First Taste

Justin Beckett's Southern Rail: Southern Food Requires A Little More Soul

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See also: Sumo Maya in Scottsdale: Mexican Style Pho and Korean Beef Tacos

The space itself is pretty impressive. Everything from the reclaimed-looking painted wooden ceiling to the chandeliers fits the restaurant's persona as an upscale Southern dining spot.

And upscale it is -- or at least the price tags are. Entrees start at $20 a person and top out at $27 for prime flatiron steak. Small plates range from $8 to $12, while salads and sides of vegetables will set you back about $10.

We started out with a drink from Southern Rail's cocktail menu, the That Dog Don't Hunt. We were intrigued by promises of two spirits -- rye whiskey and mezcal -- mixed with maple syrup, lemonade, and two kinds of locally made bitters. On the first sip we mostly picked up the distinct aromatic orange flavor of AZ Bitters Lab's Orange Sunshine Bitters, as well as a touch of sweetness from their Figgy Pudding Bitters. With a second sip we thought we detected the smokiness from the mezcal, but mostly the drink just tasted like bitters and lemonade.

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Lauren Saria
Contact: Lauren Saria