(Editor's Note: The verdict is in for the Best Burger in Tucson.) Last week Neighbor Roy & I continued our quest to find the best burger in Tucson. So far, we’ve reviewed Monkey Burger Downtown, and the new Diablo Burger in the Rialto building across from Hotel Congress. On both occasions, we had an overall delightful experience, but did note that both had their strengths & weaknesses. We also reviewed Fleming’s $6 Happy Hour burger.
Last year (2012) Southern Arizona Guide ranked Zinburger Number One. But now Zin has a lot of new competition, and some of the old, established burger joints have upped their game.
So many people told us that Lindy’s on 4th Avenue has the best burgers that we had to include it in our samplings. We were not disappointed.
We arrived at Lindy’s before the lunch crowd could climb out from behind their desks. The first thing we noticed was that Lindy’s fits right into the funky, quirky, slightly gritty 4th Ave. neighborhood. The interior is small and has the feel of an old downtown dive bar that’s been there since dirt was invented. Yet some of the art on the walls was “modern”; or at least “interesting”. Continue reading
Spring 2013. It’s been a while since I ventured down to 4th Avenue. Because of the (eventual) arrival of our Modern Streetcar, the place has been a construction nightmare. Nevertheless, I was anxious to see the progress.
On this early May day I was scheduled to meet my friend Jeffrey for lunch. My criteria for the choice of restaurant were fourfold. (1) It had to be near downtown where Jeff works. (2) It had to be one I had not yet reviewed. (3) It had to have received generally positive reviews over a long period of time because I hate writing negative reviews. (When I go into a restaurant to do a review, I expect a good dining experience because I’ve done my homework.) And (4) it had to be open for lunch. Delectables seemed to meet my demanding criteria.
I had never been to Delectables and was most pleased to see such a large patio for outdoor dining. A sign indicated that on Friday & Saturday nights they have live entertainment. Once inside, I was equally delighted. The place is much larger than it appears from the street and exhibits a warm, inviting interior space. The large windows in front along the sidewalk seem ideal for people watching, which I understand is the sport-of-choice along 4th Avenue.
I was seated by “MOM”. She took my drink order and said she’d be right back. I mean, I assumed “MOM” is her name because the word was tattooed large and in living color on her partially exposed chest.
Soon, Jeff joined me at my window table. It turns out that he knew the man and woman seated at the table nearest ours. This is not unusual. Jeff knows just about everyone who is anyone in Tucson. We all had a pleasant semi-business conversation for several minutes before returning to the business at hand: lunch.
“MOM” returned to take our order. Jeff ordered “Tucson’s Best Chef” salad ($10). I ordered the “Corned Beef Reuben on Rye” with a side of potato salad ($9).
Jeff & I have enjoyed lunch together every month or two for many years and always have a lot of catching up to do. We continued chatting amicably through lunch, talking mostly about work and family. Eventually I remembered that I was here to do a dining review and asked Jeff his opinion of his meal. “Excellent! Best chef salad in Tucson.” High praise indeed.
My Reuben was also excellent, as was the potato salad. To the extent I have a quibble, the scoop of potato salad was a bit miserly. If there had been two scoops I would have devoured both.
Delectables has an extensive menu, including vegan & gluten-free, and a full bar. In a refrigerated windowed display case they also exhibit a variety of desserts. Jeff & I decided to split a berry & pear tart, but could have had anything from a chocolate éclair to a crème brulee to a slice of cheesecake. The tart was very good. Perhaps next time I’ll try the cheesecake. Or maybe ….
Delectables has been here since 1973. I can’t believe Jeff has been coming here for years and never told me.
“MOM” turned out to be Gabrielle and a cheerful, efficient waitress. Good meals. Fine desserts. Excellent service. Pleasant atmosphere. And weird people to watch. What’s not to like about Delectables?
As we were leaving, Gabrielle handed us each a coupon for 15% off our next entree. My mother-in-law is visiting. Perhaps Ms. Karen and I will show her the real Tucson and stop in at Delectables for another fine meal.
