Blog Archives

Grand Ave’s Sapna Cafe Space for Rent

[Source: Bragg’s Pie Factory]

We will miss Ana Borrajo on Grand Avenue and her Sapna Cafe but she is now cooking at the Pomegranite Cafe in Ahwautukee, and liking her new job. Taht means the old Sapna Cafe space is available for rent at Bragg’s Pie Factory.

The owner of Bragg’s Pie Factory is looking for someone who wants to open at least a breakfast/lunch spot. The space comes with lots of equipment in the space (including a stove/hood/fire suppression system).

They are a couple of serious, food related interested parties, but the owners of the building are not quite sure they will be the best fit.

If you know of anyone who might be interested please pass this on and have them contact Beatrice Moore at 602.391.4016.

Ideally, they are looking for a tenant to start a lease by February 1st.

My Florist Cafe near downtown Phoenix closes its doors

[Source: Howard Seftel, Arizona Republic]

Tom Tingle/The Arizona Republic

Once a hot spot on the corner of McDowell and Seventh Avenue, My Florist Café has seemed to be on life support for years.

Now the plug has been pulled: The restaurant’s phone has been disconnected. Equipment was being pulled out of the kitchen Friday morning. And word has gone out to performers scheduled for upcoming events that the venue is not available.

Back in its 1990s heyday, My Florist Café attracted a cool crowd of bohemians and suits, folks who had almost no downtown Phoenix-area hangout alternatives. Here you could get decent grub, and a vibe that could make you plausibly pretend you were in a big city.

But over the past decade, as downtown grew, My Florist Café couldn’t keep up, and lost its cachet. By 2010, it had pretty much become irrelevant. The restaurant also seemed to suffer when a second location was opened in Ventura, Calif.

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Downtown Phoenix’s Urban Wine Walk is Saturday


Downtown’s popular wine, dine, and ride event is back.

Experience our urban core’s burgeoning wine scene by hopping on the METRO light rail for the second Urban Wine Walk, happening this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

8-16The Urban Wine Walk is a FREE event that encourages adventurous participants to try new or familiar restaurants located along the METRO light rail in Downtown Phoenix, the Camelback Corridor and Tempe. Each restaurant will offer three wine samples and a snack all at can’t-beat-it pricing reserved exclusively for Urban Wine Walkers.

Market_TastingWEBTo take part in the Urban Wine Walk, simply print out the official map and wine listand jump on the light rail (NOTE: participating restaurants are located between the Mill Avenue and Central/Camelback stations) between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Saturday. And when you visit great restaurants like Kincaid’s1130 The RestaurantICON Lounge, Steve’s Greenhouse Grill and Phoenix Public Market, not to mention new addition Brick Pizzeria and Wine Bar, just let your server know you’re on the Urban Wine Walk to take full advantage of exclusive wine and food deals.

Other participating restaurants include Caffe Boa, Ghost Lounge, Hula’s Modern Tiki, Maizie’s Cafe and My Big Fat Greek Restaurant.

The weather is supposed to be optimal for Wine Walking (sunny skies, 100 percent chance of fun) so bring some friends Downtown. See you on Saturday!

This event kicks off [Downtown Phoenix Partnerships] 20 Years of Progress celebration going on Sept. 25 thru Nov. 16. Please visit [their] 20 Years of Progress site for full details.

** Participants will need to purchase a METRO day pass

*** Must be 21

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Conveyor-belt sushi is coming to Downtown Phoenix

[Source: Howard Seftel,]

Attention, downtown Phoenix: Are you ready for a conveyor-belt sushi restaurant?

Ready or not, here it comes, in the form of Sushi Revolution, which will be occupying the spot next to Fair Trade Café on First Avenue at Roosevelt Street around Thanksgiving.

Faster, more casual and less expensive than traditional sushi restaurants, conveyor-belt sushi is very popular in Japan. You sit at the counter and watch the never-ending offerings glide past. Nab whatever you like. Plates are color-coded, to indicate price. At the end of the meal, a staffer adds up your plates and totals your bill. (The Valley’s first conveyor-belt sushi restaurant, Sushi Eye, opened in Chandler in 2007.)

Chef/owner Antonio Chavira, 28, thinks downtown’s business folks and students will appreciate the format at lunch, while everyone will go for it at dinner or after a downtown event. He plans to stay open until 1 a.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Although he will offer traditional sushi, Chavira, who calls himself an Anglo-Hispanic, promises “lots of fusion influences.” You’ll see a chile relleno roll, a duck confit and fig roll and a Maine lobster roll.

Prices, he says, will range from $1.50 to $4.

Sushi Revolution is downtown Phoenix’s second sushi restaurant. Moira Sushi, at 215 E. McKinley St., opened about 18 months ago.


