Showing posts with label Greasewood Flats. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Greasewood Flats. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A Taste of Travel: Reata Pass Scottsdale AZ

Arizona Spring 2012 236A dust-filled rocky trail once led over Reata Pass just to the north of downtown Scottsdale, Arizona. In 1882 there was a one-room stage station there that served the coaches traveling between Phoenix and Fort McDowell on the Verde River. 

Reata Pass is now where we have our timeshare ‘home away from home’ at the Four Seasons Scottsdale Residence Club.  So close were we to the summit that from our place we could see the old water tower.

Our location put us conveniently between three wonderful Scottsdale eatery traditions: the Cavalliere family’s Reata Pass Steakhouse (which was closed for the season) and their Greasewood Flat outdoor eatery (click the link to read about it.)

Arizona Spring 2012 214This time – with a whole week in which to explore the area – we ‘discovered’ Pinnacle Peak Patio – and I say that with a smile because the place has been around since 1957 and we’d never even heard of it until last week.  (Have you noticed? There is just too much to discover when you travel!)

Arizona Spring 2012 243Perhaps a bit touristy, but if you want a taste of the Old West – not to mention some good ol’ Western hospitality – this expansive eatery and brewery (Cowgirl Blonde Ale and Gunslinger Stout among the brews) is the place to go.

We made two visits: once to belly up to the bar and sip some margaritas and the second time to fulfill a need for animal protein.

Arizona Spring 2012 242We dined at the outdoor picnic tables (open from April to October) and listened to some country music. Looking to the west we saw Pinnacle Peak and to the east Troon Mountain.

A  post about this place wouldn’t be complete without mentioning “Big Marv” Dickson – ‘a man of many steaks’ – who came to work here back in the 60’s as a dishwasher/landscaper and progressed up the food chain, you might say. He now holds the distinction of ‘having cooked more than 11 million mesquite grilled steaks.” So. . .that might be a tall tale, but with the number of steaks we saw being served we have no doubt it might be true.

Arizona Spring 2012 240

This was our picnic table view of  Troon Mountain, elevation 3,478-feet (1,060M). To put that in perspective, the elevation of Washington State's Snoqualmie Pass is 3,022-feet (921M).

If You Go:  North on Pima Road to Happy Valley (you’ll see Pinnacle Peak) Follow Happy Valley to Alma School Road. Left on Jomax to reach Pinnacle Peak Patio (10426 E Jomax Rd. 85262, phone 480-585-1599) or continue on to Greasewood Flat and Reata Pass.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Scottsdale Eateries - off the beaten path

Don't you love it when people who've visited a place, or those who live there, tip you off to some wonderful eatery that you would never in a million years have found on your own?  We had several recommendations for Southwest 'finds' that were so great I need to pass them on to you, with a big thank you to those who told us about them:

Greasewood Flat dining area
j.smith photo, (c) 2011
Greasewood Flat: If you've not been to this 30-year-old local favorite atop Reata Pass, then you haven't experienced Phoenix/Scottsdale to its fullest.  And one trip will likely not be enough to get a taste (quite literally) of the place.  Greasewood Flat is a massive open air dining field of sorts enclosed by a fence made up of old time farm and ranch equipment.  You'll sit at one of those picnic tables while eating one of the best burgers ever made and washing it down with a tall cool one or two. There's usually a big bonfire going and if you time it right, a band will be playing. Those country gals and guys will be struttin' past doin' the Country Two-Step and it likely won't be long before you are tempted to join 'em. 
(27900 N. Alma School Parkway, Scottsdale, 85262, 480-585-9430)

Reata Pass Steakhouse:  Located just next door to Greasewood Flat in the original 1882 stage coach stop on Reata Pass.  Even if you are stuffed from that burger I suggested, you'll want to go inside and take a look around, then put it on your list for the next visit.
  •  This year we visited the Reata Pass Cavalliere's Farmer's Market, held each Sunday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. The booths are tucked in between the two eateries.  Homemade pickles, salsa and jams were being sold and the smell of the whole pig roasting on a spit made our mouths water. It was also hard to resist the homemade vanilla ice cream being served right out of the mixer.

Breakfast at the Pinnacle Peak General Store
j. smith photo, (c) 2011
Pinnacle Peak General Store:  We would never have stopped at this place had our friends, whose recommendations we value, suggested it.  As you are driving past it on Pima or Pinnacle Peak Roads, it appears to be a service station with a sign reading, "General Store" on the adobe hacienda-style building behind it.  "You have to have breakfast there!" we were told and so we went.  What a find!  The interior still houses a post office (like none you've ever seen) and an eating area amidst a museum of country western memorabilia.  We chose to sit in the sunny courtyard near the fountain with its hacienda-like feel to eat our enormous breakfasts.
(8711 E. Pinnacle Peak Road, 85255, 480-991-1822)

Overeasy Cafe: Was recommended by a friend in Portland, Oregon who used to live in Arizona. We didn't get to this one, but I checked out the menu and with plates called, "The Crying Pig, The Mile High and The Pollo Loco" (that last one is 'crazy chicken' for you non--Spanish readers), we have it at the top of our 'next time' list.
(This place has just expanded and now can be found at  two locations:  The newest is at 4730 E. Indian School Rd. #123, 85260, 602-468-3447 and also at 9375 E. Bell Road, same phone number.)

Tomorrow I will tell you about our finds in Tucson. If you have recommendations for Scottsdale/Phoenix please tell us about them by using the comment box below. 

Note:  Don't be put off leaving a comment because you have to fill in an email address.  It doesn't appear on your comment; it is a security measure to make sure you aren't some robot roaming the blog and spamming. You can chose how you are identified: by name, nickname, or anonymous (but then wouldn't you want us to know who made a great suggestion?)


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