Croque Famous Sandwiches

A designer I work with suggested we go to lunch and so we met up at a local sandwich shop called Croque Famous Sandwiches.

Croque is conveniently located at the south west corner of Thunderbird Rd. and Scottsdale Rd. in Scottsdale, AZ. It’s super close to my home as well!

I’ve actually reviewed Croque before. About 15 years ago I used to frequent this sandwich shop with my grandfather. We would visit and over time tried all of the sandwiches.

croque-sandwiches-menu

Click here to view my review from 2001.

Today, Croque is still located in the same strip mall location, and they have expanded their food options to include breakfast options, as well as rice bowls and soups. The Asian rice bowls are apparently really popular, but I have not tried them yet.

Back to the sandwich: I ordered my old favorite, the Croque Madame sandwich, pictured in this post. This is by far my favorite sandwich at Croque, because of the great flavors. I only wish they would put more of the garlic sauce on it. I even paid for extra sauce, but it sure didn’t go far.

Also, the bread is a bit on the dry side. I’d much prefer if the bread was fresher and not as dry.

Despite these criticisms, I’ll be back at Croque for a sandwich very soon!

Croque Famous Sandwiches
13610 N. Scottsdale Rd.
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
Phone: (480) 607-1285

Yogurt flavors at Zoyo Frozen Yogurt shop

I’ve just returned from a visit to our favorite local frozen-yogurt shop, Zoyo Frozen Yogurt.

I thought it would be fun to just list of the variety of flavors they have for sale right now:

  • Nutella
  • Mint
  • Strawberry Banana
  • Cake Batter
  • Vanilla
  • Chocolate
  • Oatmeal
  • Chocolate Sorbet
  • Orange Cream
  • Raspberry Sorbet

I think they may have had a couple of extra sorbet options, but my mind isn’t remembering. I’ll check back in a few weeks! We tend to visit at least once a month.

The toppings are always the impressive part. Today, they had a few new options. It seems to me they’ve added to the candy options, because they now have more options like Snickers, Kit Kat, Crunch, Butterfingers, and mini peanut butter cups. Delicious!

Don’t fret, if you want fruit they have options! Today, I saw strawberries, kiwi, blackberries, and pineapple.

So, if you are looking for a new frozen-yogurt shop, do yourself a flavor… er, favor, and check out Zoyo Frozen Yogurt.

Getting there

Zoyo Frozen Yogurt has several locations around the valley. We usually visit the locaton at Tatum Blvd. and Shea Blvd. For a list of locations check out their web site.

Sauce Pizza Review

There’s a Sauce Pizza location about 5 minutes from my house in Scottsdale, but I had never been there until recently. Here’s my take on this extremely popular pizza restaurant.

pizza-from-sauce-pizza

When you enter Sauce for the first time you’ll be amazed at how large the interior is… it looks small from the outside. Sauce is a pizza restaurant where you place your order at the counter, and then find an available table. This certainly reduces the cost as tipping is not expected. This is similar to restaurants like Pei Wei and Five Guys.

Our pizza arrived a few minutes later: We ordered the combination style pizza, which had sausage and pepperoni.

We also ordered a salad, which was also very good. One other thing they sell are meatballs, and we ordered a few of them to try. They were very good.

meatballs

The food compares favorably to other pizza nearby, but we still like the pizza over at Fired Pie the best. Simply for it’s customizable nature.

Sauce is a fast-casual pizza restaurant founded by Fox Restaurant Concepts, and recently sold to the owner of Ra Sushi. That means that it’s a local company running the operation and that it will likely have strong standards and consistency.

There are nine locations of Sauce Pizza around the valley and in Tucson. You can get a full list of locations on their web site at saucepizzaandwine.com.

The Sugar Bowl in Scottsdale

logoThe Sugar Bowl in Scottsdale is one of my all time favorite places to take friends and family. For over half a century The Sugar Bowl has been serving delicious ice cream in Old Town Scottsdale.

Now that I think about it, I’ve been a customer for at least half of that time. My parents introduced me to the Sugar Bowl back in the 1980s, and we’ve been introducing friends ever since.

menu

The last time I wrote about this classy dessert place was in 2005!

So, what can you order? Much more than just ice cream, you can enjoy malts, shakes, cones, sorbet, and cookies and cakes.

