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Best New American Restaurant Phoenix 2002 - House of Tricks

House of Tricks

House of Tricks

114 E. 7th St.

Tempe, AZ 85281

480-968-1114

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What do we love best about House of Tricks? It must be the setting, a small 1920s cottage with just 12 tables and an old river rock fireplace. Or maybe it's the patio, feeling like someone's front porch under a canopy of grapevines. Even as the restaurant has grown -- the property now includes a 1903 brick and adobe house next door -- the place has never lost its charm.

We think it's the wine list we love the most, selected from a temperature-and-humidity-controlled cellar holding more than 2,500 bottles. Surely, though, it's the food, a compelling blend of seasonal American accented with touches of Asia, Europe and the Southwest. Our favorite dish is lavender-and-herb-crusted ahi tuna seared rare with red curry sauce, risotto cake and sautéed greens. No, wait, we really adore the tenderloin au poivre, with sautéed potatoes and shiitakes in an herb butter sauce.

Okay, so it's simple. We love absolutely everything about this place. Nothing too tricky about that.

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