The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

Help: Utah and Arizona or Bust!

[Preamble: This is one of those not real entries. Which doesn't necessarily mean it's fake. But it is photo-less and food review-less and probably not what you're looking for. But thanks for reading anyway! Unless you're not reading, in which case, POOOT!]

I am not going to Utah. But Clare is! She asked me if I could help her find some fooding advice or Utahians (that's totally not the right term, is it?) who live around Orem/Provo (she can't get to Salt Lake City). I obviously have nothing of value to tell her about Utah, but maybe you do? HUH? [pokes you violently...whoops, sorry] I don't know Clare in real life, but trust me, SHE IS COOL, I just know these things. Please leave a comment on her blogpost if you have any advice, or leave some here in case I ever go to Utah. Which is kind of unlikely. But you never know. I don't think I even HAVE any readers in Utah.

I am going to Arizona! Phoenix to be exact. Actually, Tempe to be exacter, but I'm landing in Phoenix. When shall I make the state of AZ quake with my overbearing weight? August 5th to the 11th. (Yes, yes, I've heard the cracks about the heat and high probability of death from the heat, but I've lived through summers in Taipei and those just suck. Besides keep you slim because you sweat away most of your body mass.) I am not really looking for food advice since I will have a few guides to show me the calorically dense light [rubs hands together excitedly], but if you are dying to recommend something to me, go ahead. Or if you wanna meet up (not that I suspect I have many readers in Phoenix), let me know!


Deb / May 30, 2007 2:03 PM

Hey Robs,

Good luck with AZ in Aug. I remember heading out there for summers as a kid because my maternal grandparents lived in Sun City. If you can, try to get up to Sedona. It's gorgeous, you can find very good food there, and the sunsets/sunrises do amazing stuff to the surrounding red rock. Also, be sure to have authentic Mexican food while you're out there. There's a lot of chain-y stuff to avoid, but ask your locals to direct you to the good places.

Safe travels!

eternal / May 30, 2007 5:08 PM

I lived in Phoenix/Tempe for about seven years. It is hot, not humid like Taipei, but at least you have A/C everywhere in Phoenix.

I can't help you with the gourmet restaurants there these days because there are tons more than when I lived there, but places you might try are:

1. Four Peaks Brewery - Yes, it is a bit fratty, but you are in a college town after all. The beer bread sandwiches are really, very good as well as the oatmeal stout milkshake.

2. If you happen to be in Mesa for whatever reason, try the Euro Cafe for delicious Mediterranean food.

Have fun in strip-mall heaven!

Michelle / May 31, 2007 12:16 AM

AZ really isn't that bad. I don't live in metro Phoenix more in the outskirts in a new community. I would suggest you see Jerome, AZ. I have been itching to go and hear it's amazing there.

Good luck!


Jamie / May 31, 2007 1:39 AM

Ha, you do have a utah reader and one living in Provo infact. That's me. I'm from Ventura, California, but I've been living here for about 7 years. I've been lurking around your blog for probably over a year now too shy to say anything until now. Because I can tell you some AWESOME places to hit in the Provo/Orem area. You'd be surprised at the variety, I'd say.

#1. Sweet's Polynesian Grill (711 Columbia Lane in Provo) Anything you get there is excellent. They do a great BBQ chicken and kalhua pig.

#2. You can not, I repeat CAN NOT skip out on J.Dawg's in Provo (700 East on the southeast side of BYU's capus). This place has the best hot dogs in the valley, probably the whole state. It's a groovy little shack where you can get beef or polish dogs with this amazing secret sauce that keeps people coming back for more. The police department has gotten pretty chubby this last couple of years from eating there pretty much daily. So yes, J. Dawg's in Provo.

#3. People rave about a Provo Mexican restaurant called Los Hermanos (16 West Center Street)

#4. The Bombay House (463 North University Avenue). Excellent Indian cuisine. Opened in Provo in 1993 by a former BYU student from India. It's really outstanding. Excellent Naan. Excellent kurma and tikki masala. You can't go wrong there. Totally authentic and tasty.

