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Portillo's coming to the Valley!

Portillo's Hot Dogs, a wonderful Illinois chain, purveying the best of Chicago, announced today that it is scouting locations in Phoenix, Tempe, and Chandler.

Jan 30, 2012
biga290 in Phoenix

Vincent on Camelback's

In fairness to Vincent the OP's bad experience occurred the day before the expiration of a Groupon. When reserving at Vincent's it is important to specify main dining area.

Jan 29, 2012
biga290 in Phoenix

Who's open for dinner in Scottsdale and Phoenix on Xmas EVE and Xmas DAY?

Havana Cafe on Camelback near 42nd or 43rd is doing a traditional Cuban roast pig thing on Christmas Day.

Dec 12, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Best steakhouse in Phoenix

Agreed. Don and Charlies is so Scottsdale. Great atmosphere with all the Chicago sports memorabilia. The steaks may not be prime but they are very good and they serve really outstanding baby back ribs. Love their take on baked potatoes as well -- HUGE spuds with lots of butter and sour cream. Go in March and the place is packed with ballplayers.

Jul 27, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Best chili dogs in Phx?

I second Ted's excellent chili dog especially with raw onions and cheese. Short Leash is also an excellent dog -- 1/4 lb natural casing Schreiners on choice of naan bread or conventional roll -- with some very interesting combinations and toppings. however i do not believe that chili is among those combinations and toppings. i like Chicago Hamburger Co. for lots of reasons (especially the char cheddar cheeseburger served medium rare) but I do not particularly like the skinless Vienna Beef dog that they offer.

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Chicago Hamburger Co
3749 E Indian School Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85018

Jul 06, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Soft shelled crabs in Chicago

soft shell not soft shelled. :)

Jun 21, 2011
biga290 in Chicago Area

BBQ in PHX? I'm from Texas

Check out the brisket at Bryan's Black Mountain Barbecue in Cave Creek. Its just like Kreutz's Market in Lockhart, TX.

Jun 17, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

good bbq (PHX)

My wife and I drove up to Cave Creek from Central Phoenix this afternoon to try Bryan's Black Mountain Barbecue for the first time. Bryan's is certainly the best barbecue in the Valley, if not the world. I had the brisket and chicken combo and my wife had the pulled pork sandwich. The brisket is like the brisket at Kreutz Market in Lockhart, TX, relatively lean, heavily smoked with those red smoke rings and incredibly tender. The chicken is served off the bone yet is firm and incredibly moist and flavorful. I tried my wife's pulled pork and it too was outstanding -- long strings, moist and flavorful and the sandwich was huge. On the side, the fries are hot and crispy on the outside and potatoy on the inside and dipping in the homemade "spicy" sauce makes them even better. The "baked" potato salad is OK but the 6 gun beans are a much better starch. As for the homemade sauces they are a mix of tomato and vinegar kind of a cross between eastern and western north carolina style and very good. the spicy sauce is not hot its just has a bit more vinegar than the regular sauce. This lunch was well worth the half hour drive. Bryan does a terrific barbecue with big portions and exceedingly reasonable prices. We are definitely going back very soon.

Jun 17, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Soft Shell Crab in Westchester

Moomiji on Halstead Ave in Harrison serves jumbo soft shells in tempura batter. they are out of this world!!!

Jun 13, 2011
biga290 in New York State (exc. NYC)

Live Maine Lobsters

I miss the steamers too and the full bellied fried clams and oysters.

Jun 12, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Gino's East

I enjoyed Gino's East for many years at the original location on Superior. I stopped eating there after they moved west. I tried it again after many years when they moved back to Superior and found that the pizza was nowhere near as good as I remember in particular the cornmeal crust, which had been crisp and tasty was soft and almost tasteless. Did I just get an "off" pie?

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Gino's East
8725 W Higgins Rd Ste 100, Chicago, IL 60631

Jun 12, 2011
biga290 in Chicago Area

clarion clipper

I remember it well. I always stopped there on my trips from ny to the midwest. food was decent -- best in the area -- with a real nice salad bar. sadly when I went back a few years ago and it was a medical building.

Jun 12, 2011
biga290 in Pennsylvania

Live Maine Lobsters

Any suggestions where to get live Maine (not Pacific) lobsters either (i) to bring home and steam or (ii) at restaurants serving?

Jun 11, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Bottled Tarter Sauce in Phoenix

I just saw Bob's Big Boy tartar sauce at the Sprouts in the same mall as In 'n Out Burger at Cactus and Tatum.

Jun 09, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Hayward Wisconsin

Thanks so much Rick. I love supper club relish trays!

