Sedona Restaurants

About This Guide

These listings are a selective guide to area restaurants. All were visited anonymously, and the blurbs reflect independent judgments; no fees were paid for inclusion. Price ranges, necessarily somewhat subjective, are: Inexpensive = $10 or less, Moderate = $11-20, Expensive = $20-30, Very Expensive = $30 and up.


AZ-179, South of the “Y”

Creekside Restaurant

The menu at Creekside Restaurant seasonally, but rest assured you’ll be able to choose from American comfort food, gluten-free dishes and vegetarian options. During our visit, it was all about the Ahi Tuna Burger, chunks of tuna mixed with green onion, fresh ginger and shallots topped with a delicious wasabi aioli that’s sure to open your sinuses. The ahi is served on a roll and comes with your choice of arugula salad or – our favorite – crispy, skin-on, seasoned fries. If the weather is warm, make sure you request a table on the veranda, which is suspended above Oak Creek in the boughs of sycamore and cottonwood trees. Open daily, 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., for breakfast, lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 251 AZ-179 at Creekside Plaza (928-282-1705) (Moderate to Expensive)

Elote Café

Trust us: The food at Chef Jeff Smedstad’s small eatery is worth the wait. Start with a white sangria and the signature elote appetizer, which includes roasted corn in a spicy-mayo sauce topped with lime and cotija cheese. For those with light appetites, check out the beef barbacoa quesadilla made with Niman Ranch short-rib meat stuffed inside a homemade tortilla. The lamb adobo is the most popular large plate on the menu, but we are equally as smitten with the vegetable relleno, a poblano chili stuffed with a seasonal variety of vegetables, nuts and cheeses. Open Tuesday to Saturday, 5 p.m. to closing, for dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 771 AZ-179 at King’s Ransom Sedona Hotel (928-203-0105) (Moderate to Expensive)

El Portal Sedona

El Portal Sedona guests get first dibs on breakfast at the comfy seats in the warmly decorated dining room, but there’s also limited seating for the public, with advance reservations. From first bite, it’s clear owners Steve and Connie Segner bring to the fine-dining experience the same meticulous excellence that makes El Portal one of the most luxurious U.S. bed-and-breakfast inns. Open daily, 7:30-10 a.m., for breakfast. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 95 Portal Lane (800-313-0017) (Moderate)

El Rincon Restaurante Mexicano

sm Hottips logoWhen it’s warm, we love sitting outside on El Rincon’s patio with its large sycamore tree. During our visit, we relaxed under orange and yellow umbrellas and sipped Margaritas Magnifica. El Rincon’s menu combines traditional Mexican cuisine with some Navajo influences. We ordered the two house specialties: Chimichangas and Navajo Pizza. The first dish consists of hand-rolled sopapilla masa stuffed with either meat or veggies and topped with your choice of red or green sauce. For those of you who’ve spent time on the Navajo Reservation, the Navajo Pizza will remind you of a Navajo taco, but instead of using fry bread, El Rincon builds its pizza on top of a thin sopapilla crust. Toppings include beans, lettuce, tomato, cheese and your choice of sauce.  Seasonal patio dining available. Open Monday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., for lunch; open Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. (8 p.m., Sunday), for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, Disc • 336 AZ-179 at Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village (928-282-4648) (Inexpensive to Moderate)

Hideaway House

This double-decker restaurant features indoor and outdoor seating on both levels. The space is reminiscent of a European garden; the terraces boast forest-green walls, lush potted plants and iron lanterns. As for the menu, Hideaway House offers soups, salads, sandwiches, specialty pizzas, pastas and entrées such as Meatloaf Italiano and Brick Chicken. (It also has a killer happy hour from 2 to 6 p.m. daily.) The Bowtie Chicken Formaggio came highly recommended, so we decided to try it. The big bowl of pasta features roasted chicken, tangy sun-dried tomatoes, tender pancetta and fresh spinach tossed in a pesto cream sauce and served with a warm slice of cheesy garlic bread. Hideaway House also has a reputation for pizza, and we were surprised at how much we loved the Blanco Classico, a white pie topped with seasoned ricotta cheese, garlic, olive oil, fresh spinach and big slices of whole tomatoes. The eatery makes its desserts from scratch, so the selection changes regularly. If the cobbler is available, gobble it up. Open daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. (10 p.m., Friday and Saturday), for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx • 231 AZ-179 (928-202-4082) (Moderate to Very Expensive)