#5. then there's the Brick Oven (111 East 800 North in Provo). It's kind of the University's pizza place. Great pizza, but they offer a lot of other things. They make their own rootbeer. Apple beer is huge out here too. It's pretty tasty. I'm not sure if ya'll get it out east or not.

So those are my top 5. That would be awesome if your friend could let you know if she hit any of these places, or YOU someday! Definitely hit In-N-Out Burger in the AZ. I miss it everyday. EVERYDAY.

roboppy / May 31, 2007 8:20 AM

Deb: I think my friend said she had a fave Mexican place, so I'll put that on the list. And thanks for reminding me that I should do stuff that doesn't have to do with food, like see amazing sunsets! :D

eternal: As long as I don't feel like I'm wading through a cloud of sticky should feel fine. And yes, A/C helps.

Thanks for the suggestions! Yay strip malls; sounds like NJ!

Michelle: I haven't heard of Jerome before but thanks for letting me know about it! I'll see if I can go there. I suppose I'd have to drive a

Jamie: Whoa, hello reader from Provo! Thanks for delurking (and for sticking around for a year). ;) ...And for giving all the recommendations to ensure that Clare's tummy doesn't cry. Now I want hot dogs, and I never want hot dogs. But I like food that comes from shacks. HOW CAN I RESIST?!

Clare / May 31, 2007 2:00 PM

Wowza! Thanks Robyn, for posting this for me! Now I have lots of good restos to try in Orem/Provo - who woulda thunk it?

Clare / May 31, 2007 2:03 PM

Sorry if this reposts - I tried once before and it got lost in the black hole that is the Internet.

Thanks to everyone for their suggestions! Now I am actually looking forward to the trip! And props to Robyn to helpin' me out on this one! :)

Tracie / May 31, 2007 6:22 PM

Hi, also a Utah fan here. Found your link via, well, awhile ago.

Anyway, jumped over to Clare's site & recommended Asuka & Guru's.

Have fun in AZ & remember it's a dry heat ;)

chloe / June 1, 2007 4:55 AM

Hi, I am a fan of your blog! You're so funny and the pictures that you take are so pretty!

I'm from Singapore btw. =)

tulips / June 1, 2007 1:33 PM

I grew up in Phoenix, and while I don't have any oustanding culinary destination recommendations, I urge, nay, beg you to try some authentic Sonoran Mexican cuisine while there. I now live in California where there is Mexican food aplenty, but it ain't the same - regional Mexican food varies wildly and I frequently hungrily daydream about the Sonoran Mexican dishes I grew up on. Be sure to have a cheese crisp, crispy style, with salt and salsa!

roboppy / June 1, 2007 5:11 PM

Clare: Thanks to you I know I have readers in Utah! :D

Tracie: I shall cavort among the dry heat!

Chloe: Thanks for reading! I hope to visit Singapore sometime. More so if I BUILD UP A FAN BASE THERE, WOO!

Tulips: I look forward to trying ANY good Mexican food, as I'm not sure I've ever had...very good Mexican food. Good food, at least? I'm not familiar enough with it to really know. I'll look out for Sonoran Mexican cuisine.

rachel Brambila / June 2, 2007 10:05 PM

In Phoenix, if you like spicy Mexican, there is Los Dos Molinos on Central near Dobbins. Great bar-food tacos can be had in Tempe at the Tavern on Mill, it's down towards the lake. Enjoy your stay in the Valley of the Sun!

Matthew Chung / June 4, 2007 4:37 PM

Hey, longtime reader from Phoenix coming out of the shadows to heed your call- Currently a culinary student in Scottsdale, and there's definitely some good food to be had out here--you've just got to search for it. Atlas Bistro and Twisted, two of Carlos Manriquez' restaurants, are two of my favorite spots. Granted, I'm a little biased since I worked for the man, but he does what I like to call 'true fusion' (ie, concept-free). Basically, he travels about 3 months out of the year, and comes back with new flavors he's discovered. Oh, and Atlas Bistro changes their entire menu daily and successfully, a feat I've never seen pulled off by any other chef I've worked for.

