PHOENIX â€“ On the last day of our visit to Phoenix to soak up some Brewers Spring Training baseball, Andy Tarnoff and I spotted a Taco Bell across the street from a beloved local Mexican food chain. We wondered who chooses Taco Bell over Filiberto's.
It's no surprise that Phoenix does Mexican food well. In reality, it should come as no surprise that Phoenix does lots of cuisines well. It's a big tourism destination, a cosmopolitan metro area and one that has a lot of money fueling its local nightlife and dining economy.
For our desert swan song, we rolled from our hotel a long way East along Camelback Road to hit The Phoenician, a swanky golf resort at the foot of a big hill out in Scottsdale, where folks know how to enjoy themselves.
The burgers were as large and as satisfying as promised, but the dining experience wasn't exactly what I expected. I'd heard there were breathtaking views of the golf course here and expected something a bit high-minded.
It was with great relief, then that I found that the Relish Burger Bistro at The Phoenician is a family place, with kids of all ages at darn near every table. Casual, but, make no mistake, this is not Red Robin.
There are no balloons. There is, however, a roaring fire in the fireplace and there's sports on the half-dozen TV screens in the dimly lit dining room.
Relish is a place for adults that also welcomes kids. So, if the whole family has hit Phoenix with Brewers fever, Relish is a great option. Because not only are kids welcome, parents and tots will love the straight-up American burger joint approach.
The menu has a few entrees, but focuses mainly on the burger. There are some suggested combinations on the menu, but the create your own burger for $16 is unbeatable. Choose your cheese, bacon or not, onions or not, etc. and your kobe burger will really satisfy. It comes with a side of devilishly crunchy tater tots.
I also tried the beer and cheese soup, which is hearty and packs a bit of spice on the finish. Despite the Arizona heat, I recommend it.
If you're not driving, there are more than 70 beers from which to choose and one of the area's largest assortments of tequila.
Lunch is served daily from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. and dinner is Sunday-Wednesday 5-8:30 p.m., Thursday-Saturday, 5 p.m. until 9:30. There's a daily happy hour from 3:30 until 6 with noshes like kobe beef sliders, fried pickles, queso fundido and more.
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