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Guide: Where to Eat in Sierra Vista, Arizona
Restaurant Reviews by a Local Native

Sierra Vista Logo

This page last changed on 8-1-12. Huzzah for PIZZA! We have tried almost everything at Mimosa. Pizza from stone is what shines. Ray's in Huachuca City still going strong! Clean, good home cooking. Wow this update hurt! Ricardos burnt down and rebuilt. Real Taco gone, Sophias Gone. Da Bok replaced with mediocre.

Visit the Cochise County Food Reports it is uncanny how many of the restaurants I have removed from my lists ended up with a satisfactory or less rating. Yes, satisfactory means CRITICAL violations were noticed. It means they only change to pass the test. Ask yourself this: If they don't care about ______ what else do they not care about?

This list is even shorter. We are protesting the bad service and management in Sierra Vista and taking more of our "out-money" to Tucson. Everywhere I look restaurants are cutting corners here and there to offset the gas costs and economic crunch. I notice smaller portions, slightly cheaper ingredients.. frequent staff overturn, that sort of thing. Things are not as good on the eating front as they once were.

Here you will find a review of the quality and impressions of restaurants in Sierra Vista, Tucson, and Bisbee Arizona. My family moved to Sierra Vista, AZ in the late 50s. I was born and raised in Sierra Vista and have eaten in every establishment to date (35 years worth). We keep a running list of restaurants, and re-try the bad ones about once annually for verification. I am the sort that will open cabinets, check out back, and look in the kitchen pretending to be lost. I factor in all kinds of things, like whether police or border patrols eat there - more trustworthy. I get inside-scoop reports from local carpet cleaning businesses.

There are no ads here, and no one pays us anything or gives us free meals for these reviews.

