Friday, August 1, 2014 at 11 a.m.
Last year we marked the hundred day countdown to Best of Phoenix by sharing some of our favorite food folks' "Personal Best" lists. This year we're bringing back our list of 100 Favorite Dishes. Have a suggestion for a dish you'd like us to try? Leave it in the comments section or email email@example.com.
38. Boricua from Republica Empanada
See also: 5 Best Restaurants in Mesa Right Now
We've always been fond of the sweet and savory turnover called the empanada and since last year, the Valley's go-to spot for the portable dish has been Republica Empanada. Longtime Mesa residents Jinette and Edmundo Meraz opened the restaurant with their son, Marco, who serves as general manager last summer. And though the restaurant is small, it's big of character with a hand-painted mural telling the family's story and connection to Mesa in bright neon colors.
There are sweet and savory empanada options to explore, but our favorite is the Boricua empananda. Inside each doughy turnover, you'll get a mixture reminiscent of arroz con gandules: pernil, rice, pigeon peas, and ham hock. It's all cooked in a sofrito sauce to bring together a dish that offers a surprising amount of Puerto Rican flavor for its small size.
Plus at just $3 each, you should be able to enjoy at least a few.
Miss a dish?
100. Pork Belly Pastrami from Citizen Public House
99. French Onion Soup from Bonjour Vietnam
98. Whiskey Cream Gelato from Marrazo That's Amore
97. Breakfast Croissant from Cartel Coffee Lab
96. Salmon "Yasu Style" at Yasu Sushi Bistro
95. Cannoli from DeFalco's Italian Deli
94. Falafel Sandwich from Al-Hana Restaurant
93. PBLT at Bootleggers
92. Samosa from Little India
91. Combo Plate from El Pollo Supremo
90. Brunch Burger from Orange Table
89. Duck Fat Fries from Bourbon Steak
88. Kurobuta Pork Chop from Noca
87. Carne Adovada Enchiladas from Los Dos Molinos
86. Maple Bacon Doughnut from Rainbow Donuts
85. Pad Khing from Nunthaporn's Thai Cuisine
84. Mariscos con Arroz from Tumi Fine Peruvian Cuisine
83. Chicago Dog from Portillo's Hot Dogs
82. Lemon Bars from Phoenix Public Market Cafe
81. Preserved Pickle and Pork Noodle Soup from Asian Cafe Express
80. Maine Lobster Roll from The Maine Lobster Lady
79. Lengua Tacos from Asadero Norte de Sonora
78. Black Licorice from Super Chunk Sweets and Treats
77. Cracker Jack from House of Tricks
76. Chicken Achari Curry from Curry Corner
75. Lavender Berry Lemonade Popsicle from AZ Pops
74. Truffle Bikini from The Tavern
73. Lemon and Basil Chicken Salad Sandwich from Essence Bakery Cafe
72. Oaxaca Special Burro from Carolina's
71. Texas Po' Boy from Texas BBQ House
70. Thai Noodle Soup from RedThai
69. Breakfast Sandwich from Lux Central
68. Deep Fried Duck with Taro from Hong Kong Asian Diner
67. Chicken Pot Pie from The Duce
66. Alfajores from El Chullo
65. Chashu Ramen from Sushi Ken
64. Yukon Gold from The Parlor Pizzeria
63. Crispy Pig Ears from Bar Crudo
62. French Fries from Cafe Bink, Bink's Midtown, and Bink's Scottsdale
61. Croissant Bread Pudding from Ollie Vaughn's
60. Kale Caesar Salad from Original ChopShop Co.
59. Chilaquiles from La Tolteca
58. Farmstead Goat Milk Caramel from The Simple Farm
57. Pistachio Chicken Liver Pate from The Gladly
56. Paitan Ramen from Umami
55. Nopales and Longaniza Taco from El Tlacoyo
54. Chicken Feet from Great Wall Cuisine
53. The Oggie from Cornish Pasty Co.
52. The Lady from Short Leash Dogs
51. Pork Belly Pibil from The Mission
50. Mixed Grill from Copper Kettle
49. Oxtail Noodle Soup from China Magic Noodle House
48. Two Meat Plate from Little Miss BBQ
47. PB&B Burger from Welcome Diner
46. West Lake Soup from New Hong Kong Restaurant
45. Short Rib Hot Pot from Lucky's King Wah
44. Ful Medames from A.T. Oasis Coffee & Tea
43. Spinach Spaetzle from Beckett's Table
42. Onion Rings at Joe's Farm Grill
41. No. 2 Crepe from Jobot Coffee
40. Buttterfish Tataki from Roka Akor
39. Grilled Octopus from Virtu Honest Craft
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