Archive for the ‘Foodies’ Category

Yesterday’s Lunch

Yesterday, my department at work had a lunch meeting at one of our favorite places, Pugzies Restaurant. It is located at Highland and 16th street and really easy to get to from the 51. I had a Greek salad yesterday, but I frequently get their turkey sandwich and chicken noodle soup. I was introduced to the place only a few months ago, and it continues to impress.

They seem to have an emphasis on good food fast, a reasonable price point- I spend between $8-$14 on lunch there, and a lot of room. I have never tried the drive through.

Just a couple of minor negatives. The bathrooms are outside and a bit of a walk to get to. The ordering system, while expertly managed, creates congestion and confusion around the registers. Other than those things and a weirdly striped parking lot, I have to recommend it for anyone looking for a good place for a business lunch or to meet a friend near downtown.

From their website:

Pugzie’s was established and opened for business on Sept. 23, 1981.
Two sisters, Lynn Pugliano and Lisa Pugliano-Wright, with the help of their parents, converted a service station owned by their father into the original sandwich shop. The restaurant was named “Pugzie’s” as a shortened version of their last name. The toucan bird was selected as a logo of their tropical garden atmosphere. Their goal was to provide fresh, healthy lunches with friendly, fast service.
After 13 years of continued growth and 3 expansions on the original building, there was no room left to expand. A 12,000 sq. ft. office complex adjacent to their property was purchased and 6,000 sq. ft. was remodeled into a new restaurant with inside seating for 282 people. They also added a drive-up window for phone and fax orders and a beautiful courtyard for outdoor eating. The original restaurant was torn down and converted to customer parking for the new building.
Lynn and Lisa, along with Lisa’s daughter Gina and several original employees, recently celebrated their 26th year in business.

Spinach, Lettuce, What else?

I eat missing bags of spinach. I haven’t heard if it was safe to eat spinach or lettuce. I usually hear the bad coming out from the news, but they never (or I haven’t heard) let you know when it’s safe to go back to those things. For those of you that live in the Phoenix area, here is a great website to find your local farmers market.

New Contest

State Fair opens tonight. Time for a contest. First one with a photo and review of Deep Fried Coke, wins.

Deep Fried Coca-cola report from WFTV (Dallas). Should that not be WTFTV?

Eat at Joe’s


The photo from my camera phone does not do the pizza justice. We tried Joe’s Farm Grill over in Gilbert for lunch today. I had the veggie pizza which was almost wonderful. A little too cheesy (yes, something can be too cheesy) for my taste, but topped with some very nice grilled veggies and greens. Presh had the BBQ Pork sandy (ala Joe’s other place) and we shared what was just about the best onion rings I have had in years. The grill is open for lunch and dinner and should do well here. I need to try the portabello mushroom burger next (Joe’s fave). The burgers look fancy and reports are that they are tasty in a “Fuddruckers” sort of way. Joe was on hand to greet folks. I meant to ask him where his old room was.

Whew and then some

caffeine.gifI developed an idea about what’s behind much of the crazy ass driving that goes on around the Valley. Every day I drink one large cup of coffee, brewed either by Einstein Bros or the MU at ASU. My selection comes not from the orange handled pot and liberal quantities of half and half are applied. This daily routine did not prepare me for Starbucks, where I met a friend for a cuppa this past Sunday. When I ordered, I could only get a mix of house blend and their anniversary “bold”. I told him to make the mix and leave room for milk. Well, let me tell you, I spent the rest of the day like a dragster on the line, revved to go. My insides quaked and shook and my attention span lasted between slim and none. My mother called in the late afternoon and I nearly took her head off for reasons I still don’t understand. Impatience ruled during that conversation. Still humming at 10:30 pm, I finally went to sleep around midnight; however, I woke up at 2:15 am, never to return to the land of nod.

