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Located at CityScape, downtown Phoenix's entertainment hub, The Arrogant Butcher boasts an ultra-hip vibe and a contemporary American kitchen led by Chef Andrew Ashmore. A popular spot on the social scene, this restaurant is best if looking to catch the day's game, host a private party, celebrate with happy-hour specials, indulge in romantic conversations or rub shoulders with state politicos. There's never a dull moment even when it comes to the menu which covers appetizers of zucchini fritters, mains of jambalaya and sweet potato tortellini and dessert that includes salted caramel pudding and warm peanut butter cup. The minimalistic interiors with plush sofas, portraits on the wall and mood-enhancing lighting adds to the upscale, 1960s feel of the place.
Don't expect to be handed a check after your meal; you won't get one. That's where the name comes from. You're on your honor to tell the cashier what you've eaten and to pay your fair share. It is downtown Phoenix's premier place for down-home cooking, with a few booths and walls covered in praises from local fans and famous visitors alike. The menu features fried chicken, pork chops, red beans and rice, cornbread and cobblers. The delightful, simple food is prepared from the heart.
Matt's Big Breakfast has been covered time and time again by local publications and foodies, elevating this downtown Phoenix diner to legendary status. The uncompromising quality of the ingredients is just the start with spot-on technique and an unchanging menu only adding to what makes this place one of the best for breakfast. The cooks at Matt's whip up perfect eggs, griddlecakes and more hearty mains through the day. A lunch menu is available during the second half of service, although the focus is always placed on the morning fare. Complementary coffee refills top off the appeal of Matt's, a Phoenix highlight that can't be missed.
When in the city, visit Lo-Lo's Chicken & Waffles run by the grandson of the Phoenix soul food legend Mrs. Elizabeth White. This place is always packed with hungry locals craving some old-fashioned soul food, complete with all the trimmings of collard greens to mashed potatoes. It has even been visited by celebrities like Shaquille O'Neal, Amare Stoudemire and many more. The boisterous and unpretentious setting is made up of several small rooms still laid out as part of the original house, all packed with tables full of diners. The waffles are light and fluffy, and the chicken is fried to perfection! After your main plate is cleared away and if you still have room, be sure to try the red velvet cake along with some sweet tea.
Windsor is one of the culinary achievements of Craig Demarco; a local restauranteur celebrated throughout the Valley for his popular Postino Winecafe and Churn. The menu features all the goodness of home with favorites like short-ribs and mac-and-cheese. In addition, the restaurant also serves healthier options such as the Fattoush salad and the grease-free Banh-Mi fish sandwich. The spot is open for lunch, dinner and weekend brunches. During the summer months, don't forget to cool off with a creamy, homemade ice cream at Churn, right next door.
One of many restaurants at Biltmore Fashion Park, Seasons 52 is an eatery that, true to its name, presents mains made from the freshest produce the season has to offer. The menu is never repetitive and you will always savor something new; be it Copper River salmon, oak-grilled filet mignon or spicy chicken chile relleno. These wonderful offerings are followed by bite-sized indulgences like key lime pie and raspberry chocolate chip cannoli. The best part is that nothing on the menu is over 500 calories, so you can indulge on anything guilt-free. Make your dining experience even more enjoyable by pairing your meal with a label from their wine list.
Serving seasonal American fare, Beckett's Table is the perfect place in the Arcadia district for a wonderful meal. A large restaurant that has many spaces to accommodate diners, this eatery is suited for friends and family. Fork-tender short ribs, steamed white bass, house-made sausage pasta and seasonal organic vegetables are a few of the delicious items on the menu. Vegetarian and gluten-free preparations are also available and the menu also changes according to the season. On Sundays, local wines are available at half price.
Chelsea's Kitchen offers a break from the many burger, Tex-Mex and typical American food places that sometimes describe Phoenix's dining culture. Innovations using new ingredients and flavors create specials such as the Honey Curry Chicken Salad or the Grilled Swordfish Tacos. The wine list here complements the food as well as the seasons with the selection focusing on wineries around the state. Enhancing the petite diner's beauty is the cool and charming patio with palo-verde trees where, on weekends, one can enjoy drinking bottomless mimosas during brunch hours.
Chicago-bred Frank and Ron Dazzo hit gold by selecting the perennially weather-friendly city of Phoenix to open their dream hot dog place. Dazzo's Dog House opened its doors in 1979 and has since established itself as an institution for hotdogs in Phoenix. From the classic hot dog and chili dog to the more inventive beer sausage, Bratwurst and Polish, the fare has been a favorite among generations of patrons. Also on the menu are Italian Beef Sandwiches, burgers, burritos and sides of onion rings.
Bootleggers in North Phoenix provides a cozy, comfortable and casual environment to enjoy upscale barbecue. Classic BBQ staples like St. Louis ribs and smoked brisket share the bill of fare with more contemporary items like Moroccan spiced smoked tofu and PBLT sliders with 10-hour smoked pork belly instead of bacon. You won't want to skimp on sides like grilled cauliflower steak with whiskey onions, jalapeno and raisin cornbread and braised red cabbage. With craft beer flights available from the bar alongside specialty cocktails and a good wine selection, Bootleggers is the perfect place for a decadent, flavorful meal.
If fresh, seasonal food is what you're searching for, head straight for Rusconi's American Kitchen. Classic and New American dishes get a bit of a twist from seasonal, local ingredients to make a tasty menu of hearty dishes. Many dishes are made using the wood-fired oven, giving a rustic heartiness to the already stellar selections. The restaurant serves up brunch and lunch in addition to dinner, and even offers a kids menu, so the whole family can enjoy these bold flavors.