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Feb 26, 2012 05:49 AM

Pls review my Scottsdale rest choices-what am I missing?

Hi there! I'll be in scottsdale with 4 girlfriends at end of March (fri-sun). For fri we have dinner reservations at citizen public house, sat dinner at FnB, and Sunday brunch at Zuzu. I'm looking for lunch options on fri and Saturday, preferably not fine dining and at least one option that features southwest cuisine. I would love to try fry bread but we don't want to leave Scottsdale... Also, what are your thoughts on kazimierz wine bar for drinks? Thank you so much!!

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  1. Sounds like a good plan. Although others disagree, I am not a big fan of Cafe Zuzu, unless you are staying at the Valley Ho. For that brunch, you might want to consider the Herb Box at Southbridge. They have a great patio and the food, IMO, is very good. If you want to stay in the Old Scottsdale area, for Mexican Street food (not Southwest), try Barrio Queen (from the owner of the Barrio Cafe).

    Other lunch options, Distrito (new Jose Garces restaurant) or AZ88 (both in the same area).

    7353 E Scottsdale Mall, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

    The Herb Box Southbridge
    7134 E Stetson Dr, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

    4000 N Drinkwater Blvd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

    1. I would add Lon's at the Hermosa for brunch/lunch...wonderful place.
      We'll be in Scottsdale end of March and friends rave about the Kaz bar..can't wait to go!

      3 Replies
      1. re: Beach Chick

        I second what Random987 said. Also, Kaz bar is great. Largest wine "book" I've ever seen and cool atmosphere.

        1. re: hungryinaz

          these are AWESOME suggestions! thank you. any suggestions for great coffee in scottsdale? will take a break for our activities for coffee, and one of the ladies in our group is obsessed good coffee...

          1. re: Lotus7

            In Old Town, my favorite coffee spot is Cartel Coffee Lab (which also has locations in Tempe and Downtown Phoenix). In north Scottsdale, Press Coffee is a decent choice. One can also find decent coffee in southwestern Scottsdale at Echo Coffee. All of these shops also roast their own beans, but in my opinion, Cartel is head and shoulders above the others and probably the most likely to impress a hardcore coffee nerd.

            I've heard good things about Village Coffee Roastery (a few miles north and east of Old Town Scottsdale), but I've not had any of their coffees.

            Note: Apparently, these places have all opened since the Chowhound mapping database was last updated. Given the imminent demise of the database, I'm reluctant to create new entries for these establishments. So, instead, I'm just including links to their websites below.

            Cartel (Old Town Scottsdale)

            Press (Scottsdale Quarter/north Scottsdale)

            Echo (southwest Scottsdale)

            Village Coffee Roastery ("east-central" Scottsdale)

      2. A great lunch spot would be Grazie for killer pizzas or great paninis. Their salads are excellent and you can either sit inside or outside this time of year. Great wine list and good hard to get italian beers. For Brunch, I like Zuzu, but I also really like The Mission.

        3 Replies
        1. re: danieli10

          Also Cafe Monarch in that area does good brunch/lunch

          Cafe Monarch
          6934 E 1st Ave Ste 102, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

          1. re: kmarg


            Is there a posted Cafe Monarch brunch/lunch menu?

            Open hours?

          2. re: danieli10

            Also, if you do the Old Town Scottsdale Thursday Night Art Walk Grazie is right there, on Main Street.
            No driving necessary.
            One of the better wine by the glass lists, good pizza, good crowd and a nice patio.
            Although, on this site, I am in the minority I am not an FnB fan. The concept is much better than the food.

          3. Kaz Bar is ok for drinks but your best bets in that area IMO are Casablanca, CPH, and Rancho Pinot (which is also highly recommended for dinner).

            Rancho Pinot Grill
            6208 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, AZ

            Citizen Public House
            7111 E. 5th Avenue, Suite E, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

            The Casablanca Lounge
            7134 E Stetson Dr, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

            2 Replies
            1. re: BillB656

              Just went to Casablanca for the first time a few weekends ago. It was the end of a long night, but from what I remember, it was excellent :-) Great patio, and I believe one of the bartenders there just won some mixology contest

              1. re: cactuschowdah

                That was Shel Bourdon that won the AZ Cocktail Week Last Bartender Standing competition. Glad you liked it!

            2. You are dead on with your Old Town dinner choices. CPH is awesome and FnB is my favorite spot not only in Scottsdale but the Phoenix metro area, it is our favorite place to take out of town visitors. Between the local wine list and local ingredients you will get a great taste of what our state has to offer. I recommend that when you are at FnB you at least have a glass of our AZ wine. Callaghan Vineyards is my favorite winery out here, Dos Cabezas is another one that we frequently will pull out to convince doubters that AZ produces some really good wine.

              I am not sure if you know about CPH's R+D cocktail bar. If you and your girlfriends are at all into cocktails it's a must. Basically CPH has a semi secret cocktail bar upstairs. To get up there, you walk around the side of the building to find a staircase with a gate at the top. Call the number on the bottom of the stairs and they will come down get you and bring you up there. 90% of the cocktails have some sort of molecular component that they make in front of you (it's a really fun vibe), the 3 bartenders and one doorman that man the bar are incredibly friendly and passionate about what they do and the drinks are not all show they taste fantastic. My wife ordered the Gin and Tonic, they actually distilled the gin via bunson burner right in front of us. The drink was outstanding. Our favorite night in old is FnB followed by drinks at R+D. Kaz is great for wine, love the atmosphere and the list is quite impressive and a great choice if you want to go the wine route.

              I couldn't agree more with Random about Herb Box and Barrio Queen. I definitely liked Herb Box over Zuzu for brunch and Barrio Queen is awesome, you are getting a Beard nominee doing street food and Silvana (the chef) can flat out cook, the food is inventive, yet comforting, definitely not your traditional Americanized Mexican food you get most places. All of these places are within a two block radius of each other.

              For your other lunch you might want to take a look at Baratin. The owners at FnB launched a super casual spin off of FnB also in the same the area as the rest of your choices. Mission is great too, but if I am going to do one Mexican meal in old town particularly with more than a couple people I would do Barrio Queen. Cowboy Ciao is another one to throw in the mix. It is somewhat of an institution in old town. The CPH chef build his name as the head chef there and Pavle Milic the owner of FnB and Baratin made his name running front of house. We have always enjoyed our meals there but haven't been back since FnB opened (they are next door to each other, same price range, and my wife and I love FnB). Monarch is another one to consider for that last spot as well. It is a one man show. The place is very small one man cooks, waits tables, busses tables, runs front of house does it all and he does it really well. We have loved our meals there, great atmosphere and could be a killer place for a lazy lunch/brunch. If you go with Monarch I would be trying to make a reservation ASAP.

              The weather is awesome that type of year and you are staying in the right part of town. You and your girlfriends are going to love it.

              Have a great time.