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Comment Archives: stories: Special Issues

Re: “Evolution of eegee's

Many thanks to Ed & Bob. I started eating eegee's in the early 1970s when the food truck stopped by my high school (Catalina) in the afternoons. Soon we found their 'shack' on the north side of Speedway, east of Tucson Blvd. The 'shack' turned into a bigger store & soon I happily found many eegee's all over Tucson. The 'shack' store has since moved across Speedway, to the corner at Tucson Blvd.
We have had many family events where eegee's was present, including a baby shower, & that baby is now 26 years of age. I moved away from Tucson about 30 years ago & often wish an eegee's store was in Washington State. Whenever I come back to Tucson, I always head to eegee's directly from the airport. Recently I spent a month in Tucson & probably had eegee's food and/or drink 25 of 30 days. Not too much for me. My favorites are still what I used to get back in the 70s; a lemon or strawberry eegee, a couple hot pretzels with cheese, & an original
I haven't noticed too many changes in the products, which is a good thing. One exception I noticed last month was the original grinder has a different slice of meat, I think it is ham, & chopped up peppers instead of whole peppers, which was a little disapointing to this 'old timer'. I used to bite the pepper & dump all the pepper juice onto the sandwich. Now the amount of peppers you get is not consistent, & I really didn't like biting into peppers stems. Hey, after nearly 45 years of eating these yummy treats, you notice these things. Needless to say, eegee's is my number one favorite restaurant of its kind. Again, many, many thanks to Ed and Bob.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Margie R. on 09/05/2017 at 11:58 AM

Re: “Evolution of eegee's

New mini location samurai sams by metro center mall in Phoenix. Loovvveee me some eegee's!
Watermelon pineapple splash -hands down the most amazing flavorful fantastic flavor of the month EVER!!

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Cody Leon on 06/02/2017 at 6:17 PM

Re: “Evolution of eegee's

Does eegees have any food dyes added?

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Lyndi on 10/17/2016 at 4:02 PM

Re: “Let's Get Cooking

Any chinese wok cooking classes available?

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Bob on 07/25/2016 at 3:41 PM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

New Crying Onion on Orange Agrove just East of Thornydale, very good food!

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by DAGS on 06/24/2016 at 7:29 PM

Re: “The Birth of Tucson Cuisine

Yes, I am writing 10 years after the fact. And I only recently happened upon this article when trying to remember Boccata's name. My husband (John Richards) had designed the restaurant that inhabited the space previous in that location (as well as completed design work in many back and front of the houses in many of the restaurants named in this article). Well, I was excited to read an article named "The Birth of Tucson Restaurants" as I have worked, managed and owned in the biz there since the late 1970s.

I am glad to introduce myself here: I am Deborah (Gellman) Richards. My first food service job in Tucson was scooping ice cream at Eric's Ice Cream (1977-79). From there I moved to The Blue Willow (1979-80), working with both Tess O'Shea and Marianne Banes (who dated my cousin Bruce Bracker, former sous chef for Claude at Le Rendezvous and Janos as well).

Next up I managed and became a minority owner at The Eclectic Cafe (1980-1982) before rebuilding the neighborhood market at Frank's Restaurant (1982-present), which was and is still an iconic breakfast diner. I did this, partnering with Mark Smith (The Eclectic Cafe, Renee's Organic Oven). In 2002, we added Francisco's Michoacan style dinner service.

In 1986, Tess O'Shea (Barrio, FioRito's) and I started Presidio Grill, opening for business on 15 April 1987. Our first chef was Catherine Matthis (Blue Willow) and over the course of our 13 year tenure, we employed many foodie restaurant workers that worked at or created establishments named in this article. To this day I still receive requests for Presidio Grill recipes as well as accolades and the sharing of fond memories.

Presidio Grill was an amazing place, drawing from lots of talented people, becoming the first of its kind in Tucson, copied, envied and competed with by many later places. Sadly, in 2000 chronic illness forced to leave the business and later Tucson altogether.

As for The Tucson Originals, I was co-founder and at the first meeting at El Parador with Alan Zeman and Don Luria. We three had been called together with my husband's friend at the time, City Councilman Steve Leal.

Love Tucson. Love the food scene. Love the Weekly. AND Presidio Grill was a force in Tucson's restaurant history that I know some still remembered.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Deb Richards on 03/22/2016 at 3:14 PM

Re: “Made Here

Just starting out.
New product made here in Tucson from all American materials.
only sell online. trying to find advertising

Posted by safetyproofyourlife on 12/26/2015 at 9:54 AM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

cahi61 do you have that link to the Crying Onion?

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Rita Connelly on 07/22/2015 at 2:36 PM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

wow Trivia fun - thanks for all the info. It will come in handy for my new book called 'The Lost Restaurants of Tucson' soon to be published by The History Press. In the book both Pago Pago and Aku Aku are mentioned. Dean Short died about a month ago. I believe the 2200 Club was that building at onetime but the dates are a little fuzzy in my research.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Rita Connelly on 07/22/2015 at 2:33 PM

Re: “Evolution of eegee's

I agree a need for expansion ... I love San Antonio, Texas but I miss eegees in Tucson, Arizona . Any chance of expanding this way ?

