With its central location between Scottsdale and downtown Phoenix and an abundance of upscale homes, it's really no surprise that the Arcadia neighborhood has become one of the Valley's favorite dining spots. Several of the spots on this list come from familiar names in the metro Phoenix restaurant scene, but don't discount them as chains — they showcase the best these local restaurant groups have to offer, in both service and culinary creativity.
Whether you're looking for an upscale dinner option or the ultimate neighborhood eatery, Arcadia has an option that will fit the bill.
Just around the corner from that casual spot, you'll find Crudo, one of the Valley's top dining destinations for elevated cuisine and craft cocktails. Chef Cullen Campbell's signature Italian-inspired cuisine is always exciting. The menu includes a selection of housemade cheese, crudos (raw seafood dishes), and handmade pastas. But some of our favorite dishes come off the restaurant's grill, including the yellowtail collar and short rib with bone marrow. Over on the bar side of the restaurant, you'll find Micah Olson and his crew of talented bartenders slinging some of the city's best boozy creations. The seasonal cocktail menu always feature fresh, innovative creations, but for classic drinks, this is also one of the best spots in town.
Why is it so hard to resist this giant restaurant perched on the south side of Camelback Road just east of 44th Street? The answer is quite simple: Because The Henry has it all. It's part neighborhood coffee shop, part date-night destination, and part Sunday brunch spot, all in one. On one side, you'll often find Arcadia residents typing away on laptops while sipping lattes, fresh cold-pressed juice, or other drinks from the casual coffee shop, while on the restaurant side, you'll find tables enjoying The Henry's eclectic menu of New American fare. There's something for everyone to like at this multipurpose dining spot — you'll find short rib potstickers and guacamole alongside Skuna Bay salmon and steak on the dinner menu, while brunch means bagel and lox, carrot cake pancakes, and egg white scrambles. With excellent service, a full bar, and super-chic décor, there's not much more you could ask for in a neighborhood restaurant.
If it's seafood you're craving, then look no further than Buck &Rider, the new restaurant that opened on the southwest corner of Camelback Road and 44th Street in mid-2015. Brought to the neighborhood by LGO Hospitality, the restaurant is reliably well-appointed with an open patio offering views of Camelback Mountain and an impressive bar in the spacious dining room. Order from the raw bar, which includes a selection of fresh oysters, crab, shrimp, and more, or from the list of entrees like blackened redfish Veracruz, Hong Kong-style halibut, and grass-fed filet mignon. For something a little less expected, the restaurant also serves a list of non-traditional sushi rolls that feature ingredients such as Jonah crab, roasted almonds, and garlic chives.
In the crowded dining scene of the Gaslight Square Shopping Center, Nook Kitchen easily could be overshadowed by the larger, higher-profile restaurants. But rather than fading into the shadows, this cozy little eatery manages to stand out as a great option for those seeking a low-key dining atmosphere. With an easy-to-love selection of pizzas and other Italian fare (think chicken marsala and bruschetta, but also a bone-in pork chop), Nook earns a spot as one of the neighborhood's most approachable restaurants. With a glass of wine and some good company, this is one of the best places to relax in Arcadia.
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Ingo's Tasty Food
Though this round, metal building crowded on the corner of 40th Street and Campbell might look just a little bit silly, there's absolutely nothing funny about the restaurant's kick-ass burgers. Ingo's Tasty Food, brought to the Arcadia neighborhood by the same folks behind La Grande Orange, serves a menu of sandwiches, salads, and grass-fed beef burgers, as well as appetizers including deviled eggs and shattered potato chips. Most of the seating is on the outdoor patio, where you'll find families (and often their four-legged friends) digging into dishes such as the Farmer's Daughter burger. Topped with dijon sauce, fol epi cheese, and sauerkraut it's a take on a classic Reuben sandwich — and one of our favorite burgers in all of Phoenix.
Originally published April 28, 2015. Updated February 16, 2016.