Next time you visit AAR’s midtown Phoenix office for a class or committee meeting, be sure to reward yourself with a stop at one of these delicious, locally owned restaurants.
America’s Taco Shop
Eat: carne asada burritos and al pastor tacos. Drink: horchata, jamaica and Mexican Coke in a bottle. Enough said.
You’ll have to Yelp ‘em yourself.
We couldn’t help but notice a trend in Director of Business Services Nick Catanesi‘s list of favorite lunch spots. This guy likes a good burger. His picks: Two Hippies, Lenny’s Burger Shop, Original Hamburger Works and Lucky Boy Burger Shop.
Cherry Blossom Noodle Café
Art Director J Thurston has a soft spot for this noodle slurping spot. A little basket of homemade quick breads and a salad get your lunch off to a good start.
Just across the street from AAR, China Chili gets you in and out in a hurry. Staff favorites include orange chicken and Mongolian beef. They’ll add veggies or sub in brown rice, if you prefer.
A favorite of Ron LaMee, vice president – information services, this café in a historic home is a little pricey for lunch ($10+ for salad or sandwich), but the food is fresh, tasty and well-presented. It’s a classy but informal place to take someone for a good impression.
Enter through the kitchen to access this old-school Phoenix haunt that never disappoints. And it comes recommended by a name you trust: AAR General Counsel and Assistant CEO Michelle Lind.
The burgers are stellar, and the sweet potato fries will knock your socks off. “Totally yummy!” says Niki Burridge, business applications specialist.
The Fry Bread House
This Tohono O’odham-owned shop serves up fry bread folded like a taco and stuffed with red or green chili beef. For dessert, get one topped with chocolate and butter. Warning: Two fry breads in one meal is a little much. Trust me. I’ve done it.
The $2 tacos are so good—plan at least three to make a meal of it. A plus: The historic Clarendon Hotel is a pretty swank place to dine. And the pool’s open to all comers.
LoLo’s Chicken & Waffles
Fried chicken. Waffles. If that doesn’t sell you right there, you were raised wrong. Add a side of collard greens, smothered potatoes or fried okra if you’ve got no other plans for the afternoon but a nap. Be sure to pick up Monica Schulik, executive assistant to CEO Tom Farley, before you head over.
If you can’t stomach the sometimes three-hour dinner wait at Pizzeria Bianco, get the next best thing at the lunch-only sandwich spot. There’s no indoor seating and few menu choices, but they can get away with just about anything when the food’s this good.
Park Central Deli
Formerly called Miracle Mile, this deli delivers hefty sandwiches to the lunchtime crowd. Lore Brown, administrative assistant – government affairs, chooses the pastrami with Swiss. “Oh boy, is it good!”
This outpost of the popular Arcadia spot has delicious salads, kickin’ bruschetta and a beautiful patio.
If you wanna fancy it up, the business lunch promises you three courses in 30 minutes—for a wallet-busting $18. You’re paying for the scene and scenery.
“Very mellow, relaxed atmosphere, delicious food and great service!” says Sam Takach, professional development assistant. She was seconded by boss Barb Freestone, senior vice president – professional and business development.
That’s 15+ options for your dining pleasure, but we’re sure to have missed your personal favorite. Is it Duck & Decanter? Thai Hut? Blue Fin? Tell us all about it in the comments below.