5 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Connie on 07/02/2015 at 11:05 PM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

Do you know what happened to the 2200 Club and/or the building after 1983? So far the trail has run cold on that, so I'd be curious to know.
(By the way, there is a fun ad in the Tucson Daily Citizen Dec. 16, 1966, with a map of the Miracle Mile area listing popular restaurants, etc.: it's worth checking out for research reference, or just for Trivia Fun!)

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by TriviaFun on 06/29/2015 at 1:22 PM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

As to the closing date of Ports O'Call: the owner, Dean C. Short, sold it in 1980 to one James R. Riley and Bali Hai Associates. It was renamed Bali Hai, and it operated at a loss until 1981. A subsequent legal dispute over the sale led to Short regaining ownership, and in 1983 her reopened it as the 2200 Club
(you can read about the interesting case at, Short v. Riley, No. 2 CA-CIV 5536). I can't find anything after that on the 2200 Club, so I assume its operation was short-lived.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by TriviaFun on 06/29/2015 at 1:15 PM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

Thanks for the correction on the address of Pago Pago, Ports O Call, and Aku Aku! I knew there had been a change over the years, but didn't know the details, and then with the fire information I thought that definitely made it a different location. Thanks for clearing that up, great article got me into doing some research :) When I worked on a survey for downtown I wasn't aware of the change on Congress years ago when the center of town changed. Odds and evens were opposite from what they were later, gave me a heck of a problem for awhile. Appreciate the history!

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by cath61 on 06/29/2015 at 12:40 PM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

Actually, correction to prior correction (posted by cath61): 2201 N. Miracle Mile and 2201 N. Oracle Road (both N., not W. back then) were the same address: in October 1960 segments of Drachman St., Oracle Road, and Casa Grande Highway were officially renamed the "Mircle Mile Strip"; so, 2201 Oracle Road officially became 2201 Miracle Mile in Nov. 1960. Many people and businesses were slow to adopt the address change (and some never did). This is why you can find newspaper ads from the 1940s to 1960s with both 2201 Oracle and 2201 Miracle Mile listed as the address for Pago-Pago (opened 26 Nov. 1947), which became Aku-Aku in 1966, and which finally reopened as Port's O Call in Nov. 1967 after the April 28, 1967, fire (source for all: Tucson Daily Citizen, 1947-1977).

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by TriviaFun on 06/29/2015 at 12:08 PM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

Ooh, another thing! Probably more than you need/want to the 10/13/1973 Tucson Daily Citizen, there is a great article about the history of the Crying Onion and the neat old papers that went back to the late 1800's that were on some old interior walls that were uncovered in some remodeling. The owner in the 70's kept the memorabilia up for folks to read. Another article from 1960 had the owner fighting to keep the address, 3936 E. Ft. Lowell, in a business zone as she had had the restaurant since 1940! I couldn't find any older articles, but the restaurant was in her family's old farmhouse! Neat!

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by cath61 on 06/22/2015 at 10:05 AM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

Great article! One change - Ports O' Call which was operating at least in 4/1967, was at 2201 W. Miracle Mile. Aku Aku was actually at 2201 N. Oracle Road. Easy to mix up, same time frame in the 60's until 4/28/1967 when Aku Aku had a huge fire that destroyed the building. It doesn't appear that they ever reopened. Ports O' Call did serve a "flaming Aku Aku volcano" that sounds really cool! Thanks for the cool article, if I find any other info I'll pass it on, love to look up the old stuff!

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by cath61 on 06/22/2015 at 9:47 AM

Re: “Evolution of eegee's

I cut the hole in the side of the first truck and installed the vending window in it back in 1971!

8 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Jeff Dahn on 06/05/2015 at 4:42 AM

Re: “Italian Style

i miss Corleone's and Da Vinci's. The owner of Corleone's was a piece of work but It just added to the flavor. And there were a lot of great flavored from those places. You don't get family cooking from #%^*ing Olive Garden or the Sleazefake Factory.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by WildcatTradition on 05/09/2015 at 8:29 PM

Re: “Italian Style

I worked at Vinces in the early 90s. I was a host, and it was a fun job. Mr. Vince was a HUGE guy, but he always had a laugh ready. When he died, it felt like losing family!

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by AK Benjamin on 01/31/2015 at 11:11 AM

Re: “Retro Restaurants

East Speedway had Paulos, Vitos and Von's which were 50's & 60's Continental Style. The Jet Set hung out at The Barrons on South Wilmot in the early 70's. Wongs on 22nd was great for Chinese for quite a few years. OK Coral had some great steaks. I loved the Green Goddess at Sneaky Petes back in the late 60's.
When "The Bistro" opened on Broadway near Kolb, it was the most expensive restaurant in Tucson. Last but not least were the two Johnie's on Speedway. I loved those burgers and the crinkle fries. YUMMY delish!

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Mike on 10/13/2014 at 6:10 PM

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