Best Of Tucson®

The BOT Interview: Ray Carroll

Ray Carroll

Sometimes we call him Sugar Ray, because Ray Carroll has a certain fighting style that his District 4 constituents have liked ever since he was first appointed to the seat in 1997. However, many folks in Pima County government wish he'd just get along with the Democratic majority. It's not only Democrats he clashes with; Carroll is a Republican who sometimes doesn't even follow his own party. Carroll says he spends most of his workdays in his downtown Tucson office in the County Administration Building—and therefore spends a lot of time downtown.

Best place to go?

I have a favorite bar that I like to go to all the time called Barrio Brewing Co. It's a good example of a downtown redevelopment project that worked, despite the mayor and City Council. They have a tasting room in the back, and in the front, it's an industrial space that has a good feel to it.

How often do you go there? Should we be concerned?

(Laughs.) I go to Mass in the morning at the St. Augustine Cathedral, and (then) I call them and ask them to make a Lizzie salad for me. I recommend it. I believe it was named for a woman who was recovering from breast cancer. I have that with a root beer. How many places actually brew old-fashioned root beer anymore?

Is that part of what makes it special for you?

For me, it's the owners, Dennis Arnold and his wife, Tawna. They are good people. They took a building in the industrial bowels of downtown and did all the work to transform it into this amazing place. It's great to go to a place and feel comfortable.

Do you have any other Tucson favorites?

I really love Bookmans. I stop by there all the time, especially the one on Campbell (Avenue). That and Barrio Brewery, and I'm pretty happy.

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