Delectables belongs on our SouthernArizonaGuide.com 2013 List of The Best Restaurants in Tucson & Southern Arizona. Highly recommended.
I should mention that the Modern Streetcar construction on 4th Avenue has been completed and street parking was a breeze. Also, Delectables has a parking lot in back of the restaurant. You can access it via 6th Street.
Update: the following week 4 of us went to Delectables and enjoyed another fine lunch, this time utilizing the 15% discount card we received on my first visit. There was no reason to change my original rating. Very good, indeed!
533 N 4th Ave, Tucson
For Dining reviews of the Best Dining in Southern Arizona visit us here.
March, 2012 - The B Line is casual dining and a local favorite for good reason. For breakfast, their crepes, bagels, and pancakes are excellent.
For lunch and dinner, their menu is varied - from soups & sandwichs, to salads w/ or w/o chicken or fish; to carne asada burritos; to pan fried salmon - all very tasty.
The B Line is justly famous for its fresh baked cookies, cakes, and pies. Dessert here is exceptional. Probably the best in Tucson.
Service can be spotty - quick to serve, but late to remove dirty dishes. The place is small and, at rush hours, quite noisy. The seating is not particularly comfortable. But if you like the 4th Avenue scene, the B Line is great for good food and people-watching.
Plus a most interesting selection of beers.
I have sent a lot of folks to the B Line over the years and never heard a complaint from any of them. Most come back and thank me for recommending the B Line.
The B Line
621 N. 4th Avenue Tucson, AZ
For Dining reviews of the Best Dining in Southern Arizona visit us here.
As I usually do before I go to a dining establishment to write a review, I checked with the usual "real customer review" sites that contain some portion of "fake" reviews. Yelp & TripAdvisor customer reviews for Brooklyn Pizza are generally 3-4 Stars. And Tucson Weekly's readers usually vote it the Best of Tucson.
Without a doubt, WORST PIZZA I HAVE EVER EATEN. In fact, it was so bad that I quit after one slice. My Brooklyn pizza had no redeeming features whatever. For example, the crust had the consistency and taste of wet cardboard. The ingredients were anything but fresh. I asked to speak with the manager or owner and was told he was on vacation. Perhaps that accounts for the lack of quality.
Moreover, the place was dirty. I don't think the men's bathroom had been cleaned in days.
AWFUL! I give it 1-Saguaro: not quite as good as prison food. And yes, when I was a social worker in Watts after the Watts Riots, I did dine with some prisoners and I can tell you it was pretty bad. Actually, in over 90 dining reviews I have written in the past 3 years, this is the first to earn a 1-Saguaro.
For all you environmentally conscious people out there, Brooklyn Pizza Company has gone 100% solar.
Brooklyn Pizza Company
534 N. 4th Ave. Tucson
The Yelp and TripAdvisor reviews of Magpies are all over the place. However, some years, Tucson Weekly's readers vote Magpies the Best of Tucson. Some years Magpies is runner up to Brooklyn Pizza down the street. They do offer a decent selection of local brews and just about any kind of topping you desire.
Magpies offers you a choice of crust and they don't skimp on the cheese. They advertise fresh ingredients and the toppings on mine were in fact fresh. Compared to some of the better pizza places in Tucson, Magpies crust was thicker, with heavy layers of sauce and cheese. They are incredibly rich and flavorful, but beware. A half hour later you may feel like you swallowed a brick.
The pizza & salad lunch is a particularly good value. You can call ahead of arrival and order which sometimes is a good idea because Magpies can get very busy. 520-628-1661.
Our waiter was knowledgeable about their locally brewed beers and made a helpful recommendation.
There are 3 other Magpies in Tucson, but only the 4th Ave. store has outdoor patio dining. They also offer take-out and take-n-bake.
605 N. 4th Ave. Tucson
6342 N. Oracle Rd Suite B403
105 S. Houghton