Old Town Scottsdale didn't exactly need another good coffee shop option — but it was screaming for a little diversity (the Fifth Avenue Shops boast a Cartel outpost; Sip down the street serves Cartel as well), so we're happy we not only got a shop serving famed San Francisco roaster Four Barrel, but along with it the unexpected, delightfully Porsche-themed nature of the shop, tucked into a little garage next to a multiuse space. Fourtillfour is quality performance in a compact and sleek package, just like a classic Porsche. The menu is short, simple, and built for speed.

Press Coffee Roasters at Scottsdale Quarter

Slow and steady wins the race. Press Coffee Roasters is nowhere near the flashiest of roasters in town, but when it comes to a having a warm, welcoming staff and a high-quality product, Press continues to deliver. And it doesn't stop there; the roaster is also know for its cold brew, served both in standard fashion and tapped with nitrogen as well, creating a luscious, creamy texture that has us craving more.

Top's Liquor

Looking for a rare spirit? Maybe you heard good things about that quadruple nitro triple-hopped IPA from the friends who've tried everything good and bad so that you don't have to? Head to Tops. The offerings in this Tempe liquor store are piled together and overflowing — in a manner that's arguably charming — in an attempt to stock as much as humanly possible onto their shelves and into their fridges. Go ahead, dust off that bottle, create your own six-pack of everything you needed to cross off your to-drink list. You're at Tops, where pretty much anything is possible, and, thanks to the knowledgable staff, findable.

Juice Core
Nikki Buchanan

Let's face it, juice bars can be intimidating. They're usually full of energetic, healthy people who just finished a marathon run or yoga sesh and need to replenish their fine-tuned bodies with pure fruit-and-vegetable goodness. But whether you're a pro athlete or just struggle to eat your daily recommended dose of greens, there's nothing to fear at Old Town Scottsdale's Juice Core. This tiny juice shop offers everything from hardcore, no-fruit, all-green juice cleanses to super hydrating smoothies and even some simple food options. Best of all, the shop's staff are usually happy to help you decide on a product, asking what you're looking to achieve through the powers of organic, cold-pressed juice.

Palo Verde Lounge
Jacob Tyler Dunn

For many, the Palo Verde Lounge is a beloved oasis known for its jukebox, strong drinks, and some Tekken Tag faceoffs. But this neon-lit, band-sticker-laden, cash-only Tempe establishment at Beck Avenue and Broadway Road is known for yet another neighborhood treasure: the Pickle Shot. Acting as a night starter, eye opener, and for some, a holiday tradition, the Pickle Shot comprises a shot of well tequila or whiskey with a pickle juice chaser. So, it's not mixology at its best, but it gets the job done. And though this award is for the Pickle Shot alone, a quick pro tip here: If you ask them to add a shot of hot sauce to the tequila or whiskey, you've now got yourself a Tijuana Hooker shot. Just saying.

Citizen Public House

After all these years, Citizen Public House still remains a valid threat to pretty much any other happy hour in town. Not-your-average bar snacks — still-warm roasted rosemary nuts, beer cheese fondue, popcorn slicked with bacon fat — hold down a menu next to a well-known rotation of barrel-aged cocktails, poured generously, especially considering the $6 price tag from 3 to 6 p.m. every day the doors are open. The vetted bartenders have a knack for making the bitter, boozy stuff go down easier than it should — a cool smile goes a long way. All of this and more are available at one of Old Town Scottsdale's classiest haunts.

Clever Koi
Heather Hoch

When it gets to be prime time in Phoenix, when dinner plates go whizzing by, when seats are saturated and the bubbly diner talk boils to a gentle rumble, you'd count yourself lucky to have scored a seat at Clever Koi's bar — or better yet, the patio, which, east-facing as it is, gets itself a pastel backdrop each and every evening. A good view makes anything taste terrific — terrific-er in the case of the consistently great drinks under co-owner Joshua James' careful guide. Whether it's for Fourth of July fireworks or blowing off a little post-work steam, The Clever Koi is where you should let a good drink tell all and a great drink cure all.

Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour
Lauren Saria

Plenty of sensible people like to begin a night out when the sun goes down — which means dinner at 7, 8, or even 9 p.m. But at that juncture, when the next sensible thing to do is get a great cocktail and keep the night going, Phoenix leaves one wanting should you desire to stay out past 10 or 11 p.m. We must be grateful, then, for establishments like downtown Phoenix's Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour, which aim for quality — and do so till 2 a.m., when the law says they no longer may. Most food sucks in those final hours of the night, especially bar food — but not at Bitter & Twisted, where Bob Tam's penchant for re-imagining classic Asian dishes in the style of upscale American comfort food (like the steam bun burger, with chili oil dipping sauce) is both tasteful and tasty.

How to cure your Sunday morning hangover, La Cruda-style: Take a glass of tomato juice, add a healthy splash of clamato, a squirt of tabasco, a squiggle of chamoy sauce, a sprinkling of Tajin chili seasoning, and some lime. Garnish with shrimp, a couple of celery sticks, and a hunk of chewy carne seca, aka beef jerky. At least, that's how the folks at Clamatos La Cruda ("cruda" is Mexican slang for hangover) recommend you come back to life, and it's pretty hard not to feel fully replenished after one of their post-hangover, alcohol-free mariscos-style cocktails on the menu at this east side hangout spot. Along with the menu of clamato-based drinks, this small eatery also offers snacks like shrimp tostadas, tacos, and fruit salad. Plus, there's a crockpot of complimentary seafood broth by the counter, designed to give you a quick, life-giving boost of sodium.


Crudo
Crudo

A good margarita, like a daiquiri or an old fashioned, should be easy to get right, and yet the really good ones are so few and far between. Do most places over-complicate it? The ingredients — good tequila, orange liqueur, fresh citrus, and a salted rim — are simple enough to bore some, making the marg ripe for riffing. Crudo, being an Italian joint, is thematically about as far as things get from Mexico and its native margarita.

But Crudo's proximity to the border and the bar's commitment to quality in all things spirits and cocktails means co-owner Micah Olson feels the pressure to not only get it right, but to make it delicious and uniquely high-quality. No strange riffs here. It's by the book. Furthermore, as you could guess by this point, he nails it.

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