They also serve a wide selection of food entrees, like tuna fish sandwiches, cheese sandwiches, and other tea-related items. They really have an extensive menu. During the spring and fall they will typically serve a fresh orange shorbet or ice cream that they make. It’s quite a treat.

ice cream from sugar bowl

malt

The interior of The Sugar Bowl is painted pink, with white accent. It’s like stepping into an old fashioned soda bar from the 1950s.

The Sugar Bowl
4005 N Scottsdale Rd
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
Phone: (480) 946-0051

Pita Jungle

I go to Pita Jungle for the delicious beef gyro, and for the superb turkey wraps. By far, Pita Jungle wins the award for one of the best gyro’s in the valley. I’ve tried gyro’s from at least a dozen other Mediterranean restaurants in Phoenix and nothing ever compares with the one at Pita Jungle.

pita jungle chicken dish

One of my other favorite dishes is the Wood Fired Chicken entree. Served over a bed of mashed potatoes, spinach, and diced tomatoes, this is one of my comfort foods.

The Chicken del Sol is another favorite: They serve chicken diced over tomatoes, beans, and veggies. Then, they circle the plate with a “sun shaped” set of pita bread.

There are so many amazing dishes at Pita Jungle. You could definitely call this a Mediterranean restaurant, but it also has so many vegetarian options, too.

Pita Jungle usually has beautiful patios, and they sell wine and beer as well as smoothies.

Pita Jungle also has a fairly extensive kids’ menu which we’ve ordered from quite a bit for our daughter.

Pita Jungle most assuredly qualifies as a local-chain at this point, but I would be remiss if I didn’t share this local favorite with my readers.

Pita Jungle is a Phoenix-based restaurant chain with locations all across the valley. I’ve personally been to most of the locations, including those in Scottsdale, Mesa, Phoenix, and Desert Ridge.

What makes Pita Jungle magical is their consistently good food, absolutely fresh ingredients, and relaxed familiar staff. Their wait-staff and cooks are so very friendly, and they are always able to answer whatever question I have about the menu.

Hopdoddy Burger Bar in Scottsdale

My favorite burger place in all of Arizona is Hopdoddy Burger Bar. While some other burger places come close, Hopdoddy is a full point ahead of the rest of the burger places in town.

So far, I’ve tried about 6 of the burgers and have never been disappointed.

I wrote about this place a few months ago, and decided to make a return visit. My finding? It’s still the best burger in Scottsdale!

hopdoddy scottsdale terlingua

The main picture at the top of this post is the Terlingua Burger from Hopdoddy. It has chili con carne, Tilamook cheddar, and corn fritos! I love it!

magic-shroom-burger

The burger above is the Magic Shroom Burger which has goat cheese from Arizona, field mushrooms, mayo, and pesto. Delicious! The goat cheese goes amazing with burgers!

hopdoddy scottsdale menu

Here’s a picture of the menu at Hopdoddy. So you can choose your burger before you head in!

hopdoddy scottsdale

Here’s a photo of the location in Scottsdale, AZ.

hopdoddy scottsdale beers

Lots of beer on tap!

hopdoddy scottsdale milkshake

Awesome milk shakes! This is a chocolate milk shake!

magic-shroom

Another shot of the Magic Shroom Burger.

hopdoddy scottsdale burger

Here’s what the interior of the restaurant looks like.

line

The line for ordering.

Getting there:

Hopdoddy Burger Bar
11055 N. Scottsdale Rd.
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
Phone: (480) 348-2337

 

 

Sip Coffee & Beer House

Have you been to Sip Coffee & Beer House in Scottsdale? If not, you absolutely need to stop in here and spend an hour enjoying the scene. It’s a beautiful coffee shop and beer house. With windows on nearly every side of the store, this place is filled with beautiful light from the street, and in the winter months they open the doors and windows.

seating-scottsdale

Ok, so there are just a few things I’ll say about Sip.

