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15 Best Restaurants in Scottsdale Arizona

15 Best Restaurants in Scottsdale Arizona

Scottsdale is a luxury destination known for its resorts, golf courses, and spas. So, it’s no surprise that the culinary scene has garnered rave reviews as well as award-winning restaurants over the years. On my last visit, I was on the hunt for some of the best restaurants in Scottsdale! 

Scottsdale may not be very big, but it’s got more than enough restaurants to compete with the biggest cities around. The culinary scene here is expert, varied, and absolutely delicious no matter what kind of food you’re in the mood for. 

Whether you’re looking for a casual gastropub, elegant bistro, or a simple grab-and-go café, it’s easy to find exactly what you want and leave with a full belly, already wanting to return. Here are the best restaurants in Scottsdale where you can count on a great dining experience.

ZuZu Scottsdale restaurant Hotel Valley Ho

1. ZuZu

I could have easily eaten every meal at Zuzu! It is hard to pick the best restaurant in Scottsdale, but if I had to pick one, it would be Zuzu. 

If you’re looking for a low-key café-style meal, look no further than the ZuZu café. Located inside the Hotel Valley Ho (where we stayed) in the heart of Scottsdale, this is a bohemian, retro-chic eatery with an extensive, surprisingly gourmet menu. 

Their cuisine focuses on comfort food that uses seasonal, locally-available ingredients and rotates throughout the year to reflect this. This is a great spot for a late-night bite, as their kitchen is open and cooking until late every day. Everything sounded so good on the menu; we had a hard time picking what to get, so we decided to split a few small plates. Whatever you do, make sure to get the Brussels sprouts!

If you’re wondering what to order, you can’t go wrong with the fried chicken Bahn mi sliders and truffle parmesan fries. Or, pop by for their brunch menu and try the buttermilk pancakes with one of their Show-Stopper milkshakes, a house specialty.

Culinary Dropout charcuterie board Scottsdale

2. Culinary Dropout

The classic bar food you’d expect but taken to a new level. Culinary Dropout is a family-friendly bar serving traditional bar fare with an elevated spin. 

There are two locations, one in North Quarter Scottsdale and another in the Old Town. Both menus are very similar, but if you want Detroit-style pizza, then be sure to visit the Quarter location.

Other hit items on their menu include their classic fried chicken, 36-hour ribs, and shared snacks like their pretzel bites in provolone fondue. There is also a kids’ menu and an extensive drinks menu for wine, beer, and cocktails. 

Not only is the food sure to satisfy but be sure to stay for games and live music. And don’t miss happy hour, Monday through Friday, 3-6 pm. It’s best to make reservations here in advance. You can make them online easily, that is what we did a few hours in advance.

Hula's Tiki Scottsdale

3. HULA’S Modern Tiki Scottsdale

The classic tiki bar gets a modern makeover at HULA’s. Located in the heart of Scottsdale’s Old Town, HULA’s is a laid-back, upbeat restaurant that brings the tiki bars of the 50s and 60s into the modern age. 

The menu focuses on tropical-style food to make you feel like you’ve been transported to an island in the South Pacific. Fried plantains, spicy Thai chicken, and coconut shrimp are among some of the most popular dishes. You can’t go wrong with their famous Loco Moco, which is what I had and is pictured above.

True to island-style, they also have a great cocktail list with lots of options, and many diners recommend the blood orange martini. Or, if you’re in a group of 2-4, try their Scorpion Bowl.

If you want to get an early start, come for their brunch. Ahi tuna eggs Benedict, thick-cut French toast, or the “Hangover Hash,” a pork hash over hashbrowns with eggs.

Hash Kitchen Scottsdale

4. Hash Kitchen

Hash Kitchen is just the thing you need in the morning. This is a brunch-only restaurant and closes at 2 pm, so get here early. It’s the perfect place to eat a big breakfast before exploring and checking out all the best things to do in Scottsdale.

Their menu is creative and original, and there are lots of choices. Choose a sweet breakfast like the banana split brioche, fluffy buttermilk pancakes, or coconut and almond encrusted French toast. Or, choose from their frittatas, egg scrambles, or hash dishes for something flavorful and savory.

And save room for a beverage because you won’t want to miss their claim to fame: the original build-your-own Bloody Mary bar. Choose from homemade infused vodkas and tons of toppings, and sip away!

