[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Best All-You-Can-Eat Buffet
Best Bagel Bakery
Best Bagels
Best BBQ
Best Bread Creations
Best Breakfast Under $5
Best Breakfast
Best Burgers
Best Butcher Shop
Best Cannoli
Best Casual Dining
Best Chinese
Best Delicatessen
Best Desserts
Best Dim Sum
Best Diner
Best Fine Dining
Best Fish Market
Best Food On I-10
Best Formal Dining
Best Free Snacks
Best Fresh-Baked Bread
Best Greek
Best Hot-Links
Best Ice Cream
Best Indian
Best Italian
Best Korean
Best Late-Night Restaurant
Best Local Flavor
Best Lunch Over $5
Best Lunch Under $5
Best Margarita For Kids
Best Margaritas
Best Marinara Sauce
Best Mexican (No Lard)
Best Middle Eastern
Best Middle-Eastern Market
Best New Restaurant
Best Omelet Bar
Best Outdoor Dining
Best Pizza
Best Place To Eat Fried Pickles
Best Produce
Best Salads
Best Salsa
Best Sandwich Advocate For Fire Safety
Best Sandwiches
Best Smoothie Bar
Best Sonoran Hot-Dog
Best Sunday Brunch
Best Sushi
Best Sweet Shop
Best Taco Stand & Hot-dog Stand
Best Take-Out
Best Taste Of New York
Best Thai
Best Tortillas
Best Truck Stop
Best Vegan Selections
Best Vegetarian Fine-Dining
Best Veggie Burger
Best Vietnamese Soup

Best Lunch Over $5

Presidio Grill
3352 E. Speedway

READERS' PICK: There is no question that Presidio Grill is one of the best places to eat in Tucson. For that matter, if Presidio Grill was taken, by some displacement of time and space, and set down in New York or Los Angeles, we'd bet that Presidio Grill is one of the few restaurants in town that would survive such a move intact. And with its supper club, Presidio serves Tucson with quick transport to an urbane night out. The kitchen is young, energetic, with good sense and good taste in equal measure. Presidio's kitchen is also responsive. That means if you want bleu cheese crumbles on your steak or hamburger, and it doesn't appear on the menu, you won't get excuses. You'll get a perfectly grilled burger of density and flavor or steak of fine texture and taste topped by the melting cheese of your request. But it's also the range of this kitchen that gives it high marks. Light food, bright food, satisfying food. Presidio Grill's menu is filled with inventive recipes based on the regional cooking of North America with definite Southwestern accents. And they do it well. Take for example the angel hair pasta with tomatoes marinated in garlic, shallots, fresh basil with vinegar and olive oil, tossed with basil, pine nuts, fresh grated imported parmesan, and a bit more virgin olive oil. Or pasta shells tossed with wilted fresh greens, roasted red peppers, fresh parmesan, a bit of garlic and butter, and studded with nicely grilled fresh shrimp and spicy andouille sausage. With Presidio's well-crusted bread and butter graced with a bit of fresh thyme, both of these sit easily on the palate, and eminently satisfy. Salads, too, are a Presidio point of distinction. The antipasto platter is enough for even three to satisfactorily share. It comes brimming with marinated chicken salad, slices of Westphalian ham, a bit of pasta salad, smoked gouda and pistachio-crusted fontina cheeses, good eggplant capponata and roasted head of garlic to squeeze on grilled herb bread. There's also a southwestern style Caesar with marinated and grilled shrimp and roasted red peppers. You might also split the mix of fresh basil and lettuces, tossed with roasted duck, asparagus, black bean and corn relish, a bit of red onion, and the sharp, earthy flavors of gorgonzola cheese all graced by a lemony balsamic vinaigrette. There are also more new vegetarian items in store this fall. It's good stuff, and Tucson's come to expect cooking like this from Presidio Grill.

READERS' POLL RUNNER-UP: Good Earth Restaurant & Bakery, 6366 E. Broadway.

STAFF PICK: KingFisher Bar & Grill, 2564 E. Grant Road, celebrated its second anniversary September 1. Among the four owners, chefs Jeff Azersky and Jim Murphy have become guides for other venues following their lead in inventive and precise presentations from the repertoire of American grill cuisine. In the fall, the grilled fish sandwich of cabrilla is firm, fresh, flavorful flesh, perfectly cooked, with a tasty cilantro pesto, roasted red and poblano peppers, and creamy, melted white cheddar, served on a roll of great texture with a superlative red cabbage slaw and true shoestring potatoes. A dish of bow-tie pasta with sweet scallops, fresh-as-sea-spray blacklip mussels, roasted red peppers, kale, spinach, and earthy crimini and shiitake mushrooms in a rich broth sends us to the bread basket to sop up what's left. A shared dessert of caramel tuile taco bursting with berries and topped with cream's almost too much.

Case History

1998 Winner: Café Poca Cosa
1997 Winner: The Cottonwood Café
1996 Winner: Presidio Grill

Page Back

Home | Arts & Culture | Cafés | Chow | City Life | Kids | Outdoors
Saloons | Shopping | Most Wanted | Credits | Search

Copyright © 1995-98 Tucson Weekly

Page Forward