Ugly describes those 24 hours. Considering that coffee is swilled by the gallon, along with so-called energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster (caffeine cloaked in vitamins), no wonder people are horrible drivers. Put my phone call impatience behind the wheel and you have cause for some of the uncivilized, unintelligent driving that occurs on our local roads.

As for me and Starbucks? Next time, orange handles, please and lots of room for milk.

White baggin’ it!

Quizno’s, it’s not bad for a chain, better than subway or blimpie. Dilly’s, like their paninis. Cheba Hut, pretty darn good. Sacks Sandwiches, out of this world! It’s on University and Hardy in the same plaza as Sabuddy and Cafe Lalibela, and if you’ve never been there I urge you to stop in and get yourself a Tom (yours truly) original. Turkey on marble rye, toasted, havarti cheese, easy mayonnaise, lots of lettuce, and cranberry sauce. Yes, cranberry sauce. Oh so yummy. They have quite a few original sandwiches and a large menu of options if you’d like to make your own “self portrait” as they call it. They have at least 4 flavors of iced tea in constant rotation, including a hawaiian red tea that is delicious (have only seen this @ the Phoenix location). To top it off, every sandwich order comes with a yummy chocolate chip cookie that’s made from their own cookie dough that you can also purchase. It’s a nice finishing touch.

Sammiches . . . (ah, yes)

I love Cheba Hut for good toasted subs. They are situated on the northeast corner of University and Hardy and also have a location on either Dobson or Southern, somewhere near Mesa Community College. I crave their sandwiches and am most thankful I don’t live nearby. When my sister and brother-in-law come to visit from Ohio, they like to stop by Cheba Hut on the way from the airport. My other favorite, and way too convenient, is the Port of Subs on College Ave, next to the Fulton Center at College and University. They have nice portions, especially the 5″ sub, perfectly sized for the leaner appetite.

Mmmm Sammiches!

I’ll admit – I really love a good sandwich. I was so excited Sunday when I saw that the Quiznos that lives at Mill & Southern was open again! Now I can have toasty sub’s within walking distance!

Of course Quiznos isn’t the only place in Tempe to get a good sammich. Dilly’s Deli (414 W. University Drive) and Bison Witches (21 E. 6th Street #146 aka ASU Brick Yard) also know how to make a mean sandwich. Yum!

Where’s your favorite place for a good sandwich?

How about a tomato fight?

tomato.jpgA bit off track here, but bear with me. This morning on Headline News I heard, out of the corner of my ear, a comment about a town food fight in Spain – a tomato fight to be specific. A quick Google verified that my ear correctly caught the snippet and I now bring this valuable information to the blog. Every August in Bunol, Spain, there is a festival that begins with a ham on top of a pole. Climbers vie to capture the ham and, once done, truckloads of tomatoes are dumped on the town streets and a tomato fight begins. I don’t undertand the ham-tomato connection, but it’s their tradition and who am I to interfere?

tomatina.jpgI found several websites, one with a photo gallery that showed a sea of red juice – simply amazing. So how does this relate to Phoenix, you wonder? As I looked at the red, chunky liquid produced from the fight, I could only think of salsa – a primary foodstuff in the great Southwest. If we were to add peppers, onion, cilantro and any other requisite ingredients to the fight, it seems Phoenix could host a tomato fight and create a seriously large bowl of salsa.

We need a category for creative thinking.

Hodori (Korean Restaurant) – Tempe

Hodori has the best Korean food in the Valley and challenges some of the best (Woo Lae Oak) I have had, period. Located on Dobson (behind the Oregano’s) it is not for the Pei Wei crowd. This is real, no compromises, Korean food and it is good. Last night, we had the Bi Bim Bap, which came with the rice off to the side. I guess I was supposed to mix the rice in, but decided to leave it out and have it as a salad. Brilliant, on a hot summer evening. The rest of the meal was as stellar. Do not go here for the atmosphere or service. But if you understand and appreciate Korean food, this place is for you.

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