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Tucson Eats

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There's way more than just chimichangas and cowboy steaks in this desert city. The University of AZ and the local Air Force Base have always been agents of widening tastes at the foot of the Santa Catalina Mountains. The outdoors fuels appetites here, and you can taste your way through town: Sonoran hot dogs, French bakeries, kimchi quesadillas, ceviche and sushi, gelato...By all means savor the excellent Mexican restaurants, but know you have other choices as well...
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50 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
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Chile en nogada is a poblano chile pepper, stuffed with peccadillo (shredded meat, aromatic diced dried fruit and spices), topped with a walnut-cream sauce and pomegranate seeds. This dish from Puebla is not often found on menus of Mexican...
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110 E Pennington St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
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No, you don't have the wrong address—this is indeed a downtown office building and parking garage. But don't be alarmed. Walk through the door, and Café Poca Cosa's stylish interior tells you immediately that this is no boring strip mall Tex-Mex...
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300 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
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While "eating local" has established itself as a trend across the U.S., many are surprised to find farm-to-table restaurants in Arizona—it's a desert, after all! Well, even in the desert southwest, there are ranches, orchards, farms, and even...
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1060 S Kolb Rd, Tucson, AZ 85710, USA
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Breakfast at a mom-and-pop-restaurant. There's just no better way to get a local-flavor start-of-the-day when you're from out of town. In Tucson, you can't go wrong if you get a hearty plate at "Poco & Mom's." Yes, "New Mexico food" may not be...
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311 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA
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El Charro sits in a converted set of historic houses & buildings a block off Tucson's old town district—the same location where it began serving food in 1922. We had lunch here, at a big old wooden table in a warmly decorated dining room. Ask to...
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A, 2221 I-19 Frontage Rd B102, Tubac, AZ 85646, USA
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Tucson is predictably well-endowed with Mexican restaurants...But it's still worth driving about an hour south to the little town of Tubac for a meal at Elvira's. Upon entering the cool space, you won't be surprised to learn that the chef/owner...
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119 E Toole Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
Mexican-Korean fusion has arrived in the desert! Every few weeks, all the food trucks in Tucson converge in different neighborhoods for a 'food truck roundup' fiesta, and now, Mafooco (the Mexican Asian Food Company) is among them. Folks in ...
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446 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
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In Tucson, gelato is, understandably, becoming part of the cityscape. A handful of Italian gelato-masters have settled here, educating desert palates with tempting desserts. Here, just a few blocks from the University of Arizona, Allegro rotates...
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15000 North Secret Springs Drive, Marana, AZ 85658, USA
No matter how posh, there's always a place for something deep-fried to go with drinks, eh? Tucked into its own private canyon on the far northwestern edge of Tucson, the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain resort is the epitome of understated desert...
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375 S Stone Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
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Casa Vicente is an institution in this desert city—Tucson's outpost for tapas a la española. Just south of the downtown core, a couple of blocks from the neo-Baroque façade of the Cathedral of San Agustín, this restaurant also features live music...
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5039 East 5th Street, Tucson, AZ 85711, USA
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In mid-town Tucson, along with the best Tom Kha Gai soup in town, this mural awaits you in Char's Thai Restaurant. The juxtaposition of mythical Southeast Asian creatures and Monument Valley desert scenery makes for some very unlikely, but...
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5201 S 12th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85706, USA
Come to "El Güero Canelo" if you're in southern Arizona. It's a Tucson institution where you can get the best "Sonoran/Mexican hot dogs" north of the border... But what's a Sonoran hot dog? It's a wiener wrapped in bacon(!), served atop beans in a...
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Popsicles that are prickly? Well, prickly as in 'prickly pear' juice from the cactus fruit that ripens into a sweet, amethyst treat in midsummer in the deserts of the Southwest. They're called tuna in Spanish. Stop by the Farmers' Market on a...
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311 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
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A destination since 1919, Tucson's Hotel Congress is home to the Cup Café—one of the best places in town from breakfast to happy hour and on into late night. Look up when in the restaurant. A couple of 'dead soldier chandeliers' will light your...
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5425 N Kolb Rd #115, Tucson, AZ 85750, USA
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A little over a mile from where the deer roam in the saguaro-studded foothills of the Santa Catalina Mountains, sit down for some izakaya-style dining. Japanese "tapas" might not be a completely accurate description for this genre of shareable...
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5501 N Hacienda Del Sol Rd, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA
The Grill is the only restaurant in Arizona to receive the “Award of Ultimate Distinction” from Wine Enthusiast. History, quiet service, and the most romantic dining in Tucson are all here. For the best dinner-with-a-view, ask for a table in the...
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7301 E Tanque Verde Rd # 191, Tucson, AZ 85715, USA
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Far from his native Bologna, gelato master Nazario Melchiondo crafts tastes that have found a ready home in the desert city of Tucson, Arizona. Always fresh, it's made on site, and the flavors change seasonally. One decadent way to enjoy the...
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1859 W Grant Rd #103, Tucson, AZ 85745, USA
A husband-and-wife team have brought Canada's national junk-food, born in Québec in the 1950s, to Tucson—finally, you can eat "poutine" in southern Arizona! And it's even "local"...the "Zany Beaver" food-truck gets its cheese curds from local...
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9121 E Tanque Verde Rd, Tucson, AZ 85749, USA
Le Buzz is the place to hang out and caffeinate on Tucson's northeast edge. They roast their own coffee, bake their own pastries, and they're on the way if you want to pick up something for a picnic on your drive up to Mount Lemmon above the...
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2081 Hardy Rd, Willcox, AZ 85643, USA
"Orchards" is not the word that comes to mind when most think of southern Arizona...but less than 2 hours east of Tucson, up in the high desert, Apple Annie's is a family farm destination for fresh summer fruit. At an elevation of 4400 ft (1300m),...
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6260 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712, USA
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For a decade and a half now, Tucsonans have been coming here for fresh-baked bread...and much much more. Get some challah French toast in the morning...or a chicken-green-chile omelette...and no shortage of croissants and scones... Mid-day, if you...
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3061 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
Cholla (pronounced "choyah") cactus are common in the American Southwest, but not many outside of the region know that you can eat the flower buds. They're high in calcium, and even help balance blood sugar. Many Tucson residents have never tried...
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5532 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712, USA
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If you've been to Jalisco in central Mexico, you've probably heard of "birria," the spicy stew made with roasted peppers and goat. Well, this is Arizona, and Takamatsu is a Japanese/Korean restaurant...so what's "birria coreana?" Its real name is...
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312 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
The "db"-branded English muffin buns of Diablo Burger are a recognizable trademark of delicious local quality. The ingredients are mostly sourced from within a 250-mile radius of Tucson, including grass-fed, free-range beef from the Diablo Trust...
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621 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA
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Just north of downtown Tucson off the Fourth Avenue streetcar line, the B Line is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But more importantly, it's one of the city's favorite dessert spots. When you enter the converted bungalow, check out the...
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4699 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712, USA
Puns don't get much better than "Sir Veza." Around since the 1920s, this beer-loving, car-themed Tucson restaurant is run by the same people behind the venerable El Charro, the country's oldest family-owned Mexican restaurant and birthplace of the...
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3073 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
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So it turns out that "cronut" is trademarked by a certain New York restaurant...so in Tucson's "Prep and Pastry," you can have "dossants"--the same DOughnut-croiSSANT hybrid with just a different name. But there's more, so much more. Some might...