A month ago we described a group of “original” to Tucson eateries and now would like to note that there are many more great Tucson Restaurants close by. In most cases, these are one of a kind eating experiences to suit the most devoted foodie. Some of our favorites include the following, ethnic spots to enjoy fabulously different food experiences from other countries.
Café Poca Cosa (Unique Mexican), is always the first answer to the question “Are there any good Mexican restaurants?” It seems absurd in a town like this so close to the border. There are, of course, many, many good Mexican restaurants but only one is Café Poca Cosa. Unlike many other restaurants the owner/chef, Suzana Davila, is generally present in the dining room making sure everything is perfect. She is a master of molé and changes the menu twice a day based on market purchases.The menu is presented on chalkboard and requires at least the basic knowledge of chicken, fish and beef in Español (or the helpful staff will translate). A unique dining experience featuring regional flavors culled from Suzana’s Guaymas, Sonora home. This is my personal favorite Tucson restaurant at 110 Pennington Street in the middle of downtown Tucson. Reservations are recommended; the place is incredibly popular. Call 520-622-6400. Open until 10 p.m. Friday & Saturday; until 9 p.m. other nights, and closed Sunday & Monday.
Zemams (Ethiopian) is now two times as good. The original location at 2731 E. Broadway (520-323-9928) has expanded to Zeman’s Too at 119 E. Speedway (520-882-4955).Though they have no
liquor license you are encouraged to bring your own for a $1.50 corking fee. Featuring Ethiopian specialty dishes both meat and veggie served on a delicious giant circle of native Ingera bread torn into bite size pieces and eaten with “your hands”, the way you remember it from childhood. Zemams also offers a gluten free version of the bread if you order it before your arrival to avoid waiting. Surroundings are unpretentious and the food is just wonderful. Open 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and closed Monday.Many restaurants are closed on Sunday so this is a nice alternative to the Sunday blahs.
Athens on 4th Avenue (Greek) is at 500 N. 4th Avenue & 6th Street. The food is authentic Greek, featuring fresh fish & seafood, meat dishes & vegetarian specialties plus homemade soups and desserts, all at a moderate price. As you will see on their website, chef Andreas Delfakis opened his restaurant in Tucson in 1993 and has been honored with Best Greek Restaurant mentions in many publications over the years. Athens has a faithful following and is open Monday – Saturday from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Call 520-624-6886. If you like Greek food you will love this place on the very touristy 4th Avenue shopping street. Opah!
Bangkok Cafe (Thai) is located at 2511 E Speedway Blvd. (520-323-6555) just across the street from the Sam Hughes Historic District.Open Monday through Thursday until 9 p.m. and Friday/Saturday until 9:30 p.m., closed on Sunday. Serving authentic Thai dishes featuring beef, pork, chicken, shrimp and squid with noodles in varying degrees of spiciness from mild to intense, according to the diner’s wishes and including exotic spices and sauces. Many curry dishes are also
on the menu. Jasmine or Green Tea, tropical juices and even an Arnold Palmer (50/50 tea & lemonade) are some of the beverages. There is no bar service.Homemade ice creams for dessert.
More favorite restaurants will be featured in months to come. In the meantime, try one of these great places in central and downtown Tucson, AZ.