Closed for Business

Metro Phoenix's 60 New Restaurant Openings, and Nearly a Dozen Closings, of 2017 So Far

The concise cocktail menu at Restaurant Progress strikes a balance between three lighter cocktails featuring fresh citrus and juices (shown above, often with savory touches) and two darker, boozier options.
The concise cocktail menu at Restaurant Progress strikes a balance between three lighter cocktails featuring fresh citrus and juices (shown above, often with savory touches) and two darker, boozier options. Shelby Moore
The year is off to a busy start, with something in the neighborhood of 60 new restaurants opening and at least 10 closing their doors for good. Though a few of the shuttered spots will be sorely missed, the five-dozen newbies that have opened in their places include some hot additions to the Phoenix dining scene. The top 10 have already been chosen, but there's plenty more on the list to check out.



The Whining Pig, Arcadia
The third location in this chain of wine and beer bars, the new Arcadia spot is on East Indian School Road. Food offerings include a pretty impressive selection of grilled cheeses.

Halal Guys, Tempe
New York City transplants, rejoice. You don't have to hop on a plane to grab the city's ubiquitous chicken and rice, served from carts on corners across the city. Instead, just head to the standalone location in Tempe, which just opened on Rural Road.

Original Carolina's Mexican Food, Avondale
Carolina's is expanding into Avondale and will be offering all the same classics — homemade tortillas, enchiladas, menudo, and more — at the newest outpost.

Ladera Taverna y Cocina, Phoenix
Taking the space where Corbin's Bar and Grill once stood, this Mexican bar and restaurant is from the same people behind the Vig, Cobra Arcade Bar, and the Little Woody.

The Dressing Room, Phoenix

The new spot offers a mix of different dishes, according to its menu, including Korean yakatori, a fish taco, and a dish called "shrimp and fish."

MJ's BBQ — Chicken & Fish, Phoenix
There's a new barbecue joint to try in central Phoenix. MJ's is on the southeastern corner of Washington and 24th streets.

Jobot Coffee & Diner, Phoenix
That's showbiz, folks. One month you're on our closings list and the next you have a shiny new location right on Roosevelt Row, replacing Oliver's Sophisticated Bean.

Even Stevens, Tempe
The sandwich place with a philanthropic philosophy continues its expansion into Tempe, after recently opening a location in east Phoenix.

Blaze Fast Fire'd Pizza, Phoenix
Picky about how you top your pizza? Blaze is a part of the customizable pizza trend sweeping Metro Phoenix, now on the northeastern corner of Bell Road and Ninth Street.

Rehab Burger Therapy, Tempe
In a move that will definitely appeal to the "hungry college student" demographic, Rehab Burger Therapy now is  serving up burgers on Sixth Street, right off Mill Avenue.

click to enlarge An impressive presentation at Hachi Ramen. - JACOB TYLER DUNN
An impressive presentation at Hachi Ramen.
Jacob Tyler Dunn
Hachi Ramen, Tempe
This place offers "traditional authentic Japanese ramen" with homemade and natural ingredients.

Nonna Urban Eatery, Scottsdale
The menu at Nonna is a mix of pasta dishes, such as homemade fusilli with pesto genovese, and small plates, including yellowtail sashimi.

Breakfast Kitchen Bar, Scottsdale
Scottsdale does not seem to be in short supply of breakfast places: joining chains like First Watch and the Breakfast Club, Breakfast Kitchen Bar offers a smorgasbord of options, including all the classics.


Restaurant Progress, Phoenix

This new spot in the Melrose District of central Phoenix is led by 25-year-old Chef TJ Culp — it's a colorful restaurant with a full bar. Dishes include hamachi crudo and New York strip steak.

Thai Delight, Phoenix
The Ahwatukee restaurant offers Thai cuisine on Chandler Boulevard, with vast lunch and dinner menus.

click to enlarge Taste of Thai offers takeout classics and homestyle regional Thai dishes. - JACOB TYLER DUNN
Taste of Thai offers takeout classics and homestyle regional Thai dishes.
Jacob Tyler Dunn
Taste of Thai, Phoenix
Thai food must be a theme for Phoenix-area restaurants this month. Taste of Thai offers a lunch special for $7.95 on its menu.

