Best Pizza In Arcadia and Camelback Corridor

Let’s talk pizza – specifically let’s talk about the awesome pizza available in the Camelback Corridor and Arcadia.

Tommy V’s Osteria and Pizzeria has been a local icon for decades (yes, literally). Customers who know genuine Italian food rave about Tommy V’s, and they aren’t alone.

Tommy V’s is the sister restaurant to the upscale Tomaso’s (the restaurants are next to each other). While the atmosphere is more casual than Tomaso’s, the food, drinks, and service are on par with Tomaso’s. If you’ve never been to either of the restaurants, know that the service is outstanding!

Best Pizza Arcadia

Born in Italy, owner Chef Tomaso Maggiore makes frequent trips to Italy to maintain his “fresh approach to authentic Italian cuisine” (quote is from Tomaso’s website). For Tommy V’s, Chef Maggiore has poured his passion for fresh ingredients and superior flavors into a menu that offers a variety of affordable selections. The pizzas are cooked in a wood fired oven, and they taste incredible! Pizzas vary from the traditional (such as the Pizza Margherita) to the innovative – check out the Smoked Salmon pizza! Everything on the menu is great, so feel free to try any of them (or go often enough to try them all!). Let me know your favorite Tommy V’s menu item.

The Parlor Pizzeria has won numerous awards, including being awarded one of the best pizzas in the country (and the best in Arizona) by Food Network. From the moment you walk in the door, the atmosphere and decor lets you know this place is special.

One of the most talked about menu item is the “Duck Club” – people RAVE about it! As a vegetarian I can’t offer a personal opinion, but I would be doing you a disservice if I didn’t tell you about it.

On to the pizza, though. The Parlor’s pizzas are cooked in a brick oven, and one of the most popular pizzas is the “Salsiccia” (a.k.a. the pizza that won over the Food Network). But really, you can’t go wrong with any of the pizzas on the menu – they’re all great!

And I’m not done – stay tuned for part 2 of this blog and read more about my favorite pizza places in Arcadia and Camelback Corridor. If I haven’t mentioned your favorite pizzeria let me know.

What else is there to love about Arcadia and Camelback Corridor? I put together a video about it! Check it out here.

*Photo of pizza is from http://theparlor.us/camera.htm

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Camelback Corridor & Arcadia Restaurants Foodies Will Love – Part 2

Whether you are a self-proclaimed foodie, or you want to enjoy a phenomenal dining experience the following Arcadia and Camelback Corridor restaurants offer world-class dining.

Beckett’s Table. The owners of Beckett’s Table started the restaurant with a vision of offering “sophisticated comfort food” in an unpretentious atmosphere; a world class restaurant families and sophisticated foodies could enjoy equally. They have succeeded stupendously! (big word, I know) Beckett’s Table is led by co-owner and chef, Justin Beckett.

Coinciding with its name, the restaurant has a signature, black walnut community table which seats 18 (if you’re not into the community table idea, don’t worry – the rest of the seating options are not community style). Beckett’s is recognized both locally and nationally for its chef driven menu, extraordinary service, world class wine list, and for loyally supporting local farmers. I’m always impressed with the many ways Beckett’s supports the local community, such as the “Feed Your Dreams” contest, “which awarded a prize to the Phoenician with the most innovative idea combining science and food” (quote is from Beckett’s Table website).

Right from opening, Chef Beckett and Beckett’s Table have continuously won awards and high praise. In 2010, Phoenix Magazine named them “Best New Restaurant,” and Wine Spectator awarded Beckett’s the 2012 Award of Excellence (the list of awards goes on, click here to read more about their awards). The friendly atmosphere makes Beckett’s a great place for foodies to introduce loved ones (of all ages) to an incredible dining experience.

Bink’s Midtown. You may be familiar with Bink’s Café and Binkley’s Restaurant.  Don’t expect a duplicate version of the other establishments at the Midtown location – this restaurant stands on its own for outstanding food. While the restaurant is located on the fringes of Camelback Corridor, it can’t (shouldn’t!) be missed so I am sharing it here (you’re welcome).

Bink’s Midtown is the brain child of chef Kevin Binkley and his wife, Amy. Kevin is a James Beard Award nominee; he and his restaurants have received many (many!) awards.

