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Tucson Suggestions? Looking Specifically For...

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1HotTomato Mar 24, 2014 08:52 PM

I went to U if A some 20 (gulp!) years ago and am returning with my 9 year old son to do a little sightseeing over his spring break.

Looking specifically for recommendations for places like El Arte De Rosita, Cafe Terra Cotta, Lucky Wishbone, Janos and Daniel's in the early 90s. (Any of those places still around?) I know that's all over the place, so allow me..

I'd like to visit an authentic Mexican joint. I live in San Diego, so we get great Mexican food, but Sonoran style is a different kind of good. I used to love El Arte De Rosita…and the place (I forget the name) with the big sizzling trays of chicken with bacon and great charro beans…looking for authentic versus fancy.

Cafe Terra Cotta was cutting edge back in the day. Great food. Janos, too, but fancier. I'd love to hear about something inventive going on that's uniquely Tucson. What's new on your food scene? (Foodie shop suggestions welcomed, too.)

Daniels was just…good. Upscale, but not overly. I love foie gras and can't get it in CA, so bonus points for helping me find a good goose fix.

Lucky Wishbone was a great local chain of fast food dives. Their fried shrimp were my college favorite. I'd love a "quick bite"/guilty pleasure option. We're on vacation. "Healthy" is not the most important criteria. In general, I don't do vegetarian/vegan restaurants.

So…yeah, looking for suggestions in any of the above categories. And also maybe a good outdoorsy place to eat. I think the Tohono Chul Park had a tea room back in the day, but would love to find something yummy with a walking area nearby. Anything near Desert Museum or Sabino Canyon?

Price - anything from "Rachel Ray cheap" to $35 per person without drinks. Will have a 9 year old with me. He's a pretty open-minded eater and well-mannered diner, but having something interesting like art or good people-watching would certainly be a plus.

Thanks in advance for suggestions…and feel free to mention any non-foodcentric "don't miss" things to do! :)

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  1. m
    marelyisdead RE: 1HotTomato Mar 25, 2014 10:03 AM

    On our February trip to Tuscon we really enjoyed the pizza at Time Market near the UA campus. El Charro is always fun and authentic.

    1. s
      Saguaro RE: 1HotTomato Mar 27, 2014 03:22 PM

      Terra Cotta has been gone for I would guess 7-8 years. Janos has a place on 6th beneath the Etherton Gallery. The food scene is not worth writing about other than El Nene which has Sonoran Dogs that are in a class by themselves. Enjoy the desert, but the food is better in San Diego.

      1. DriverPhil RE: 1HotTomato Mar 28, 2014 10:42 AM

        this topic seems relevant - http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/969519

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