Feature

10 Phoenix Convenience Stores We Love

D's Market in a super-stocked South Scottsdale mainstay.
D's Market in a super-stocked South Scottsdale mainstay. Allison Young
The best convenience stores are more than the sum of their goods. They’re there for you when you need a Cheetos fix or when you run out of TP, but they also act as mind readers, presenting the perfect ice cream, craft beer or even scented candle you didn’t even know you needed. They’re that convenient. Here are 10 Phoenix corner stores you can’t live without.

click to enlarge Take a selfie with the Sunshine Market mural. - ALLISON YOUNG
Take a selfie with the Sunshine Market mural.
Allison Young

Sunshine Market & Deli

2302 North 12th Street

The Sunshine Market is pure sunshine. A fixture in Phoenix's historic Coronado neighborhood, the building has gone through facelifts and ownership changes, but not much has changed in its 30-plus years. With everything from electrical tape to rolling pins, Coronado regulars stop in for fix-it and baking supplies in a pinch while neighborhood kids come in for candy and soda. They also have Press Roasters cold brew on tap, insane deals on craft beer (hello, a six-pack of local Nimbus pale ale for $5.99), and super friendly staff who know regulars by name.

click to enlarge Monsoon Market is a convenience store with style - and a sofa! - ALLISON YOUNG
Monsoon Market is a convenience store with style - and a sofa!
Allison Young

Monsoon Market

3508 North Seventh Street

Owners Michela Ricci and Koral Casillas did us all a favor with Monsoon Market. Like a corner store but way cooler, they combined all their favorite things, including stuff you’d find at the farmers market, local faves, fancy pantry essentials, and artisan gifts under one stylish roof. Grab a basket and fill it with Popped Artisan Popcorn, Peixoto Coffee, Noble bread, Simple Soda, Brightland olive oil, artsy magazines and swanky candles handmade in Tucson. “It’s all the stuff we’re craving so you don’t have to hunt around,” says Casillas.

click to enlarge Get local beer, lovely wine and nitro cold brew on tap at Urbo. - ALLISON YOUNG
Get local beer, lovely wine and nitro cold brew on tap at Urbo.
Allison Young

UrBo Urban Bodega

603 West Fillmore Street

Like a New York bodega, UrBo may be small, but it’s mighty stocked. The tiny shop on Fillmore Street packs in the essentials and more, with a mix of high (gelato and grass fed beef jerky), low (ramen and Twinkies), and local (Big Marble Ginger Beer and Four Peaks) stacked floor-to-ceiling. Yet despite the glut of goods, it doesn’t feel claustrophobic. Made-to-order food and frappuccinos are also on the menu, with all-day breakfast sandwiches and coffee by local roaster Xanada. Order up a nitro chai latte and get all the fixin's for breakfast: pancake mix, syrup, eggs, bacon, OJ and bubbly.

click to enlarge A Camelback Flowers bouquet from Air Guitar will brighten any day. - ALLISON YOUNG
A Camelback Flowers bouquet from Air Guitar will brighten any day.
Allison Young

Air Guitar

1566 South Higley Road, Gilbert

While most convenience stores aim to blend in, Air Guitar is all about standing out. If the name wasn’t a big enough giveaway, the impressive space is, taking up the corner of Ray and Higley roads in Gilbert with a 5,000-square-foot store flagged by floor-to-ceiling windows and a giant wraparound patio. Selling everything from cotton candy burritos to Dom Perignon, you’ll find grab-and-go sushi by Kaizen, beautiful bouquets by Camelback Flowers, pizza by the slice, a full coffee bar, and even an ice cream shoot on the patio.

click to enlarge "Don't be boring', try something foreign" at Pop's Exotic in Mesa. - ALLISON YOUNG
"Don't be boring', try something foreign" at Pop's Exotic in Mesa.
Allison Young

Pop’s Exotic Sodas & Snacks

423 North Country Club Drive, Mesa

Stocked with tough-to-find sodas and snacks – duck-flavored Lays, anyone? – Pop’s Exotic isn’t just a store, it’s a TikTok phenomenon. Customers take on food challenges, like eating the hottest gummy bear in the world or downing a fermented duck egg, and the more than 134,000 fans follow along. Owned by Michael Minnis, you’ll also catch glimpses of his miniature pitbull Cookie, plus closeups of imported snacks – think prosciutto and brie Cheetos from Japan, ketchup chips from Canada, and every iteration of Skittles you can imagine – backed by rap tracks.