1. They have awesome coffee and I’ve written about that numerous times.

synesso

2. They have a wide selection of beer, from local and national vendors, as well as international. It’s a craft beer wonderland in Scottsdale.

sip-coffee-hummus

3. They serve an amazing hummus platter (spicy hummus!).

4. The interior is beautiful and well decorated, with comfortable seating, and it’s big!

beer-list-scottsdale

5. Awesome patio and comfortable outdoor chairs and tables.

6. They serve breakfast and lunch.

7. They have plenty of free parking and are located in Old Town Scottsdale.

sip-coffee-beer-house

8. The owners are local, and kept the old Needlework sign and attached it to the ceiling.

9. They have live music every week which they announce online. They’re open most days from 7 am to 9 pm, and 11 pm on weekends.

beer-sip-coffee-beer

10. Super friendly staff, and they’ll let you start a tab so you can keep ordering all day long without having to pull out your wallet.

So, stop and smell the roses, and the coffee at Sip Coffee & Beer House!

Getting there

Sip Coffee & Beer House
3617 N Goldwater Rd.
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
Phone: (480) 625-3878

Fired Pie (Scottsdale)

I’ve positively reviewed Fired Pie in the recent past, and I’d like to offer another take as I’ve recently revisited.

Fired Pie is stingy. Yeah, from the moment they begin adding toppings to your custom pizza, they are stingy with the ingredients. I’ve seen this on multiple visits to the Scottsdale location. On my most recent trip, I overheard other customers discussing this as well.

For example, after they add each ingredient they ask “is that all?” It’s like they’re hoping I won’t add more ingredients to my pizza and they can throw it in the oven.

Also, they go really slow when adding the ingredients and don’t add them liberally. So, when they ask you after each ingredient “is that all?” it never is all, because you realize you want more. So, naturally you ask for the next ingredient you see that looks good. Granted, you could add every single ingredient to your pizza and I think they would add them, but who wants 8 kinds of meat on their pizza? I’d much rather get lots of pepperoni for the ultimate pepperoni pizza.

I’ll definitely be back, since it’s becoming a family favorite to design your own pizza.

Getting there

Visit their web site at firedpie.com for locations and directions.

PHOENIX
(deer valley towne center)

CHANDLER
(raintree ranch)

SCOTTSDALE
(scottsdale rd & greenway-hayden loop)

PHOENIX
(park central)

NORTH SCOTTSDALE
(northsight & raintree)

Thai House

I am now ready to crown Thai House as the best Thai food restaurant in the valley. I’ve been to most of the cool places around town, and I keep coming back to Thai House. We tend to visit the location on Shea Blvd., however we’ve also visited the location near the 101.

thai-house-panang-curry

We go to Thai House frequently and our typical order lately has been the following:

  • Panang Curry with Chicken
  • Pan Fried Noodles with Chicken

pan-fried-noodles

If we’re really hungry, we’ll order a couple of appetizers, like the chicken or peanut sauce.

Thai House has a 4 star review with more than 100 reviews on Yelp. The staff are absolutely the most friendly people. We’re definitely “regulars” because they recognize us, and know what we normally order.

peanut-sauce-thai-house

I’ll include some photos of these dishes here, as well as the peanut sauce which is absolutely delicious. It’s a tad bit spicy.

I’ll be doing some additional reviews as time goes by, as I’m working to review literally every item on the menu. I can heartily recommend every single curry dish, as I’ve tried them all.

Thai House On Shea
6949 East Shea Boulevard
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
Phone: (480) 991-5004

Thai House
15576 N Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85260-1915
Phone: (480) 607-2214

Superstition Marketplace
1155 South Power Road #121
Mesa, AZ 85206
Phone: (480) 924-1623

Waffle Love: Are these the best waffles in Arizona?

My family has a bit of a crush on the Waffle Love food truck.

Pretty much any time the waffle truck hits our part of town, we go. So, when they recently announced a fall special — pumpkin waffles, we had to go!

menu-waffle-love

I’ve written about Waffle Love before, but this time I tried more of the options. Waffle Love, if you aren’t familiar with it, is a food truck that travels around the state providing tasty Belgium Liège waffles to any person who wants and pays for them.

pumpkin-waffle-love-banana

Real Liège waffles are one of life’s little indulgences. They are caramelized sugar on delicious buttery-sweet waffle goodness beneath. They’re really delicious, and making a comeback. There are several food trucks and breakfast places in Arizona now serving them.

wafle-love

Briefly, I’ll just say the ingredients are always fresh at Waffle Love. The waffles are some of the best I’ve had, and they’re an excellent value, at around $6/each.

The pumpkin waffles were really quite good, and I hope they become an regular item on the menu. I have a suspicion it will make a comeback every October.