Cafe Reviews

Second Story Liquor Bar in Scottsdale Struggles to Achieve Success

I'm a fan of nouvelle cuisine and never balk at paying premium prices for fine food. But while Second Story Liquor Bar offers both the teeny portions of fussy food and the prices one expects from a four-star restaurant, it does so without benefit of fine cuisine or distinction. Uneventful entrées and one-note sides can't be cloaked by the nearly endless gimmickry offered here.

Located on the corner of Third Avenue and Scottsdale Road, this glamorous culinary disappointment is the brainchild of restaurateur Tommy Plato, who also owns the downstairs Gelato Spot Caffe. Second Story's stunning décor features dark leather booths and a dramatic chandelier; its main dining room is flanked by an outdoor eating patio and built around a floor-level window that gazes into the downstairs cafe. Its billing as "the restaurant in the sky" -- it's located on the top floor of a two-story building -- is as outlandish as its menu.

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Robrt L. Pela has been a weekly contributor to Phoenix New Times since 1991, primarily as a cultural critic. His radio essays air on National Public Radio affiliate KJZZ's Morning Edition.
Contact: Robrt L. Pela