“Binkley says Bink’s Midtown will highlight “what Arizona does best — produce,” mostly small plates.

But “this is not a farm-to-table” operation, points out general manager Amy Binkley, Kevin’s wife. “Kevin manipulates the ingredients.” (quoted from Arizona Republic restaurant critic, Howard Seftel, from an article on 3/14/13).

Another thing to love about Bink’s Midtown (in addition to the renowned chef and phenomenal dishes) is the price – Bink’s Midtown is very affordable (under $20 for most menu items).

P.S. I’m not the only one who thinks Bink’s Midtown is awesome – congrats to Bink’s Midtown for being named Best New Restaurant in the October 2013 issue of Phoenix Magazine.

As with Tarbell’s, if you haven’t been to either of the two Arcadia and Camelback Corridor restaurants listed in this blog – go now! Foodies in particular will appreciate the precision, care, and passion that goes into each and every plate by chefs Beckett and Binkley. Whether you’re a regular or first time visitor to the Camelback Corridor restaurants, let me know how you liked your experience.

Thinking of moving to Arcadia and Camelback Corridor? This video http://youtu.be/VNEcLh5pXR4 uncovers what makes these communities awesome.

Arcadia & Camelback Corridor Restaurant Foodies Will Love

Foodies, rejoice – there are some incredible restaurants in Arcadia and the Camelback Corridor area! I’ve highlighted one of my favorite restaurants here for your foodie enjoyment :).Tarbell’s. If you consider yourself a foodie, and you haven’t yet been to Tarbell’s please don’t wait any longer! You’re depriving yourself of an all-around incredible dining experience.Owner Mark Tarbell is a celebrity in his own right. He received international culinary training at world class culinary schools and restaurants. He is a James Beard award nominee, an Iron Chef, and columnist for the Arizona Republic (he writes a weekly wine column) among so many other awards and accolades it would take the entirety of this blog to catalog them all (yes, seriously). His television appearances range from “Good Morning America” to numerous Food Network programs, and he has cooked for a myriad of celebrities (including Muhammad Ali and the Dalai Lama). Throughout the years, more than 50 awards have been presented to Mark and his restaurants.

Tarbell’s is my kitchen away from my kitchen. Their front door says “welcome home” and the entire staff is so friendly and welcoming no one feels like a stranger when they’re there. In fact, you may be met at the door by Mark – he often greats guests as the come in and then checks back with them during the meal to ensure they’re having an excellent experience.

The interior of Tarbell’s is contemporary, modern, and comfortable. The menu has something for everyone (yes, I dine there often), and the ingredients are the highest quality available.

While Tarbell’s is ideal for a special occasion, experiencing the fantastic dining experience can be a special occasion in itself. Arcadia and Camelback Corridor residents can often be seen several nights a week at this neighborhood gem. Tarbell’s dishes are creative, organic, inspiring, and delicious. If you haven’t experienced the joy of eating at a restaurant so superb everything on the menu (literally) is a full sensory delight, prepare to be wowed at Tarbell’s. Tarbell’s is known for superior service, impeccable dining, and world class wine pairings.
If I were to attempt to sum my love for Tarbell’s it would be this: Local. Organic. Delicious!
Mark graciously sat down with me and talked about the best of Camelback Corridor – see that video here. Check back for more Arcadia & Camelback Corridor restaurants foodies will love – I’ll be writing more about them soon.
Want to know even more about why I love Camelback Corridor and Arcadia? Watch my video here.

Camelback Corridor and Arcadia Wine Bars

Arcadia has a plethora of wine bars! Friends are always asking me for Arcadia wine bar recommendations so I figured I would include some on here too. Whether looking for a cozy spot for date night or a fun atmosphere for girls night out, Arcadia & Camelback Corridor wine bars have something for everyone.

Probably one of the best known area wine bars is Postino WineCafé (most people just say “Postino’s”), but be careful when making plans to meet friends that you specify which location you’re meeting at (there are a few in the Valley). History buffs will appreciate knowing the Arcadia Postino is housed in the old Arcadia (1950s-era) Post Office. In patio weather garage doors swing up and double the socializing space (I was going to say the doors “let the outside in” but figured that sounded too much like a home decorating show). The atmosphere is vibrant, especially on weekends so this is a great place to meet friends and socialize with neighbors.

