The Spot in Gilbert, where owner Brian Kingdeski talks family values and bringing homemade classics, at an affordable price.
Although an undeniably Google-unfriendly name, "The Spot" fits this restaurant like a glove. With dexterity that reveals Kingdeski's decades of experience in the restaurant biz,a 13-foot-wide retail space has been transformed into the kind of place where you'd want to drop by for a leisurely lunch.
Painted in a lively color-scheme of turquoise and orange, the lunch and dinner spot offers just two tables with seating for 16 in the main dining area. Above sits a lofted "mezzanine," and patio tables outside offer a view of Gilbert's "urban farm" community, Agritopia. And if that's not enough cutesy-ness to make you want to drop in, get this: They'll deliver within a half-mile radius...via beach cruiser.
Kingdeski grew up in up-state New York in a family, like so many others, that didn't eat out much. That meant time spent cooking with mom (he was the youngest of three) and learning his way around the kitchen from a young age. He translated his appreciation for a home cooked meal into the offerings at The Spot, and had passed on the skills to his own three children.
"I love to cook and all my kids do too," says Kingdeski. "They were very young and handling knives, cooking and doing all this stuff in the kitchen. So all my kids, if you come over and want something to eat, they'll cook. Even my little girls cook."
With the regular help from the kids as well as his wife Tracy, Kingdeski hopes to make The Spot a neighborhood hangout for locals.
"We want people to get the neighborhood feel and feel welcome. Other places around here, we had friends that would go there everyday and no one ever knew their name. No one ever asked."
Kingdeski on the other hand, makes a point to learn regular customer's names - and orders. When we dropped in for lunch we greeted several diners by name.
And the effort appears to be paying off.
"Working here has changed my whole outlook on tips...in a very good way."