The Hudson

Views? Check. Contemporary setting? Check. Live music? Check. Chef-driven menu that keeps you coming back again and again? Check. Start your evening with a Fig & Ginger Mule cocktail and Executive Chef Jeff Storcz’s corn chowder. Then move on to the Peppercorn Prime New York Steak, easily one of the best steaks in Sedona. This work of art is accompanied by whipped potatoes and seasonal vegetables (think braided green beans). For lighter appetites we recommend the East Coast Fish Sandwich or the Hudson Mushroom Burger featuring jalapeno bacon, haystack onion strings, arugula and truffled Gouda. Lunch is all about the Sedona Quinoa Salad. Open daily, 11:30 a.m. to close, for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx • 671 AZ-179 at Hillside Sedona (928-862-4099) (Moderate to Very Expensive)

The Inn on Oak Creek

The Inn serves up a four-course breakfast to hotel guests and locals that’s as incredible as the views of Oak Creek from its terrace – and you know that’s saying something. We feasted on granola and maple yogurt, warm cinnamon pear crisp, Italian almond coffee cake, bacon and Gruyère muffins, chocolate-stuffed French toast with raspberry sauce and the best pepper bacon we’ve ever tasted. Open daily, ­8-9:30 a.m., for breakfast. Reservations required for non-guests. Visa, MC, AmEx, Disc • 556 AZ-179 (928-282-7896) (Moderate)

Javelina Cantina

Blessed with classic Sedona views through the window, the restaurant boasts eye candy inside as well, in the form of huge Mexican-style platters. Try the burrito stuffed with grilled boneless chicken bites and herbed grilled green and yellow zucchini. If that doesn’t tickle your taste buds, opt for the Rocky Point Tilapia fish tacos with puffy, battered chunks of firm, mild whitefish in soft flour tortillas, with salsa picante, cabbage and spicy “southwestern” tartar sauce. Leave room for Bavarian-crème-filled churro pastries, served with whipped cream and vanilla ice cream drizzled with chocolate. Open daily, 11:30 a.m. to close, for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc, DC • 671 AZ-179 at Hillside Sedona (928-282-1313) (Moderate)

Mooney’s Irish Pub

In some places, pub fare translates to a bowl of pretzels or Chex Mix. Not at Mooney’s Irish Pub. We like the pub burgers: three Angus sliders topped with sharp cheddar and bacon, and served with fries. If you’re looking for something to go with that frosty pint of Guinness, check out the corned beef on marble rye or the cheese-and-chowder-board. The pub serves food until the wee hours and boasts Irish and Arizonan beers on tap. Open daily, 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa • 671 AZ-179 at Hillside Sedona (928-282-2331) (Inexpensive to Moderate)

Oak Creek Brewery & Grill

There’s something comforting about sitting down with a frosty glass of microbrewed beer and good conversation at the end of the day. That must be why Oak Creek Brewery & Grill has been packed for lunch and dinner ever since it opened its doors in 2001. As for its beers, two of our favorites – the hefeweizen and the Forty-Niner Gold Lager – are both award winners. The brewery’s thick-cut, beer-battered onion rings are the perfect complement to your beers. The generous portion of rings comes with a side of Southwest ranch dip topped with cinnamon, cumin, nutmeg and paprika. The most popular menu item, said our server, is the fish and chips, and it’s this writer’s favorite fish and chips plate in all of northern Arizona. Four large chunks of North Atlantic cod are battered in beer and deep-fried until golden brown. The cod comes with a mound of waffle-cut fries, coleslaw studded with golden raisins and black sesame seeds, tartar sauce and ketchup. The second most popular item on the menu is the barbecue pork ribs, available as a half or full slab. The tender, smoky ribs have just the right amount of sauce (with a little extra served on the side if you really like your barbecue messy) and are accompanied by fries and the aforementioned colorful coleslaw. Open daily, 11:30 a.m to 8:30 p.m., for lunch and dinner. Reservations suggested. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 336 AZ-179 at Tlaque­paque Arts & Crafts Village (928-282-3300) (Moderate to Expensive)

