See Also: 10 Favorite Drive-Thrus in Metro Phoenix
Let's face it, the music that streams through the speakers of a restaurant has the ability to make or break your dining experience. We know of a sushi shop that only plays religious music, a Mexican food joint that can't turn down the top 40 bangers, and a vegan restaurant that pumps in the techno beats so loud our plates rattle -- and no matter how delicious the foods is, we just can't subject ourselves to such terrible music choices.
Now, we're not saying that we're experts in the music department (we leave that to our siblings at Up On The Sun) -- to each her own -- but when we go out to eat, we definitely like to enjoy a good set of tunes with our meal. These ten restaurants already had our hearts with their food but they doubled their points in our books with their awesome music selections.
Windsor -- If your restaurant has a wall made up of old cassette tapes, you'd better have a good playlist. The fun and friendly Windsor Restaurant and Bar in Uptown Phoenix pairs their cozy menu with tracks from the 80's and 90's with a few modern day rock faves thrown in the mix for good measure. Beastie Boys, The Cars, Tears for Fears, Devo, Violent Femmes, and a little bit of action from the Foo Fighters, Weezer, and The Black Keys will keep your toes tapping while you sip on a cocktail or three.
The Parlor Pizzeria -- Our favorite Biltmore area pizza parlor puts as much soul into their vintage playlists as they pour into their tasty pizzas. The re-purposed mid-century building fills with the sweet soul sounds of Al Green, Marvin Gaye, and Lee Fields & The Expressions with a little bit of old school Jamaican ska tunes from Desmond Dekker and The Skatalites and raspy funk beats from Charles Bradley. Pop in after a long day at the office for an earful of relaxing tunes paired with a Brass Monkey cocktail and a Salsiccia pizza.
Pita Jungle -- Experimental hip-hop, melodic indie rock, distinguished jazz, and quintessential 60's pop -- you never know what's going to be coming out of the speakers at this local chain of healthy eating restaurants but it's always going to be good. Beach Boys, The Helio Sequence, Rogue Wave, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Charlie Parker, Pinback -- a unique selection that never disappoints to match unique eats that are always on point.
Praying Monk -- From the reclaimed wood walls to the heartbreakingly good beer selection, the creative menu, and a playlist that matches our very own iPod -- we're smitten with chef Aaron May's latest restaurant venture. Indie rock tunes from Brad Sucks and Modest Mouse mingle with classic tracks from Stevie Wonder and James Brown, electro-pop from Little Dragon and Empire of the Sun, and favorites from Beck. It's an upbeat mix that makes Praying Monk's amazing happy hour even happier, the Left Coast Hop Juice hoppy-er, and the crispy pig ears tastier.
The Astor House -- The Coronado Historic District's newest spot for small plates and hand crafted cocktails pumps out tunes from indie favorite singer/songwriters like Feist and Cat Power, combined with distorted noise pop guitar riffs from Wavves, Ganglians, and White Denim, lo-fi songs from No Age, and a few mainstream tracks from bands like Mumford & Sons and Fleet Foxes. Always the perfect playlist to go with a refreshing gin & tonic mixed with locally made High Spirits gin and a splash of house made tonic water.
Brat Haus -- As if an awesome beer selection, even better brats, and a killer patio weren't enough, Brat Haus throws a soundtrack of top 40 hits, indie faves, and 90's classic rock into the mix. Lady Gaga, Pearl Jam, Jack Johnson, The White Stripes, and Micheal Franti can all be heard throughout the newly renovated space. Enjoy the tunes during an afternoon of Belgium beers, exotic brats, and chewy pretzels.
Circle H Barbecue-- Owner Bill Sandweg has a soft spot for blues, alt-country, and the outlaw country hits and you can hear it loud and clear and his Melrose District barbecue shop. Everything from Muddy Waters and Robert Johnson to Johnny Cash and Lou Reed can be heard while you're stuffing your face with his slow cooked and hickory smoked ribs and meaty sandwiches.
The Main Ingredient --Restaurant owner and beer buff Matt Diamond is not only dedicated to the craft of good food and great beer -- he's extremely dedicated to the craft of good hip hop. Grab a seat on the patio or in the dining room and enjoy tracks from De La Soul, MF Doom, Tribe Called Quest and Souls of Mischief with a little soul from Al Green. The beats are always top notch just like the ale house and cafe's signature sandwiches and local beer selection.
Lux -- This super hip coffee shop/bar/eatery/public house plays an eccentric list of classic hipster hits from artists like Nick Drake and Belle & Sebastian mixed with ambient, slowcore tunes from Low and Washed Out and upbeat tracks from Jeremy Fisher and Allison Weiss. The soundtrack definitely caters to the hip, artsy, young professional types that frequent the shop for their morning coffee and evening cocktails.
FnB -- Restaurant owner, front-of-house master, wine geek, Chow Bella contributor and all around character Pavle Milic isn't shy about what drives the music at his quaint Scottsdale eatery -- it's for his own enjoyment. And who can blame the guy, he's ALWAYS there. Thankfully, his taste in music is downright amazing -- FnB just wouldn't be the same if he was into ICP or Skrillex. Pavle's selection is made up of whimsical tracks from Andrew Bird and Stars, uplifting tunes from New York's Caveman, the heartfelt crooning of The Avett Brothers, and the sultry sounds of Sharon Van Etten.
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