Best Southwestern Restaurant (2002)


For a place that's about as Southwestern as they come, the Valley sure doesn't have a lot in the way of Southwestern cuisine. Yet when we've got Southwestern along the lines of Medizona, we don't really need any more restaurants than this one. Medizona is where we send every single visitor we know, so proud we are to show off how interesting our cuisine can be. It's not pure Southwestern, touched with Mediterranean influences, but still, it shows how much deeper our heritage is than just jalapeos, tomatillos, tacos and quesadillas.

This is desert with daring, flaunting appetizers like blackened shrimp with white bean hummus, mango-olive salsa and charbroiled tomatillo sauce, or eggplant tacos with lamb, arugula, kasseri cheese, cucumber-radish relish and roasted tomato-garlic sauce. Entrees are edgy, like charbroiled prime tenderloin of beef with potato-leek gratin plus butternut squash, spinach, smoked bacon and provolone-cheese-filled green chile in sun-dried cherry barbecue sauce. And we challenge any out-of-towners to find anything comparable in their burg to Medizona's to-die-for dessert of prickly pear tiramisu in Turkish coffee-pistachio sauce.

When we want to savor the Southwest, we find all the best of Arizona in our very own Medizona.


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