René at Tlaquepaque

The menu at René features classic French dishes, and the extensive wine list has won numerous awards of excellence from Wine Spectator. You would be hard-pressed to find a better roasted duck on any menu in northern Arizona, and it’s one of our personal favorites. The significant portion of fowl has a crisp skin and is finished with a sun-dried cherry sauce. René is renowned for Executive Chef Walter Paulson’s Colorado Rack of Lamb, but we had heard the True Dover Sole served à la meuniere was incomparable, and the rumor turned out to be true. Walter also makes all of his desserts in-house; we couldn’t make up our minds about which sounded best, so we ordered the earthy goat cheesecake and the passion-fruit panna cotta, an Italian custard served in a 1920s-style champagne glass. Open daily, 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., for lunch, and 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. (9 p.m., Friday and Saturday), for dinner. Reserva­tions suggested. MC, Visa, AmEx • 336 AZ-179 at Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village (928-282-9225) (Expensive to Very Expensive)

Secret Garden Café

We have great memories of “Yesterday’s Soup,” a light broth with chunks of chicken, rotelli pasta and vegetables spiced just right and the rich, thick and fully flavorful “signature” corn chowder. We’re also fans of the Southwest Cobb Salad – a feast of fresh portobello mushroom chunks, free-range chicken, red peppers, corn, roasted tomato, cucumbers and asiago cheese topped off with an excellent balsamic-based dressing. For dessert, a delicate mango mousse cake, dusted with shredded coconut, makes an unusual and delicious end to a midday escape. Open daily, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., for breakfast, lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 336 AZ-179 at Tlaque­paque Arts & Crafts Village (928-203-9564) (Inexpensive to Moderate)

Spoke & Wheel

sm Hottips logoBicycles are the theme at this casual eatery at Los Abrigados Resort & Spa. Bikes lean against the walls and hang from the patio awning, giving the place a hip vibe. The menu features sandwiches, salads and entrées that range from salmon to steaks, but we recommend the creative pizzas and burgers. The Mediterranean pizza is topped with lots of chewy mozzarella, parmesan, pine nuts, tomatoes, olives and truffle oil. Instead of the traditional red sauce, the pie features a fresh spinach pesto. Spoke & Wheel’s burgers are all seasoned with the chef’s umami dust and topped with innovative ingredients. We love the black truffle cheese, pancetta and port wine syrup burger, which comes with your choice of seasoned fries or a small wedge salad. Open daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 160 Portal Lane in Los Abrigados Resort & Spa (928-203-5334) (Moderate to Expensive)

T. Carl’s Restaurant

Enjoy views of the surrounding red rocks and Poco Diablo Resort’s lush fairways from dining room at this casual restaurant. Executive Chef Felipe Felix’s dinner menu features everything from appetizers to gluten-free options to entrées such as grilled lamb drizzled with a dark-cherry demi glace and the Grand Ribeye: a 16-ounce grilled rib-eye steak served with creamy horse radish. For vegetarians, check out the Portobello Ravioli or the Fresh Herb Alfredo Pasta. Open daily, 7-11 a.m., for breakfast; 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., for lunch, and 5-9 p.m. for dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc 1752 S. AZ-179 at Poco Diablo Resort (928-282-7333) (Moderate to Expensive)

Timo

sm Hottips logoThe interior of this Los Abrigados restaurant brings to mind Napa Valley – think wood-covered menus, hardwood floors, a brick fireplace, bare Edison light bulbs and bottles of wine doubling as décor. Chef Mercer Mohr’s menu includes numerous unique small plates so we started our dinner with three thick slices of bruschetta topped with steak tartar and a pungent Danish blue cheese. One of our favorite flavors of the night was the organic beet salad, which we also shared. The colorful salad consists of beets, goat cheese, apples, dried strawberries, fresh raspberries and candied pecans topped with a balsamic-pomegranate infusion. After all that food, we shared an entrée: lamb adobo with red curry, farmers cheese and basmati rice. The lamb literally fell off the bone, and we were intrigued by the complexity of the sauce’s flavors – smoky Spanish adobo meets spicy Indian curry. All the desserts at Timo are made on-site, and we tried the cinnamon crisp topped with Nutella, bananas, strawberries and ricotta cheese with a side of salted-caramel gelato. The menu says it’s big enough to share, and that’s no joke. Four people would easily be satisfied with a single portion…though two of us devoured it. Open Wednesday through Sunday, 4-9 p.m., for dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 160 Portal Lane in Los Abrigados Resort & Spa (928-203-5334) (Inexpensive to Very Expensive)


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