Pokedon, Tempe
The poke trend continues its expansion, now with this restaurant in Tempe.

The 5-Spot, Phoenix
We're intrigued by the concept of the 5-Spot, which promises $5 food and drinks every day from open until closing time.

Outta Bronx, Phoenix
Outta Bronx, now open on the southeastern corner of McDowell Road and 40th Street, promises "New York style street food" like pastrami and other gooey, meaty sandwiches.

The Rooster Tavern, Scottsdale
This rooster-themed bar in north Scottsdale near the Scottsdale Airport serves meatball sliders, wings, and other American bar fare.

Dolce Vino Wine Bar Italian Cuisine, Glendale
Dolce Vino promises live music on its website — that plus a varied wine list could make for a decent night out for those seeking Italian cuisine.

Modern Market Eatery, Scottsdale
This sit-down eatery in Scottsdale offers food to those following strict diets, including paleo, celiac, and vegan-friendly fare.

Poke Spot, Scottsdale
Just in case there weren't enough options in the area to try the new Hawaiian poke trend, Poke Spot has just opened on Scottsdale Road in north Scottsdale.

Mora Italian, Phoenix
A chic, high-energy modern osteria from celebrity chef Scott Conant and restaurateur Stefano Fabbri, Mora is set to be the highest-profile opening of the spring.


Pho Vn Vietnamese Cuisine, Phoenix
It looks like there's a lengthy list of different pho at this new restaurant in Phoenix on the corner of Thunderbird Road and 19th Avenue.

613 Grill, Phoenix
Get ready for a kosher grill option in Phoenix, right on Seventh Street between Glendale Avenue and Bethany Home Road.

Uberrito, Phoenix
Another location for the Tex-Mex chain — this time on Indian School Road.

Haldi Indian Cuisine, Phoenix
The menu includes dosas, a Southern Indian dish that consists of a filled pancake, made with a special kind of batter.

click to enlarge Brunch is a must at the Smith. - JACOB TYLER DUNN
Brunch is a must at the Smith.
Jacob Tyler Dunn
The Smith, Phoenix
The Smith appears to be a trendy new spot on Indian School Road near 36th Street, serving breakfast with cage free eggs, plus sandwiches and salads.

Doughbird, Arcadia
Sam Fox's newest restaurant at 44th Street and Indian School Road is a crowd-pleaser, with a slightly bizarre-sounding concept of rotisserie chicken and pizza.

El Panzon y Frida, Scottsdale
Color us intrigued by a new tapas destination on Shoeman Lane in Old Town Scottsdale. The ambitious menu offers grilled octopus served with spicy aioli and pomegranate, a goat cheese mousse with red wine compote and smoked lamb pastrami on rye.

J's Kaiyo Sushi + Bar, Scottsdale
In the strip mall on Miller Road near Old Town, this restaurant is the newest in the competition to dominate Scottsdale's sushi scene.

Ahipoki Bowl, Tempe
The poke trend has made it to ASU's part of town, with Ahipoki Bowl opening up on Rural Road next to the new Halal Guys restaurant.

Teabo, Goodyear
This new spot in Goodyear is dedicated to serving "coffee and sandwiches," according to its minimalist website. The menu also offers an interesting mix of vermicelli, rice bowls, and tea.

Bush's Chicken, Glendale
The new fast-food chain hails from Texas, serving up your traditional fried-chicken meal combinations.

Smokin Fins, Chandler
With sushi, soup, and other fish dishes, a lot is offered on the modern menu at this seafood-themed Chandler eatery.

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Felicia Campbell has written about food, culture, and cars for digital and print publications all over the world and is the author of The Food of Oman: Recipes and Stories from the Gateway to Arabia (Andrews McMeel, 2015). Her husband learned quickly that she’d rather get a bag of avocados than a bouquet of roses.