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Now Open: Rico's American Grill

Rico's American Grill opened this weekend adjacent to the Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort boasting classic American fare with a Southwest twist and keeping hush-hush the fact its executive chef is still TBD.

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Rico's American Grill opened this weekend adjacent to the Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort, boasting classic American fare with a Southwest twist and keeping hush-hush the fact its executive chef is still TBD.

UPDATE:Kenneth Arneson, formerly of the Radisson Fort McDowell Resort and Casino, is the new executive chef at Rico's.

The eclectic mix of food delivers on the farm-fresh basics promises, even without a chef at the helm.

Best bets from our Friday night preview: Wild Mushroom Flatbread with goat cheese and roasted garlic; Fish Tacos with black beans, chipotle mayo, pico de gallo and roasted corn salsa; Pan-Roasted Chicken Chop over sweet potato mash with thyme jus and green beans; and for dessert, the Caramel Bread Pudding, which has a more bread-like texture than most with white chocolate and macadamia nuts.

Click through for the items to skip and the story behind the mercury moniker and mining decor....

If Rico's amped up the salads and other flatbreads while toning down the signature Rico's barbecue sauce on the pork chops, those could also stand a chance, but as of now, aren't memorable.

Named after a now-defunct mercury mine, General Manager Teri Agosta says she scoured Arizona for artifacts to use in the restaurant's remodel. When Agosta found some Rico miners, she says, "I purchased all the gear they had, straight out of the barn where it'd been sitting since the mine closed." Pick axes, shovels, canteens, and other prospecting equipping adorn the walls, and old-school lamps hang above the bar. We're just hoping they've been fully sanitized... (Agosta assures us they're mercury-free.)

You can find more information about the Rico Mercury Mine here, but if you want a look at it, your game plan should be to head to Rico's; Highway 51 has paved over the original mining site.

Rico's serves three meals a day and has a full bar, check out the menus at www.ricosag.com.

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