Restaurant Reviews

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Calf-Fry Castle Calf-Fry Castle
Venerable feed lot reopens
, April 21, 2005
I may pique the interest of Michael Jackson fans by saying so, but who knew that the, uh, cojónes of young calves would make such a... More >>
So-So Sushi So-So Sushi
A big fish story
, April 14, 2005
Submitted for your consideration: the worst sushi I've had since I made the mistake of walking into a Todai many years back. Sushi that makes... More >>
Lust for Laab Lust for Laab
Fresh flavors restore our critic's faith in food
, April 07, 2005
We need some new rules here on the Ponderosa, and the first one is that for every bad meal I have to endure, my belly deserves to be placated... More >>
Road Kill Rules Road Kill Rules
Off-track in more ways than one
, March 31, 2005
Is it possible to predict a lousy dining experience as soon as you enter a chow house, without a peek at the bill of fare? You betcha. For... More >>
Chauvinist Pig-Out Chauvinist Pig-Out
Real men do eat ceviche
, March 24, 2005
Harvard prez Larry Summers has been excoriated in the past few months by feminists, fellow academics, and the politically correct for suggesting... More >>
Bulgarian Rhapsody Bulgarian Rhapsody
, March 17, 2005
A lot of what's appealing about greater Phoenix falls into the classic can't-judge-a-book-by-its-cover category. I don't mean the lusher parts of... More >>
Shabu Debut Shabu Debut
Hot-pot options made for each other
, March 10, 2005
Ah, the smell of chocolate and meat! Two great tastes that taste great together. Okay, maybe not. Still, this is what my olfactory nerves deal... More >>
Operation Oggie Operation Oggie
Feeling a little Cornish? Here's your spot
, March 03, 2005
God, I could go for a pint of Stella Artois, or "wife-beater," as it's sometimes referred to in merry ol' England. I'm in a black-and-white box... More >>
Embarrassment of Riches Embarrassment of Riches
Scottsdale 'hood gets another creative supper spot
, February 24, 2005
Some bastards have all the bloody luck. Say, a year ago today, you signed a lease or bought a residence near 70th Street and Shea Boulevard in... More >>
Thrill Near Mill Thrill Near Mill
Meatball lovers and wine wonks have a new destination
, February 17, 2005
Might there be some redemption for what I like to call the swill on and around Mill? As I mentioned in my recent write-up of Mucho Gusto Taqueria... More >>
Sultans of Shish Sultans of Shish
Lemons follows Mike Tyson for Russo-Uzbek eats
, February 10, 2005
I have the funny feeling Mike Tyson knows something I don't. Other than how to land a right cross that'll knock a 230-pound boxer on his ass.... More >>
Donovan's New Digs Donovan's New Digs
A new entrant in a competitive meat market
, February 03, 2005
Does Phoenix really need another steak house? That's what pops to mind considering the recent arrival of the swank, upscale Donovan's near 32nd... More >>
Watt's Good for You Watt's Good for You
Chandler gets an Ethiopian restaurant
, January 27, 2005
Tina Tamrat Hildebrand laughs and smiles shyly when I play reporter rather than gentleman, and ask her age. This fetching little Ethiopian lady... More >>
Taste Magnet Taste Magnet
Tempe has the goods, and here's where to find them
, January 20, 2005
The ker-plunk and whoosh is most pronounced right around the intersection of Tempe's Fifth Street and Mill Avenue, or, as I like to call it, the... More >>
Golden Autumn Golden Autumn
Old standby earns longevity
, January 13, 2005
I'm convinced there's a conspiracy of dunces out there, hell-bent on making the dining experience as consistently staid and by-the-numbers as an... More >>
Stingray Stung Stingray Stung
These fish need a little more schooling
, January 06, 2005
Sitting in the dark-orange, Dr. No-like bar at Scottsdale's Stingray Sushi, drinking a tall glass of Kirin draft and watching the promising... More >>
My Lucky Seven My Lucky Seven
Tastes of 2004 that stuck to the ribs
, December 30, 2004
On the whole, 2004 has been a good year for this portly penman, as enjoyable dining experiences have easily outweighed poor ones. Indeed, what... More >>
Picking St. Nix Picking St. Nix
A little supping for Christmas
, December 23, 2004
What a colossal difference a second visit to a restaurant can make. See, my modus operandi as a critic is generally as follows: I pick a place I... More >>
Bada Bomb Bada Bomb
An offer you can refuse
, December 16, 2004
Everyone knows about Pavlov's dogs: those canines that helped Russian scientist Ivan Pavlov demonstrate that the natural flow of saliva in... More >>
South Mountain Mojo South Mountain Mojo
Mexican cuisine done right at Coyoacán
, December 09, 2004
Hey, I may come off in print as a bloated narcissist, but I do get my comeuppance often enough. Take, for example, a question I had for a... More >>
Meet Cute Meet Cute
Dueling luncheonettes
, December 02, 2004
It's a fine Tuesday morning, and I'm seated at a table in Matt's Big Breakfast, the new diner that opened a month ago on First Street and... More >>
Grazie, Radda Grazie, Radda
Peace and plenty at new Tuscan joint
, November 25, 2004
I've always loathed Thanksgiving, so don't expect some column from me telling you how to cook a turkey with a beer can stuck up its butt, or... More >>
Korean Feastin' Korean Feastin'
Seoul food
, November 18, 2004
Folks call and write me with some amazing requests. Usually, I do my best to reply in a timely manner, but occasionally, the inquiries veer into... More >>
The Prince of Pasta The Prince of Pasta
Mangia at Marcellino Ristorante
, November 11, 2004
I've been jonesing of late for some really excellent house-made pasta. No doubt what brought this on was my slightly disappointing visit a couple... More >>
Delux and De-lovely Delux and De-lovely
Great grub to be had while soccer moms snooze
, November 04, 2004
I am terribly pained that all the fuss concerning the Boston Red Sox, the World Series, and the Curse of the Bambino is finally over. Not that I... More >>
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