Restaurant Name Description Price Conclusion
Italian (Good pasta where art thou?)
Vinny's New York
S. Hwy 92 near mall
Good pizza and wings. We rarely go since the soda fountain tastes like oil in the water. Moderate Enjoy it.
Pizzeria Mimosa just past Hereford post on 92 Go! Fabulous pizza from a real brick oven. Bread was great, pasta main courses acceptable. Expect the pasta to improve with practice? About 12 per head Very Nice
Mexican
Too many bad things have happened at Rigabertos, Trankas, and Tachos. They are removed for a year, and then we will see.
Ricardo's
South HWY 92
Make reservations, Awesome Margarita. Love the HUGE Thursday special. (ask for a real enchilada instead of flat) Good specials Missed them.
Santiago's
Bisbee Next to Copper Queen Hotel
They have backed away from flavor. Prices up and quality wavering this past year. Expensive Meh.
La Casita
Average is good if it is always the same. They really need competition in town. Reasonable Average.
Minor Ethnicities
Ali Baba's Speedway in Tucson Sigh. They are now a waste of storefront. Changed owners and using storebought bread. Reasonable Sad.
Thai: Bangkok Cafe corner of Speedway and Tucson Blvd. This is heaven in dishes! Cutest little skirt outfits, tidy little clean place. Don't be afraid to try it, no bad dish yet. Moderate Really Sweet.
Saigon Pho On University in Tucson Perfectly clean, everything was excellent. The fresh bread is light and hearty. Cheap Noodle Crazy.
Ethiopian: Zemams Broadway in Tucson. We are blessed by even having an Ethiopian place in the State. Excellent healthy food! Worth making time for. (Phoenix has Lalibella.) Moderate Rare treat!
Chinese Restaurants: Of the seven or so in Sierra Vista, we have NO Chinese food. We occasionally support Mr. Ahn, C.I. Chu or Great Wall. Don't waste the money For Asian we go to Tucson
Japanese (At last a Teppan to put in here! ^__^)
Cherry Blossom Noodle
in PHOENIX!
This is worth the drive. Seek it out! Best noodles in the state. Don't judge it on the outside. Reasonable WOW!
Hanna Tokyo
On 92
Nice staff. Not sure any of them are Japanese, but they did a decent job. Expensive Only Teppan choice.
Tanuki Garden
Mid Fry
Friendly staff. The new chefs keep being sloppy. We occasionally support them just to keep Japanese in town. Lower Expensive Not bad.
Vietnamese
The Peacock
S. Carmichael
Have not been there since the appliance fiasco. Expensive Let me know.
American (whatever that means)
Ray's
Huachuca City near Circle K
Cute servers, clean and new environment. Ribs, sandwiches, burgers were very good. Speed varies. Service was pleasant. Reasonable Worth the trip
Outback
Mixed quality. Why must Sierra Vista be cursed with such bad management? 1 yr later and front manager still wavers. They pushed Cat out and other good servers you will see at the roadhouse now. Expensive Not consistent
Mesquite Tree
S. Hwy 92 & Carr Canyon
10 Minutes south. Not as flavorful as the past. Good burger. Pleasant service but steep price for the food level. Sit on the patio weather permitting. Expensive Annual visit
Breakfasts
Bisbee Breakfast Club BBC
East side of the Bisbee mine
Fast food, good specials. Really nice layout. Featured lots of places. Call for their hours. Reasonable Good and stable
Bisbee Coffee Co. Not exactly a food place, but we support them. Classy and elegant. Ethiopian and Tanzanian coffees are Wow plus. Reasonable Good and stable
Kaufman's
Huachuca City
WOW, the caramel roll! Pastries to sing about. Very good value here. Cheap Consistent
Sandwiches
Bread Basket
On Wilcox st.
Pastry and Lunch only. Plain but tasty sandwiches, soups, and excellent pastries. Cheap+ Yum
Debbie's Deli Sadly closed due to battles with the Coopers. Tasty subs using Boars Head ingredients, best Hot Dog in town! Hope they find a new place. Cheap+ Please come back.
Romantic suggestions:
Cafe Roka
35 Main St. Bisbee
30 Minutes away in Bisbee, Posh New York influenced Creations. Reservations and scheduling. Pricey. Pampered!
Rosa's Little Italy
Bisbee
The finest uppity Italian. Worth every effort and expense. Pricey. Wow Plus one!
The outside Inn
4907 S. Highway 92
Cozy, low lit tasty Italian and traditional food, with a slight local flair. Not outrageous Love.
Pizzeria Mimosa Get reservations and try the Brick Oven Pizza. Expensive Worth it.
Dessert in the Desert. My favorite!
Dairy Queens: AVOID HWY 90 - kids workers with their scary boyfriends hanging around.
FRY - they tried to re-skin the front end, same thug element.
Avoid Avoid
Frost Frozen
Ina + Oracle
You must try this Gelato in north Tucson. Addicted to the coconut. Somewhat Love!
Frost on the
EAST SIDE!
You must try this Gelato in East Tucson. Still addicted to the coconut. Somewhat Love!
Cold Stone
Foothills + 92
Floors building up filth, sour stench in the air. More flavors mixed together than you expected. Prices out the roof. Why do they not have an inspection report? Problems. Sad. Normally Cold Stones are awesome.
Section contains successful boycotts and items to remind us to try.
Dawn's smoke Tavern (Pancake is same menu) IS GONE! Yay! Q and Lous is GONE! Yay! Bad food, hours, and Mngmt. Golden Corral is back in full force, keeps the Sunday brunch people occupied. Remember when they were a steakhouse? Country house and The Diner still run by smokers.
Mariscos was CRAZY expensive and we could not get past the premade tortillas and storebought shells. Hey, Tucson has Five Guys! Go to In and Out at once. (But maybe not the one at Ajo and 10) Don't delay! Mexico Lindo is GONE! Yay. They had to assume the debt buildup waste of Gonga burger. The end of Boston Subs is known. :( He just couldn't keep up with the volume. Poor chef choice also.
North Star shut down! YAY!! Keep up the boycotting of poor management. Chuys finally shut down! YAY!! Haunted location since NJ's, no business has been able to stay there. Gonga Burger shut down! YAY! He upset his neighbors and fought me for my words here about cheesy clip art. Dunkin shut down! YAY! They never figured out it was time to make the donuts. (choose from 3 kinds? They must have had a back door business)
Po Folks is GONE! Yay! We ran the longest campaign ever. Bad service, management, filth. Peter Piper has returned! Apparently corporate got word of the bad management and substituting ingredients. Birthdays SLIGHTLY less torture. How long can Filibertos be supported with one customer? Big Mo's failed on the second attempt. Cheap bun, not memorable. Where is a good cheap hamburger? (A:Ray's)
Trankas, Real Taco, Naranjos couldn't hang. Why oh why can't we get better mexican? I could throw a rock and hit the border. Tachos was cleaner this visit, still not properly chilled prep area, Fiesta brand Horchata came back in a jar. We tried Blue's Cafe. We were SO out of our element. Most uncomfortable. Will they survive? Someone needs to stop the growth of that stucco Cantina style building where Luke's was on Wilcox and s. 1st. Traffic can't see around it.
My Home vietnamese where Real Taco was = meh. BBQ at the main gate is improving, pray they nail it. GOOD BBQ is the Red trailer at the farmers market. Sophia's is a faded glimmer of hope. The German place that swooped into that storefront is not half bad. We enjoyed Sunna's Korean until the TV invaded. We tried to eat while some filthy Bones show digging up maggot remains was on. Never going back! I find Yelp often gets things pretty close. Lately we visit all top results by highest rating. It has been rewarding.

This review of Tucson restaurants is awesome! We strongly agree with most of it (not the Mexican parts but Indian is spot on.), and even rank them similarly.

Since the Arizona smoking ban has passed, life has been so wonderful! I am impressed that people respect the law for the most part. We went to another state that has not passed such a law. Tar yellowing the paint, smoke covered IHOP. Eew. I was so thankful to be home!

I love kids too much to feed them any fast food, so if you want those reviews, sorry, can't help! This page is mostly for non-chain type places. We don't prefer the noisy stuff, TVs in your face and all that. Eating is not about getting full, it is about the enjoyment of life and culture. Please support our local culture by sampling these listed places. I consider cheap to be around 6-8 bucks per person, moderate to be 9-10 bucks a head, and expensive to be 12 dollars or higher. (Sad that I had to adjust 20 percent for inflation in a couple short years.)

I have added some places from Bisbee and Tucson. If the Sierra Vista place you are considering is not on this list, it was too bad to mention. I know these reviews sound very negative, but they are not meant that way. Over the years we have encountered lawsuit level problems in our meals. Rather than listing all the bad experiences, we simply avoid listing the establishments. Kind of a "If you can't say anything nice" approach. One bad experience can remove them for a year, and many never make it back on the list.


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