Barrio Queen Scottsdale Guacamole

5. Barrio Queen

If one thing is always a good idea, it’s tacos. And luckily for you, Barrio Queen restaurant in Scottsdale serves up authentic, family-recipe tacos and other Mexican dishes to satisfy your taco craving.

The restaurant’s focus is on fresh, authentic cuisine that uses all the amazing flavors of Mexico. This is just one reason that their tortillas are made fresh in-house every single day, so you know you’re in for a great meal. 

But they’ve got more than just tacos. Choose from fresh ceviche, enchiladas, burritos, and more. Don’t forget to try their nationally recognized guacamole, prepared fresh-to-order, right beside your table. They also have a kids’ menu, handcrafted margaritas, and a happy hour drinks menu from 3-5 pm during the week.

Sugar Bowl Ice Cream Scottsdale

6. Sugar Bowl

Sugar Bowl is a Scottsdale icon and has been scooping since 1958. They have quite a following of locals, so you know it’s got to be good. Their menu, decor, and location have stayed the same since the beginning, so you’re getting an authentic 60s diner experience. It’s even on the Scottsdale Historic Preservation Register!

They do sandwiches and salads, but the real claim to fame is their traditional milkshakes and ice cream. Try the root beer float with homemade vanilla ice cream, the brownie sundae, or the banana split. All will leave you well-fed, as the portions are generous.

Their flavors rotate, but they always have a big selection to choose from, so no matter what you like, you can find it here! This is definitely the kind of place where “what’s your favorite flavor of ice cream” would be a hard question to answer.

Craft 64 pizza Scottsdale

7. Craft 64

There’s no combo like pizza and beer. Craft 64 is a great restaurant in Scottsdale with a chilled-out atmosphere and fresh pizzas made in traditional wood-fired ovens. They keep over 30 local beer varieties on tap and source all their ingredients locally, including meat.

There aren’t a lot of pizza restaurants that can say they make their own mozzarella fresh daily, but Craft 64 is one of them. Try their mozza sticks to experience it for yourself! Maybe during their happy hour, which runs from 3-7 pm every day with specials on drinks and food.

If you’re looking for a laid-back patio vibe with the best food combo there is, Craft 64 is the place for you.

Rehab Therapy Burger Scottsdale

8. Rehab Burger Therapy

It’s hard to say no to a burger, but Rehab Burger Therapy takes it to another level. With an extensive menu of some very inventive burgers, you definitely won’t go hungry. In fact, you’ll want to come back to this beach-themed hotspot to try something else.

Blue cheeseburgers, Philly cheesesteak burgers, and even peanut butter & jelly burgers are just some of the wild creations on the menu — all of which are highly recommended (yes, even the PB&J!). But don’t get too full on your burger, and be sure to try the sweet potato tater tots. 

If you’re in the mood for something else, they also make pasta, refreshing sandwiches, wings, and small bites. They also have a big selection of beers, cocktails, and tequila, and a very generous happy hour every day from 11 am to 6 pm.

Berdena's Coffee Shop Scottsdale

9. Berdena’s

Berdena’s is another daytime spot. They close at 3 pm, so they are best suited to breakfast, brunch, and lunch. It’s a small, cozy coffee shop tucked away from the main roads but definitely a hidden gem of Scottsdale.

They serve small bites like avocado toast and breakfast sandwiches on savory brioche buns and lots of freshly baked pastries. They have classic coffees like drip, cappuccinos, and lattes. But, don’t miss out on their specialties: the lavender latte, the cardamom rose latte, and the espresso tonic.

Berdena’s also has a wide selection of black, green, oolong, and rooibos teas for anyone wanting something more soothing. 

Francine Scottsdale Dining Room

10. Francine Restaurant

An upscale bistro located inside the luxury wing of an indoor fashion mall sure sounds elegant. Francine Restaurant is a newly opened restaurant serving fresh French cuisine with a Mediterranean twist and has quickly become one of the best restaurants in Scottsdale.

Try some of the most famous dishes from the south of France that you’ve always wanted to try, like bouillabaisse, salade Niçoise, and carpaccio. The moules frites (fried mussels) are also one of their most popular dishes. Grab a glass of red wine imported from some of the best regions in France.

Make sure to save room for dessert (chocolate cake, cream pots, strawberry pannacotta, or apple tart). Or, stop by for brunch for a great selection of both sweet and savory dishes, all with a French-Mediterranean influence. 

It’s best to make reservations here in advance. You can make them online easily, that is what we did a few days before. 

