Restaurant News

October: 15 Restaurants Opened in Time for Snowbird Invasion; Cowboy Ciao Closed

The strawberry "shortcrepe" is topped with whipped cream, strawberries, and biscotti crumbs.
The strawberry "shortcrepe" is topped with whipped cream, strawberries, and biscotti crumbs. Samantha Pouls

Cooler weather, snowbirds, and 15 new dining options have arrived in metro Phoenix. A sweet and savory creperie, an organic and vegan café, an authentic New York-style bagel restaurant, and a lounge offering over 400 craft whiskeys are just a few of the new eateries that are now open for business. Sadly, seven restaurants did not survive the summer. The iconic Cowboy Ciao and Kazimierz World Wine Bar closed after years of business. Sharky's Tacos & Tequila and Rhema Soul Cuisine are among several other spots that have shuttered after relatively short runs.


Snakes & Lattes
20 West Sixth Street, Tempe

With more than 1,000 board games and card games, Snakes and Lattes is not playing around. This new bar and café has opened on Sixth Street in Tempe. Ownership’s mission is to create a community place where people can come down, turn off their phones, sit across from each other, and play games. The bar features 12 beers on tap. The Canadian-based ownership has ensured that items like traditional poutine make an appearance on the otherwise standard bar food menu.

Illegal Pete's
525 South Mill Avenue, Tempe

Illegal Pete’s new Mill Ave location is serving up loaded mission-style burritos, salads, nachos, quesadillas, and other South West staples. This Mexican restaurant is using high quality and responsibly sourced ingredients in all of its hand-made meals. Illegal Pete’s features a full bar and a wide selection of local drafts.

ATL Wings
3320 West Southern Avenue,  #120

ATL Wings’ fifth location has hatched. This well-known chicken wing spot originated in Atlanta and migrated to the Phoenix area in 2012. The straightforward menu features traditional and boneless wings with a choice of 12 sauces. All wings are served with homemade blue cheese or ranch dressing. Wings can be paired with french fries, salads, biscuits, and Kool-aid.

Yama Sushi House
1175 West Ray Road, #1, Chandler

Chandler’s newest sushi restaurant is serving up raw, fresh and tasty rolls. Hand-made rolls with Tuna, Salmon, and Yellowtail can be enjoyed in a modern casual dining area. Classic ramen dishes, salads and poke bowls are also available.

Whyld Ass Organic and Vegan
4810 North Seventh Street

Whyld Ass Organic and Vegan Café has opened its doors in Phoenix. This latest addition to the growing vegan restaurant scene is serving fresh baked goods, curry chickpea salad wrap, grilled cheese sandwiches, and other plant-based meals. Flavor-packed breakfast, lunch, and dinner can be enjoyed in the indoor/outdoor dining space or taken to go.

Mimi Forno Italiano
3624 West Baseline Road, #174, Laveen

Mimi Forno Italiano is one of the Phoenix area's newest Italian restaurants. Entrees like baked lasagna with meat sauce and Neapolitan pizzas are prepared in an authentic Italian wood-fire oven. Mimi Forno is located in a hip neighborhood and its modern and spacious dining room provides the perfect setting for a date night or family dinner. Finish your meal with one of the many decadent dessert items like cheesecake with berry sauce.

click to enlarge Another Crepe Club has opened, this one in Scottsdale. - THE CREPE CLUB
Another Crepe Club has opened, this one in Scottsdale.
The Crepe Club
The Crepe Club
7014 East Camelback Road, Scottsdale

Scottsdale says bonjour to its newest creperie. The Crepe Club is offering an assortment of both savory and sweet crepes made to order using only the freshest ingredients. Menu items like strawberry cheesecake crepes, smoked salmon crepe wrap, and turkey and Swiss croissants can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Bongiorno Bagels New York Deli
3107 South Gilbert Road, #101

This new bagel spot in Gilbert is delivering authentic, northeast-style bagels by replicating the water conditions of its home state of New York. Its vast variety of bagels are all kettle-boiled in this processed water to create a perfect balance of crispness, chewiness, and texture. In addition to mouthwatering bagels, Bongiorno Bagels is also serving artisan sandwiches made with Boar’s Head deli meats.

Bar Pesce
3603 East Indian School Road

After a six-year run, the well-known Japanese-Italian restaurant Crudo has been transformed into a new concept. Bar Pesce will feature upscale entrees that focus on showcasing locally sourced foods. The menu features several pasta, beef, pork, and seafood plates. The bar menu has been completely revamped and features a sizable selection of craft cocktails.

Hundred North Bar and Kitchen
100 North Gilbert Road, Gilbert

Hundred North Kitchen and Lounge is one of the latest additions to downtown Gilbert’s culinary scene. This upscale Mediterranean and American fusion restaurant will feature entrees like juicy lamb burgers and shawarma platters. Selecting a whiskey may be a daunting task with over 400 available options.

