelato at Angel Sweet. Bus runs infrequently but if you plan around the schedule shouldn't be too much of an issue.
Within steps from your hotel is an eclectic mix of restaurants. There is La Stella (great happy hour for pizza), Sushi Eye (sushi served on a conveyor belt), San Tan Brewery (great bar food), Murphy's Law (irish bar food), Fat Cat (new american/wine bar), Siracha Lounge (pan asian) and Latitude 8 (thai) are all within 100 yards. Johnseberg mentioned Guedo which I like for their tacos but unfortunately Tortas El Guero is no longer open. Another option is Chodang Tofu and BBQ (Korean) located about a mile down the road on Arizona Ave.
That's quite far from me, but, I am considering making the drive to Latitude 8 Thai Grill, based on the reviews I've seen. I tried to visit Guedo’s Taco Shop once, but, it was closed that day. Tortas Ahogadas Guadalajara and Tortas El Guero look interesting. Hopefully, somebody from the neighborhood will chime in.
Guedo's Taco Shop
71 E Chandler Blvd, Chandler, AZ 85225
Latitude 8 Thai Grill
11 W Boston St, Chandler, AZ 85225
Tortas El Guero
611 N Arizona Ave, Chandler, AZ 85225
Tortas Ahogadas Guadalajara
518 N Arizona Ave, Chandler, AZ 85225