Sol y Sombra is another great spot. Located in North Scottsdale, it's probably the best Spanish food available in the valley. Can be loud and obnoxious on weekends, but the food is out of control.

louanne / June 4, 2007 11:22 PM

in n out burger if you haven't tried it already! best burgers for fast food, make sure you get the fries and a shake (although i'm more a coke person).

i heard that phoenix has a bison witches as well ( I used to live in tucson, but it's a great sandwich. get the half soup half sandwich with the bread bowl. favourite is beef and brie - mustard is to die for (honey mustard big plus too!)

and try some poore brothers jalapeno chips.

man i miss arizona.

roboppy / June 5, 2007 1:10 AM

Matthew: Thanks for coming out of the shadows! SUNLIGHT, IT IS GOOD FOR YOU.

Annnd thanks for the recs, they sound very tasty. I figure you work for the man for a good reason. :)

Louanne: IN N OUT, YES!! Yes yes yes. And shakes. And sammiches! Those all sound perfect, thanks for the recs!

Emily / June 6, 2007 2:53 PM

In Phoenix, try San Carlos Bay seafood restaurant. It's Mexican seafood like you never imagined. Very informal restaurant, a good place to get to know the locals, and you must try the seafood tostadas and seafood cocktails (not sure they're called that), which are like ceviche, with avocado. Also try the red snapper with garlic sauce.

The southwestern corner of Arizona is very close to the Sea of Cortez (aka Gulf of California), so it's not as weird as all that to find excellent seafood in Phoenix.

chasgoose / June 7, 2007 3:21 AM

Bisonwitches= bad news bears. If I can't come back to Phoenix I am making Alex take you to Pizzeria Bianco. He is back in the states and we went last night and it was even better than I remembered. And Chris Bianco said thanks to me as we left and I was so excited it was like a celebrity acknowledged my existence! So what if he did it to everyone that he noticed?

You also have to go to Cowboy Ciao which is like this crazy mishmash of southwestern and mediterranean food. Its 1 part tex-mex, 1 part italian, and ALL DELICIOUS. They have this amazing salad with a buttermilk pesto dressing that makes me feel like salad is not a sacrifice and this dish that is basically BBQ pulled pork over creamy polenta covered with queso fresco and dried cranberries that is the best thing ever. It's like meat pudding! But in a delicious non-threatening way. It's wonderful. Make Alex take you they have vegetarian options too.

roboppy / June 9, 2007 2:24 AM

Emily: That's a lot of food to try, but I'll see what I can do. ;) I haven't had Mexican seafood before...

Charlie: Sweet jesus, Pizzeria Bianco looks soooooo goooooooood. I'm there. And they have sammiches! Ahhh I want those too.

I would love some bbq pork over polenta and tastiness and things. Alex will never turn to the dark side of pork, will he? Sigh. [shakes head]

chasgoose / June 10, 2007 1:38 AM

The sammiches aint no thing and they are totally at a different location WITH NO SEATS! WHO MAKES A SANDWICH SHOP IN THE MIDDLE OF A CITY WHERE NO ONE WALKS ANYWHERE WITH NO SEATS! It makes me angry. Although now I will be moving within walking distance so maybe I will like it more.

Pizzeria Bianco is totally legit tho. I had this amazing pizza with roasted onions and fennel sausage which was like the best thing I have ever put in my mouth (suck it Upton Sinclair) like ever (including all the delicious things I put in my mouth in Paris) of all time. Alex had this awesome pizza with red onions, parmigiano cheese (that had been put on before cooking so it got all crusty and toasty and delicious), rosemary and pistachios. It was so good it single-handedly helped him get over not being in Paris.

Unfortunately he will never turn to the dark side of pork (his loss). Although if anything could make him it would totally be that pork n puddin stuff with the BBQ pork and creamy polenta.

roboppy / June 11, 2007 1:47 AM

CHARLIE, you need to make yourself a food blog! Or else...I'll write about everything you talk about and take all the glory.



Um, those pizzas sound so amazing. Jebus.

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