The Spot: The Rogue Tomato
18561 North 59th Avenue, #122, Glendale
The Hours: Happy hour runs every day from 4 to 6 p.m. and until close on Mondays. A reverse happy hour on Fridays goes from 8 p.m. until close.
Perfect for: Small snacks and refreshing cocktails in a big, quiet bar setting.
The Interior: The Rogue Tomato is a gastropub in a strip mall in Glendale, with dark leather and exposed brick. There's also a big chalkboard wall with peppy sayings scrawled on it including, "Your body is not a temple, it's an amusement park. Enjoy the ride!"
The Food: You're offered six appetizers at The Rogue Tomato, including standard pub fare ranging from a pretzel plate ($6.95) to the Sonoran quesadilla ($7.95), which comes with grilled chicken, muenster and cheddar cheeses, and peppers.
We tried the rogue fries ($4.95) — thin fries tossed in chili oil and herbs with a side of aioli dipping sauce. The fries were crispy, but we didn't detect any chili oil heat, making them taste very run of the mill. The aioli dipping sauce tasted like mayo with just a hint of chipotle flavor. All in all, the fries needed something more to elevate them beyond basic french fries.
The Drink: The Rogue Tomato's happy hour offers a lot, drink-wise, including $2 off craft beer, cask wine, and cocktails, plus $1 off bottled beer. Craft beer offered on tap is from Mudshark, Odell, North Coast, and more, and will run you about $3.99. Cask wine includes both red and white options.
All of the craft cocktails on The Rogue Tomato's menu sound interesting, but the price tag — $8.95 during happy hour, $10.95 normally — felt steep for a drink at a place not billed as a cocktail spot (though, to be fair, the price isn't completely out of line based on other cocktail prices around metro Phoenix). We ordered the "Feelin' Cheeky," made with Rutte Old Simon gin, lavender syrup, lime juice, sparkling lemonade, and slices of cucumber. We liked that the cocktail was made with a liberal amount of cucumber, but there was too much lavender syrup and not enough sparkling lemonade, creating a drink that felt a bit sticky. We also watched our cocktail sit at the bar for five minutes before it was brought out to us, even though the restaurant was pretty empty.
Conclusion: The Rogue Tomato's happy hour was underwhelming. The cocktail and the fries didn't stand out as anything special, even though both items were pricier than at other happy hours. We wouldn't refuse to go again, but we also wouldn't go out of our way.
Don't Miss: Reading kitschy sayings like, "Everything you see I owe to spaghetti" off the chalkboard wall.
Skip This: The cocktails. You're better off saving money by ordering beer or wine.
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