We're working up our appetites for our huge Best of Phoenix issue, out September 30, with daily servings of Chow Bella's 100 Favorite Dishes from across the Valley -- in no particular order
Leave your suggestions for upcoming favorites in the comments section.
Visit our sister blog, Jackalope Ranch, for a companion series on 100 Creatives who make Phoenix a little more interesting for all of us. We'll be posting the next 11 picks daily through the rest of the summer.
Number 12: Rustica pizza at Cibo
It seems that pizzaiolo Guido Saccone has created a pie to suit every mood at Cibo (one of my favorite downtown haunts) and I've eaten every single one over the years. I love them all, truly. How to pick just one to call a "favorite dish"? I've really given it some thought.
The Rustica wins out -- it's always in the lineup for me, and the times I've recommended it to people, they've loved it too. This pizza has always hit the spot.
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It's a white pie, smothered in melted fresh mozzarella and baked in the wood-fired oven before getting a blanket of thinly sliced proscuitto and fresh arugula just before it leaves the kitchen. The contrasting textures and flavors is so appealing.
And the crust -- wow. It's blistered and chewy and a little bit smoky. That's the common denominator to all of Saccone's pizzas, and why every one is a gem.
The Favorite Dishes, so far: 13: Garlic Dip at Pita Jungle 14: Tableside S'Mores at Frank & Albert's 15: Delux Burger at Delux 16: Tagliatelle at The Parlor 17: Banana Cream Pie at Cork 18: Morning Glory Benedict at Morning Glory Cafe 19: AZ Sweet Shrimp Po'Boy Sliders at District American Kitchen 20: Oaxaca Special at Carolina's 21: Chicken Tikka Masala at Guru Palace 22: Hirame Carpaccio at Nobuo at Teeter House 23: Hot Pressed Tuna at La Grande Orange 24: Chilaquiles at La Tolteca 25: Pho Tai Nam at Da Vang 26: Olive-Oil Poached Arctic Char at Kai 27: Pulled Pork at Joe's Real BBQ 28: Falafel Sandwich at Haji-Baba 29: Payt-N-Bake Chicken at Caffe Boa 30: Thai BBQ Chicken at Thai E-San 31: Sweet and Spicy Burger at The Grind 32: Kimchi Chigae at Ewha Korean Restaurant 33: Red Chile Beef at Verde 34: Garlic Shrimp at Hope Kee 35: Antipasto Platter at Pizzeria Bianco 36: Beef Fried Noodles at China Magic Noodle House 37: Grilled Calamari at Andreoli Italian Grocer 38: Spicy Miso Ramen at Sushi Ken 39: Fish 'n Chips at Rula Bula 40: Corn Pancakes with Crab at The Mission 41: Santa Lucia Pasta at Marcellino Ristorante 42: Smoked Truffle-Infused Filet Mignon at Christopher's 43: Pollo Colonial at Iruna 44: Mozzarella Carozza at Aiello's Fine Italian Dining 45: Mofongo at El Coquito 46: Sticky Toffee Pudding at St. Francis 47: Steak Frites at Metro Brasserie 48: Black Cod with Acini de Pepe at Cafe Bink 49: Steak & Egg Sliders at Lon's 50: Taco Monterrey at Pepe's Taco Villa 51: Toro Tartare at Sushi Roku 52: Fish Tacos at Barrio Cafe 53: Reuben at Matt's Big Breakfast 54: Short Ribs at J&G Steakhouse 55: Mole Poblano at Los Sombreros 56: Chicken Fried Steak at Texaz Grill 57: Carne Asada on a Potato Pancake at The Vig 58: White Flannel Hash at Orange Table 59: Butterfish Tataki at Roka Akor 60: Eggs Maximilian at Harlow's Cafe 61: Chickpea Ceviche at Bombay Spice 62: Spiced Skirt Steak at Tuck Shop 63: Rib Eye Philly at SanTan Brewing Company 64: Albacore With Black Truffle at Crudo 65: Slice at Jimmy & Joe's Pizzeria 66: Lee's Combination at Lee's Sandwiches 67: Duck Curry at Sala Thai 68: Chicken Kabab at Med Fresh Grill 69: Cheese Course at Sweet Republic 70: La Potence at Le Chalet 71: Brisket at Bryan's Black Mountain Barbecue 72: Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup at The Roosevelt 73: Coq Au Vin at Vincent's Market Bistro 74: Cochinita Pibil Tacos at La Condesa Gourmet Taco Shop 75: Char Siu Bao at Phoenix Palace 76: Huevos Rancheros at Gallo Blanco Cafe 77: Italian Stallion at La Piazza Al Forno 78: Bourekas at Spices Mediterranean Kitchen 79: Warm Maine Lobster Salad at Modern Steak 80: Escargots En Croute at Petite Maison 81: Salumi at Quiessence 82: Okonomiyaki at Hana Japanese Eatery 83: Croissants at Essence Bakery Cafe 84: Coronado Coney at The Main Ingredient 85: Green Chili at Rito's Mexican Takeout 86: Soup Gyoza at Sens Asian Tapas & Sake Bar 87: Pop Cho and Sweet Ginger at The Breadfruit 88: La Jawab Kadahi Gosht at The Dhaba 89: Chicken & Waffles from Lo-Lo's 90: Burrata at Humble Pie 91: Bruleed Foie Gras Torchon at Posh 92: Moroccan Nomad Stew at Chakra 4 93: Peking Duck at Gourmet House of Hong Kong 94: Mozzarella Sandwich at Pane Bianco 95: Egg White Omelette at Fez 96: Machaca From Los Dos Molinos 97: Shish Taook from Baiz Market 98: Pasties From Cornish Pasty Co. 99: Clams in Black Bean Sauce From Asian Cafe Express 100: Bruschetta From Postino