Brat Haus Scottsdale

11. Brat Haus

Everyone loves a beer garden, and now you can visit one without having to fly to Bavaria. Brat Haus is a bratwurst house and microbrewery with an outdoor beer garden patio (it’s dog-friendly!) and 28 craft beers on tap. It’s the perfect spot to visit with friends.

Order a traditional Bavarian giant pretzel, bratwurst sausage with sauerkraut, and an ice-cold beer for the perfect German-inspired meal. You can even order a plant-based bratwurst (look for Beyond Brat on their menu) if you are vegan or vegetarian!

Other popular choices on their menu are the Belgian fries, fried pickles, and sauerkraut balls. Plus, if you’re not a beer person, no problem: they have fruity and refreshing handcrafted cocktails available, too.

Tacos at Diego Pops in Scottsdale

12. Diego Pops

Who doesn’t love tacos? On my first day in Scottsdale, I headed over to Diego Pops for a small bite to eat as I had dinner reservations. They are known for their twist on tacos and authentic Mexican dishes. 

Some of the unique things on their menu include brussel sprout nachos, grilled plantain tacos, brussels sprout tacos, and the grilled street corn that has a flamin’ hot Cheeto dust! I was pretty basic and ordered an Al Pastor & grilled adobo chicken taco, both hit the spot and I washed it down with a margarita. 

If you don’t go for the food, go for the drinks! But trust me, go for the food, and come hungry so you can try a few things. 

Every Monday is Taco Monday with $3 tacos open to close, and they also have a really good happy house 7 days a week from 3-6 pm with half of the appetizers and $5 margaritas. 

Chop Salad at Citizen Public House Scottsdale

13. Citizen Public House

The name of the restaurant may make it sound like your average bar restaurant, but Citizen Public House is a cut above. It’s a laid-back place, to be sure, but it combines expert cuisine with a relaxed vibe that makes it an easy place to spend a few hours with family or friends.

Some of the most popular menu items include the seared scallops with bacon lardon, the pork belly pastrami, and the mushroom gravy meatloaf. They also have vegetarian dishes for those averse to meat. And, of course, you can’t miss their chopped salad (with smoked salmon, couscous, and asiago), which is so well-known it has its own Facebook page and has dozens of dupe recipes all over the Internet. 

There are plenty of drinks to choose from, too, whether you prefer a handcrafted cocktail made fresh at the bar, or a glass of draft beer. You’ll also find great deals on drinks for their social hour, 4-6 pm daily, including tasty small plates like duck liver pâté and bacon fat popcorn.

I highly recommend making reservations in advance. 

Fries & Wine at Kellys at Southbridge Scottsdale

14. Kelly’s at Southbridge

I almost didn’t go into Kelly’s at Southbridge due to all the Chicago Cubs & Chicago Bear memorabilia hanging outside. In case you didn’t know we are from Wisconsin….But I am glad I looked beyond the Chicago flags and went on inside.

Kelly’s is the perfect place for bar food, so if you’re looking for somewhere laid back and unpretentious, this is the spot. Bar food meets comfort food, and you’ll want to try it all once you see their menu.

Their starters have classics like truffle fries and cheese curds, which I obviously got both and they were delicious! But small plates like bruschetta and fresh salads are also available. If you’re sticking around for a full meal, their entrée menu is diverse: try the pan-roasted salmon or the Argentine ribeye.

Planning to dine in with kids? No problem, Kelly’s also has a kids’ menu, and most kids will love chicken strips, mac and cheese, or a simple cheeseburger. 

And of course, you can’t stop by without trying one of their 10 craft cocktails, all with different flavors and liqueurs to appeal to any taste.

Avocado Toast Kaleidoscope Juice Scottsdale

15. Kaleidoscope Juice 

Although Kaleidoscope Juice is now a local chain, the OG store still stands in Scottsdale’s Old Town. And their delicious, fresh fare has only gotten better with time.

On the Kaleidoscope menu, you can expect to find fresh-pressed juices, avocado toast, açai bowls topped with crunchy nuts and granola, and thick smoothies to help with health in the form of immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory ingredients. 

They also offer custom, build-your-own cleanses, where you can select 6 fresh-pressed juices in a combo that will help target mood, digestion, and more.

They also do classic café drinks with a healthy twist, like matcha lattes, iced protein coffee, and cold brew. You can sit down and stay awhile with their gluten-free protein waffles or their avocado smash.

What are your favorite restaurants in Scottsdale?

I am planning a return trip and would love to try out a few more new places, leave a comment below!