Sushi Revolution
1024 N. First Ave., Phoenix. (under construction).

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Owner’s illness may force closure of downtown Phoenix tavern

[Source: ABC15]

A downtown Phoenix institution may be forced to close because of the owner’s battle with cancer.

“I’ve known for two years,” said Michael Ratner, owner of Tom’s Tavern. “But I’m hard headed and I didn’t want to give in to anything”

The cancer just compounds other problems for the tavern and other downtown businesses, from a bad economy, to a downtown that suffers after sunset, plus a lot of construction.  But it’s the cancer that may push Ratner’s historic place over the edge.

Tom’s Tavern opened during the Great Depression, in 1929.  It’s been a diner and pool hall ever since with Presidents and Princes coming by to grab a bite over the years.  You can see the photographic proof around the restaurant.  It’s also the kind of place that regular customers have name plackards on chairs around the place.

But owner Ratner can barely get around with a walker and he is in serious pain, making running the restaurant next to impossible.  He hasn’t been able to be there in weeks.

“I have hope it will work out,” Ratner said with a tear. “I think the tradition of Tom’s can live on.”

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Dining tips for ASU downtown Phoenix students (and the rest of you too!)

While this article is focused on downtown ASU students, the tips are relevant for anybody who lives, works and/or plays in downtown Phoenix.

[Source: Kelly Green, New Times Chow Bella]

​Downtown Phoenix has come a long way in a short period of time. Anyone who’s been around longer than an ASU freshman can tell you that. But the dining scene for students still leaves a bit to be desired. Here are our tips for feeding yourself, these first few weeks of school.

Source: Kelly Green, Phoenix New Times

1. Become a Coupon Clipper Printer

Little known fact: has tons of special deals and coupons on local restaurants and businesses, just select the option from the “What to do” tab and print away.

2. Be Picky About Your On-Campus Eating

There are two restaurants in the bottom of the Cronkite School at 555 N. Central Avenue: Subway and El Portal. Subway is good for a few meals, then all of the sudden one day you walk in and never want to smell that bread again. And El Portal has earned quite a reputation locally for its health inspections, which you might want to check out here.​

Our pick for an on campus meal?

ASU’s Taylor Place (120 East Taylor Street) offers lunch and dinner to everyone, not just students or dorm residents. A little more than $8 will get you an hour of bottomless food and drinks at the buffet-style cafeteria, which has offers a pizza station, salad and fruit bars, pastries, and made-to-order sandwiches. Sit outside on the patio for less of a rowdy high school cafeteria experience, unless of course, that is your thing.

The places you should be going and our coffee picks, after the jump. Read the rest of this entry

Bliss and ReBar opening in downtown Phoenix


Photo courtesy of Bliss via

The handsomely restored bungalow at Roosevelt and Fourth Streets would seem to be one of downtown Phoenix’s premier restaurant spots, just a few blocks from the ASU campus and right in the middle of First Friday action.

But the last two occupants, Fate and Nine 05, failed to catch on. One potential explanation: According to owner Matt Carter, Nine 05 was “broken into 20 times” during its eight-month run.

Perhaps the third time will be the charm. At least that’s what the partners behind new Bliss, and its next-door watering hole, ReBar, are hoping. They’re opening Friday, Aug. 27.

Co-owner Mark Howard, whose other enterprise include Fez, promises “affordable, hip and comfortable dining,” with a “big-city feel.”

John Cook, who runs the kitchen at Fez, has put together a menu featuring “American classics with a twist.” Look for appetizers like braised beef nachos ($12), fried sausage ravioli ($8) and Swiss chard chicken lettuce wraps ($7).

Specialties include pot roast ($15), macaroni and cheese with chicken and bacon ($12), baked cod ($15) and double-cut pork chop ($15). You can finish up with a brownie hot fudge sundae ($6) or daily cobbler ($6).

The post-10 p.m. crowd, meanwhile, can graze on $5 nibbles like mini beef tacos, a “monster loaded” footlong and a trio of burger sliders. Weekend brunchers will find French toast ($9), omelets ($9) and a breakfast burrito ($9).

At ReBar, along with beer and wine, the emphasis is on modern cocktails, like the Absolut rubylicious martini ($9), cucumber martini ($9) and Ciroc redberry rapture ($8).


901 N. Fourth St., Phoenix, 602-795-1792.

Hours: 11 a.m. to midnight, Monday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., Friday; 10 a.m. to 2 a.m., Saturday; 10 a.m. to midnight, Sunday.

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Interested in checking it out?  Readers of DVC are invited to join Radiate Phoenix at this months gathering at ReBar. Come for a the happy hour and fun with fellow Downtown Phoenix friends!

Date: Tuesday, August 31
Time: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

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