May 25, 2011
biga290 in Great Lakes

Frank & Albert's at the Biltmore

Returned to Frank & Albert's last week because after so many good to great experiences there I did not want to cross it off my list without giving a second chance. This time I ordered the $16 Harris Ranch bacon cheeseburger "rare." It came out medium well. The waitress cheerfully took it back and returned a few minutes later with a tasty rare burger. However the kitchen neglected to put the bacon or the cheese on it. I did not send it back a second time as we were with guests and I did not want to draw attention. The consensus around the table was that the food and service was just OK -- a typical hotel dining experience. Its really a shame as Frank & Albert's really was special when it opened and for a year or so thereafter. Higher prices, smaller portions, and lower quality are a sure fire formula for failure. I will not be back except maybe for happy hour unless and until this place steps it up again to its former glory.

May 25, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Hayward Wisconsin

We rented a place on Round Lake for the first half of July. Other than Famous Dave's any suggestions would be appreciated. We are open to anything but are particularly interested in classic Wisconsin supper clubs.

May 25, 2011
biga290 in Great Lakes

Pizzeria Bianco‎ - wait?

Went today for lunch at 11:30. Seated immediately as 3 of the 10 tables were empty as was the bar. Hadn't been there in 15 years. Loved it had the Rosa. The parking guys though said that they had never seen it so slow ever so today may have been an aberation or just the start of summer.

May 24, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Where to go? Taking adventurous teenage grandson to BILTMORE in early March: 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners.

frank and alberts imho has really gone downhill. used to be my go to place as i live within walking distance. however my last 2 visits have been sooo disappointing, smaller portions, higher prices, and lower quality. it feels like management doesn't care about the very obvious decline. its a shame!

May 13, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Restaurant in central Phoenix w/ space for 50-100 & appetizers?

It is a beautiful location! Unfortunately the food quality has declined significantly over the past few months. I live within walking distance and it used to be my go to place but no longer. I think management may have changed -- very lackadaisical now. You can definitely do better.

May 09, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Cheap eats in the area?

Pho Van in Chandler has excellent Vietnamese. Lee's sandwiches across the street has good banh mi (vietnamese sandwiches on french baguettes) at really cheap prices ($3-4 each). also the chinese restaurant a couple of doors to the right of Pho Van does a nice dim sum. last i was there was a couple of months ago and the check for 2 was under $25 including tax.

May 04, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Grand Canyon, Phoenix, Sedona and Flagstaff

Phoenix: Barrio Cafe and Gallo Blanco for the kind of modern Mexican that is very hard to find elsewhere.

Sedona: Elote. Same as above.

Flagstaff: Brix for local well-sourced meats and produce, somehat upscale. Criollo is owned by the same folks as Brix and is also well-sourced meats and produce. However it has more of a latin twist and is less expensive and more casual.

Grand Canyon: Had lunch last month at El Tovar. Food was just OK but dining on the rim is an experience that you should not miss.

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Gallo Blanco Cafe
401 W Clarendon Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85013

Apr 29, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

What is the best Mexican food in Phoenix?

gallo blanco in the clarendon hotel.

Apr 17, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Craving New York Food

i moved out to the valley from new york about a year ago. imho nmiracle mile deli at 20th and camelback serves wonderful overstuffed pastrami and corned beef sandwiches that rival anything i've had in ny. and their prices are so reasonable about $8 or $9 per sandwich including choice of side.

Apr 17, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Best eats at Spring Training Venues

I think you are right that they routinely fry them to order. Besides the high quality pork the quick transfer from fryer to mouth is what makes this so good!

Mar 26, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Best eats at Spring Training Venues

Be sure to ask that they serve your pork tenderloin hot from the fryer. its awesome.

Mar 25, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Best eats at Spring Training Venues

In the farthest leftfield corner of Hohokam Stadium in Mesa there is a truck that sells Iowa style fried pork tenderloin sandwiches. It is the single best ballpark food that I have had anywhere.

Mar 24, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Frank & Albert's at the Biltmore

I have been dining a couple of times a month at Frank & Albert's since it opened about a year and a half ago and have thoroughly enjoyed it until going there for dinner two nights ago. Started with the roasted tomato soup that tasted and had the mouth feel of diluted tomato paste. The meatloaf that I have enjoyed many times was fine but the portion was much smaller than before. One of my companions stopped after two spoons of the soup and was also disappointed with the portion size of the meatloaf. Though uncrowded on a Saturday night the service was listless. And to boot when I got the check the server had added his gratuity without mentioning it to us. I am used to this latter practice for a party of 6 or more but we were only 4. I will go back because I have had so many terrific meals there and sincerely hope my last experience was an abberation. But if this represents the new Frank & Albert's its in serious trouble.

Mar 14, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Where to go? Taking adventurous teenage grandson to BILTMORE in early March: 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners.

i think its shorter to walk over the bridge across the canal in front of the biltmore and turn left on to biltmore estates drive then about 1/2 mile down turn left on colter and then right on 32nd Street to the strip mall at 32nd and camelback that houses Noca.

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Noca
3118 E. Camelback Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85016

Feb 28, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix

Where to go? Taking adventurous teenage grandson to BILTMORE in early March: 2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners.

donovan's steak house at 31st and camelback will pick you up and return you to the biltmore.

Feb 21, 2011
biga290 in Phoenix