Sportsman’s Fine Wine & Spirits is not only a retail wine store, they also have a wine bar. If you’re wanting to try out new wines, you’ll like being able to do so at the wine bar. I’m always impressed with how knowledgeable the staff is. This is a great wine bar to try a sampling of wines paired with delectable food from their menu (consider letting the staff suggest pairings or simply “surprise you” – I’ve had great experiences doing both).

Those of you who know me may be surprised to find “Chick Rotisserie & Wine Bar” in this blog (I’m a vegetarian). While the food menu can be a bit meat-centric for those of us non-meat-eaters, I will admit they know a little something about vino and the wine selections tower (literally) impressively.

Central Bistro is modern with great outdoor seating. Their wine list is well done, and their food menu pairs wonderfully (they have French and Italian foods). The happy hour menu is fantastic – great food, and many are less than $5. They are known for having wonderful service. This is a great Camelback Corridor wine bar to enjoy wine before moving on to a more complete dinner there, or simply take advantage of their nice seating and enjoy conversation and drinks with friends. Their food and alcohol are farm-to-table, which I really enjoy and appreciate.

This is isn’t meant to be an all-inclusive list of Camelback Corridor wine bars – there are so many to enjoy! If you haven’t been to any of the above, add them to your “to try” list. What Arcadia wine bars are your favorites? Which are still on your “to try” list? Leave me a note – I love sharing Arcadia recommendations and receiving them!

Arcadia Brunch Places I Love

I love Sunday mornings, and Arcadia offers up so many possibilities for ways to spend the perfect Sunday morning.

I’ll preface this by saying my Sunday mornings are divided into two categories – those where I want to start the day active and those where I want to lounge around. For the active Sunday mornings starting the day with a yoga class or a hike are ideal.

This last Sunday was a morning for lounging so I found myself mentally searching through the Arcadia brunch options (don’t worry, in another blog we’ll talk all about great Arcadia yoga studios and hiking trails). There are many great Arcadia breakfast and brunch options, so let me share a few of my favorites with you.

Le Grande Orange (LGO) and Chelsea’s Kitchen are owned by the same company, and each offers different but equally yummy options. The outside mural of a lemon kissing an orange is constantly photographed, and inside you’ll find a fabulously funky grocery, café, and bakery. The ingredients are clean, simple, and often seasonal. I’ve tried many dishes on the menu, and still can’t pick just one favorite. If you eat gluten-free or vegan, there are delicious menu options for you too!

Chelsea’s Kitchen is just down the street from LGO and where LGO is always open for breakfast and is more of a casual “sit-where-you-will” atmosphere, Chelsea’s has a fantastic weekend brunch that is more of a sit down affair. Don’t confuse this with stuffy because the vibrant ambiance of Chelsea’s is anything but that. Friends rave that the French Dip is incredible, and the Eggs Benedict is served on an LGO-made English muffin. While the weather is still cool enough, take advantage of eating Sunday brunch on the patio.

Arcadia Farms is not to be missed, and certainly is a must for Sunday brunch! Charm exudes here, and Arcadia Farms is one of the most popular Arcadia dining experiences. In addition to the incredible food and atmosphere, I love that they support local vendors and farmers. Some menu items may be seasonal as a result, but you’ll always find the current menu full of mouth-watering breakfast options (if you’re not counting your calories, dive into the crepes!).

To find Carmel’s Breakfast House look for the vintage VW van stationed out front (yes, it is always there). I love the charm of Arcadia, and Carmel’s is housed in a cute, cozy 1940’s home. In addition to the wide variety of baked goods, the bread in all the meals is homemade (yum!). Part of the charm of Carmel’s on Sundays is that even if you don’t find yourself out and about until the afternoon, they serve breakfast all day. I was lucky enough to sit down with Pat, Carmel’s owner and talk about the best of Arcadia – watch the video here.

There are so many great Sunday brunch spots in Arcadia! These are just a few of my favorite Arcadia brunches – leave me a comment and share what your favorite brunch place is. In future blogs I’ll share more great Arcadia dining experiences, Camelback Corridor activities to burn off those brunches (hiking, anyone?), and much more!