click to enlarge Stock up on Japanese snacks at Fujiya Market in Tempe. - ALLISON YOUNG
Stock up on Japanese snacks at Fujiya Market in Tempe.
Allison Young

Fujiya Market

1335 West University Drive, Tempe

Just like a conbini in Japan, Fujiya Market starts with an “Irasshaimase!” greeting. From there, wind through aisles of Japanese beauty supplies, rice, ramen, tea, canned coffee, sake, dried seaweed, beer, and bento boxes. But the real standouts are the super selection of Japanese snacks, from chocolate Pocky and Hello Panda biscuits to dried squid and pizza-flavored chips. It’s like taking a trip to Tokyo by way of Tempe. Arigato!

click to enlarge El Paisano Market is neatly stocked from floor to ceiling. - ALLISON YOUNG
El Paisano Market is neatly stocked from floor to ceiling.
Allison Young

El Paisano Market

1035 East Lemon Street, Tempe

El Paisano Market has everything ASU students could need or want. Late night study sesh? Stock up on snacks and energy drinks. A night out to celebrate the end of exams? Cigars and high-end booze. A hangover to end all hangovers? Order up a hot Cheetos burrito or cheesy quesadilla from the market menu and hope it soaks up all the alcohol. Stocked neatly from floor to ceiling and open to the wee hours (4 a.m. on weekends), no wonder the steady stream of regulars call it El P’s.

click to enlarge Turney Village Market - ALLISON YOUNG
Turney Village Market
Allison Young

Turney Village Market

710 East Turney Avenue

Like the dive bar of convenience stores, Turney Village Market is more than meets the eye. Decidedly unglamorous, the outside is white with a red awning while the inside is slightly dingy with black walls and moderately stocked shelves. But there’s a familiarity when you walk in the door, a no-judgement vibe whether you’re buying a Pulparindo from the Mexican candy section or a bong from the smoke section. They also have a cooler section chock-full of beer, a case of sneakers and logo’d hats, and dried jumbo shrimp and $1 pickles by the cash.

click to enlarge Get candy and more at Milk and Honey in Tempe. - ALLISON YOUNG
Get candy and more at Milk and Honey in Tempe.
Allison Young

Milk and Honey Market

115 West Sixth Street, Tempe

A slice of a shop at the bottom of West Six Apartments in Tempe, Milk and Honey does indeed sell milk and honey, as well as all the convenience store basics from munchies to booze. But what really sets it apart are its coolers full of prepared foods where you can grab-and-go fresh fruit, yogurt parfaits, chicken wraps, and tiramisu, plus sliced-to-order pastrami, pepperoni, turkey, and ham sandwiches. Better yet, “Make it a Sparky” and get double meat. The only downside: Parking isn’t all that convenient.

click to enlarge D's Market in a super-stocked South Scottsdale mainstay. - ALLISON YOUNG
D's Market in a super-stocked South Scottsdale mainstay.
Allison Young

D’s Market

3640 North Miller Road, Scottsdale

It’s fun to play a do-they-have-it treasure hunt at D's Market, a south Scottsdale mainstay that has the usual suspects and way more. Marshmallows, check! Potato masher, check! Do-rags, check! Nag Champa incense, check! Raincoat, check! Not only do they have a huge selection of products, the mom-and-pop shop also gets points for its light and bright interior, friendly service, and ample parking.
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.
Allison Young has written about food, nutrition, and travel for Sunset, Women’s Health, Oxygen, Clean Eating, Mindbodygreen, and Prevention. Her local jam is food writing, where she happily eats her way across the Valley to discover the best hidden gems, hole-in-the-walls, pizza joints, and the latest Phoenix food trends. She also loves to pick Valley chef’s brains for their favorite food finds. On her website, TheGlitterList.com, she posts one thing she’s looking forward to each day, from food to books and podcasts.
Contact: Allison Young