Jin Shabu
2055 North Dobson Road, Suite C4-6, Chandler

Jin Shabu is offering diners a tabletop cook-it-yourself experience. Thinly sliced platters of pork belly, brisket, or steak are served raw and ready to be dropped into boiling broth. Noodles, Shiitake mushrooms, onions, and other vegetables can be tossed into your broths to customize the soup to your liking. Both lunch and dinner are all-you-can-eat.

Four Silos Brewery Coffee and Beer
147 South Higley Road, #101, Gilbert

Four Silos Brewery of Gilbert is serving up craft Beer and Coffee. This microbrewery is located on the corner of Higley and Elliot roads in a building once occupied by Yo Waffle. House-brewed IPAs, Brown Ales, espresso, and lattes are just some of the drinks being poured. Pastries, paninis, thin-crust pizzas and other small plates can also be enjoyed in the cozy bar and dining area or on the wraparound patio space.

click to enlarge Newly opened Across the Pond cocktails will go deeper than those of Clever Koi (like this one). - CHRIS MALLOY
Newly opened Across the Pond cocktails will go deeper than those of Clever Koi (like this one).
Chris Malloy
Across the Pond
4236 North Central Avenue

A new sushi and cocktail concept has opened on Central Avenue in Phoenix. This Asian-style craft cocktail bar seats 35 in an intimate, minimalist dining space. Both the cocktail and sushi menu will be relatively simple. Guests can choose between six creative and modern cocktails and a small selection of hand-rolled sushi items.

The Buzzed Goat
4302 East Ray Road

A new locally owned coffee shop is brewing up its popular artisan java blends in Ahwatukee. This neighborhood coffee truck has opened its first brick-and-mortar location. They offer espresso drinks, a variety of hot and cold coffees, homemade baked goods, and several healthy meals.

Red Mountain Bar & Grill
2015 North Power Road, #106, Mesa

Red Mountain Bar & Grill has opened up shop in Mesa. In a space once occupied by BT’z Sports Bar, this moderately priced restaurant is serving up generous portions of stick to your ribs comfort food. Entrees like fish and chips, prime rib and mashed potatoes and a variety of handcrafted burgers can be enjoyed at the bar or in its spacious dining area.


Cowboy Ciao
Cowboy Ciao was a fixture of the Old Town Scottsdale dining scene since 1997. The restaurant menu featured a mix of Italian, Mexican and Southwest cuisine. A mid-November post on Cowboy Ciao official Facebook read “Unfortunately, an end of an era has come upon us…thank you to all for the wonderful memories and support over the years.” No relocation plans have been announced.

Kazimierz World Wine Bar
Kazimierz World Wine Bar closed after 15 years of business. This sister restaurant/bar of Cowboy Ciao was in an unmarked building in Old Town Scottsdale. Kaz Bar featured an extensive wine list with more than 2,000 different wines from around the globe. A post from its official Facebook read "It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to Kazimierz today!"

Steak and Stone Gilbert
Steak & Stone has closed its Gilbert location. This restaurant offered diners a tabletop cook-it-yourself experience. The restaurant was once filled with the sizzling sounds of premium cuts of beef being grilled atop 500-degree stones. Ownership intends to change the concept, remodel and reopen in the near future.

click to enlarge Alas, downtown Phoenix is losing barbecue like this; Rhema Soul Cuisine announced it is closing Sunday, October 28. - JACOB TYLER DUNN
Alas, downtown Phoenix is losing barbecue like this; Rhema Soul Cuisine announced it is closing Sunday, October 28.
Jacob Tyler Dunn
Rhema Soul Cuisine
After a short run in downtown Phoenix following a move from Queen Creek, Rhema Soul Cuisine has closed shop. Rhema was best known for its  barbecue, decadent sides, and generous portions. Racks of ribs drizzled with sweet sauces, seven-cheese macaroni, and homemade chocolate cake were just some of the crowd favorites. Ownership attributed a plethora of building-related problems to this restaurant's untimely closure.

Sharky's Tacos & Tequila in Tempe
Sharky's Tacos & Tequila has closed its Tempe location. This Mexican restaurant has been serving food and drinks since May of 2016. The restaurant’s Mesa location remains open.

Ice Cream Sammies
After a two- and a half-year run, Ice Cream Sammies has closed shop. This downtown Chandler dessert spot was best known for serving house-made ice cream sandwiched between fresh-baked cookies. On hot summer nights, lines would often extend out the door. A lease dispute has caused its closure. Ownership is currently looking for a new location to reopen.

Gino’s East
After 18 months of business, Gino’s East has served its last slice. This Chicago-based pizzeria chain specialized in deep-dish pizzas slowly baked in seasoned cast iron pans.
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