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Aug 16, 2010 12:26 PM

Tucson near Westin La Paloma

I'm looking for a Southwestern or Mexican restaurant within a 15 minute drive of the Westin La Paloma. I realize that many of you say the more authentic places are downtown, but we need somplace closer to our hotel. Kid friendly is a plus. A robust margarita wouldn't hurt. : >


Traveling from NYC

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  1. J Bar is in your hotel. My daughter likes Blanco, which is about 10 minutes west at 2905 E. Skyline (at La Encantada Mall).

    J BAR
    3770 East Sunrise Drive, Tucson, AZ 85718

    Tucson, Tucson, AZ

    1. J Bar is your best bet, of course. Past that, you have an el charro nearby at El Charro North (7725 n. oracle) , which I would call a step above Blanco's.

      1. Right- JBar is your place. It's not "authentic Sonoran", but you're not going to get that in your upscale area anyway. The prices are fairly high, for Sonoran food, but it's worth the money. It's Sonoran with a little twist by a fantastic chef and you don't even have to get into your car. Believe me, Janos and JB ar aren't your typical hotel restaurants.

        There is Rosa's, probably your other closest bet at Ft Lowell just west of Campbell on the south side of the street, I haven't been there in its current location but it does tend to get rave reviews (google it).

        Not to trash anybody's taste, but there is a Papagayo at Swan and Sunrise, I ate there once and never considered going back (when you walk into a Mexican restaurant and the first thing that hits you is the smell of Campbell's tomato soup, run away if you can), but to be fair it was probably over 15 years ago and it's still open.

        1 Reply
        1. re: EWSflash

          I used to live a couple of miles from Papagayo and eventually came to the realization that I was much happier driving a little further to an El Charro.

        2. J Bar is great, but not a traditional Mexican restaurant. More Southwestern, but really, really good. The menu is not super kid-friendly, although I suspect they'd make almost anything a kid might want, and their Happy Hour hot dog is great.

          Blanco is decent, but it's not great Mexican food. (And it's probably three minutes from the hotel, not 10.) Rosa's is good, but very heavy and very traditional Sonoran. (Lots of cheese, etc.) El Charro is also at Kolb and Sunrise--probably closer--and it's also OK. As for Papagayo, I think it's filthy and won't even go in their for a cocktail.

          Tucson, Tucson, AZ