20 Christmas Dining Options in Metro Phoenix in 2016

More than a few Valley restaurants are ready to serve on Saturday, December 24, and Sunday, December 25 – a.k.a. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Whether you need a break from your overly decorated house, or just really enjoy lobster bisque, turkey carving stations, or Yule logs, metro Phoenix eateries are ready to play host. From the Scottsdale Resort’s Christmas Brunch to stunning overviews of Paradise Valley during Christmas dinner at elements, here are 20 options for fantastic meals during Christmas weekend.

Grill Kitchen & Bar
Guests are welcome to dine at Boulders Resort & Spa in Carefree for the Christmas Eve dinner at the Grill Kitchen & Bar. They’ll be serving from a three-course menu with starters like lobster bisque with lobster claw fritter and an arugula salad served with bacon-wrapped dates, brie, spiced walnuts, and pomegranate vinaigrette. Main courses include beef chateaubriand with root vegetables, petite twice-baked potatoes, and béarnaise, or seared diver scallops served with cauliflower raviolo, traviso, and saba. Dinner is from 5 to 9 p.m. on Saturday, December 24. Cost is $55 per guest. Reservations can be made through the concierge at 480-488-7317, or by visiting The Boulders' website.
Phoenix City Grille
Billed as the Valley’s favorite neighborhood tavern, Phoenix City Grille is offering a Christmas Eve special in the uptown area thanks to executive chef Rory Hewitt. Choose from meals like roasted prime rib with guajillo chile jus and smoked onion rings, roasted garlic whipped potatoes, and creamy horseradish for $31, or seared diver scallops with winter squash polenta, chile-cured bacon, and crispy Brussels sprouts complete with a cranberry Champagne gastrique for $32. Hours for Saturday, December 24, are 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Reservations are accepted but not required. For more information, call 602-266-3001 or visit the Phoenix City Grille website.
T. Cook’s
Enjoy a prix-fixe dinner prepared by executive chef Todd Allison on what will be a very filling Christmas Eve at T. Cook's at the Royal Palms Resort & Spa. The three-course holiday menu starts with options like Maine lobster bisque and Maple Leaf Farms duck confit tortellini, followed by entrees like roasted all-natural Diestel turkey breast, Glacier 51 sea bass, and pan-sautéed Maine diver scallops. Dessert includes espresso mocha valencia entremet and gingerbread cake. Dinner is $95 per guest, and $29 for kids 6 to 12 years old. Dinner runs December 24 from 4:30 to 9:30 p.m.; with the same menu offered on Christmas Day from noon to 8 p.m. Reservations are required 602-808-0766.
Texaz Grill
The friendly Texaz Grill staff is serving guests cod Victoria this Christmas Eve as a one-night-only special. The eight-ounce North Atlantic cod fillet will be baked with wine, lemon, garlic, and butter – have mercy – and comes with a dinner salad and choice of potatoes. You can also pair it with one of four winter drinks specials: the Cowboy Coffee, Hot Buttered Rum, Tito’s Peppermint Patty, and Mexican Egg Créme. The Grill’s cod Victoria entrée will be served on December 24 from 4 to 10 p.m. for $14. To make reservations for Christmas Eve, call 602-248-7827.

Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails
Found at the Kimpton Hotel Palomar Phoenix, Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails is offering two meals come Christmas Day. Come for the Christmas breakfast buffet from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for $36 per guest, or after gift exchanges from 4 to 9 p.m. for the Christmas dinner. Dinner includes the regular menu along with Christmas specials like the blackened rib eye with dauphinoise potato, charred broccoli, and chile for $38, or the miso-glazed sea bass, served with bok choy, wild mushroom, forbidden rice, and ginger buerre blanc for $42. Reservations are recommended at 602-258-0231, or the Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails website.
Celebrate the holidays with the “Christmukkah” dine-in menu at Chompie’s, which highlights the fact Hanukkah is coinciding with the week of Christmas this year. Traditional holiday menu items include oven-roasted turkey, homemade stuffing, latkes, matzo ball soup, candied yams, and fresh-baked pies. The “Christmukkah” menu features turkey breast with stuffing, cranberry relish, beef brisket, stuffed cabbage rolls, filet of salmon, and chicken schnitzel. Cost is $20.99 per guest and $10.49 for kids under 10 from December 24 to January 1 – specifically 11 a.m. 9 p.m. on Christmas Day (the Tempe location closes at 3 p.m.).
Cities Bar & Grille
Take a break from the slots or make the Lone Butte Casino your destination for the day thanks to the Cities Bar & Grille Christmas Day brunch. This Chandler restaurant is offering a salad bar, plenty of breakfast food, steamy sides, and stations galore. Find stations for omelets, pasta, waffles and blintzes, and protein carving with slow-roasted prime rib. Brunch is served from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for $32 a guest – $27 if you have a Player’s Club card. And if you missed brunch, check out the Café 24/7 Christmas Day Menu served from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at $12 per person, which follows the Café 24/7 Christmas Breakfast Buffet from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at $14 a person.
Set at the upscale Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain in north Scottsdale, elements is offering a Christmas Day dinner completely encircled by crystal-clear views of surrounding Paradise Valley. The resort restaurant is offering a four-course, prix-fixe menu on Christmas Day at $90 per person, $29 for kids 6 to 10, and free for young ones 5 and under before tax and gratuity. Christmas Day dinner runs from noon to 9 p.m., and Sanctuary is offering “Home for the Holidays” packages to stay overnight in case you don’t feel like buttoning your pants and making the trip home.
Hotel Valley Ho
Downtown Scottsdale's Hotel Valley Ho has its kitchen fired up for Christmas day dining as well. Find the full Hotel Valley Ho Christmas buffet in Sands – a venue within the hotel – from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Price is $59 per person, and $19 for children 12 and under before tax, gratuity, and well, alcohol. Hotel Valley Ho’s on-site restaurant, ZuZu, will also be serving from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m for breakfast, lunch, and dinner – which will include braised goose, slow-roasted prime rib, and eggnog crème brûlee. Advance reservations for the buffet and restaurant are required, and can be made at 480-421-7997.
J&G Steakhouse
Located within Canyon Suites at the Phoenician, J&G Steakhouse is offering a Christmas menu on both Christmas Eve and the big day itself. Select items like roasted butternut squash salad, sautéed red snapper, and warm chocolate cake, all for $65 per guest. For more information or to make reservations, call 480-214-8000 or visit the J&G Steakhouse website.
Royal Palms Resort & Spa
Look forward to a holiday buffet this Christmas morning, hosted by Royal Palms Resort & Spa. There’ll be carving stations for slow-roasted Heritage turkey, omelets and eggs to order, seafood like chilled poached shrimp, oysters, and crab claws, cornbread stuffing, and desserts like chocolate hazelnut torte. Cost is $85 per guest, $29 for children 6 to 12, and free for kids 5 and under. Reservations are required at the Royal Palms Resort & Spa website, or at 602-840-3610.
The Palo Verde Restaurant
Find a prix-fixe, four-course menu during the Christmas Day dinner at the Palo Verde Restaurant – set at the scenic Boulders Resort & Spa in Carefree. Start off with grilled radicchio salad followed by holiday menu items like bacon-wrapped duck breast with stuffed almond and persimmon, and aged beef rib eye served with smoked corn pudding. And for dessert? White chocolate eggnog cremeux. Dinner is $65 per guest, and is available from 5 to 10 p.m. Make reservations through the concierge at 480-488-7317, or visit The Boulders website.
The Phoenician
Christmas Day brunch is yet another way to gift yourself on the morning of December 25. Make your way to Il Terrazzo at the Phoenician for seating between 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., and take in an assortment of protein cuts from the carving stations, salads, seafood, and an array of seasonal sides – plus plenty of dessert. Cost is $115 per guest, and $57.50 for children ages 3 to 12. Reservations are required at 480-423-2530. See the Phoenician's website for more details.
The Scottsdale Resort at McCormick Ranch
Unless you still have presents to open, make your way to the Scottsdale Resort at McCormick Ranch for a brunch-style buffet by Chef Dupere. The Scottsdale’s Christmas brunch offers made-to-order omelets, a crêpe station, and carving stations with brined turkey and mesquite-glazed bone-in ham. You’ll also find a seafood bar, salads, and Yule log for dessert from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Vista Verde Dining Room. Brunch is $68 per guest, $34 for children ages 5 to 12, and free for kids 4 and under before tax and gratuity. Reservations are required at 480-596-7522.
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Lauren Cusimano was the Phoenix New Times food editor from 2018 to 2021. Joys include eating wings, riding bikes, knowing everyone at the bar, talking too much about The Simpsons, and falling asleep while reading.