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.

Uptown Sedona

Cowboy Club/The Silver Saddle

Cow­boy Club cuisine is high-desert style, the very definition of “popular gourmet.” Start with the appetizer sampler, a tasty collection of regional treats that will have even the most jaded city slicker yodeling. As a main course we took aim at the But­ter­milk Fried Chicken, a Texas-sized portion that hit the bull’s-eye; the creamy cumin gravy adds just the right touch of chuckwagon ambience. Cowboy Club: Open daily, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., for lunch; 4:30-10 p.m., for dinner. Silver Saddle Room: Open daily, 5-9 p.m., for dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 241 N. AZ-89A (928-282-4200) (Moderate to Very Expensive)

Cress on Oak Creek

Cress takes creek-side dining to a whole new level: Some linen-clad tables are so close to Oak Creek you could easily put your toes in the water. Choose from the three- or four-course prixe-fix menu or the six-course tasting menu. Our favorite options include the Maine Day Boat Scallop and the Creekstone Filet Mignon. You’ll remember the Chamomile Pavlova dessert for the rest of your life. Reservations strongly recommended. Open daily, 5:30-9 p.m., for dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc, DC 301 L’Auberge Lane at L’Auberge de Sedona Resort (928-282-1661) (Very Expensive)

89Agave Cantina

It would be sacrilege to ignore the drink menu here, which includes more than 60 premium tequilas. We started with the 89Agave Ultimate Margarita featuring premium reposado tequila, agave nectar, Cointreau, Grand Marnier and fresh lime. The Mexico-meets-France cocktail was strong and not sweet like some margaritas. For dinner, our server recommended the Street Tacos, three traditional Mexican tacos served in soft corn tortillas with guacamole and sour cream on the side. Choose from chile-marinated steak or chicken; slow-roasted pork; garlic-and-lemon sea bass with mango salsa; or achiote-citrus marinated Mexican white shrimp (our favorite). Open daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 254 AZ-89A (928-282-7200) (Moderate to Expensive)

Etch Kitchen and Bar

It’s safe to say there’s no setting in Sedona quite like L’Auberge, which is why it’s become our favorite place to relax with friends for drinks and appetizers. We like the artisanal charcuterie plate with its seasonal selection of three cheeses, meats, breads, Marcona almonds and dried cranberries. The roasted tomato hummus is exceptional, too, and the marinated olives are served warm. Staying for dinner? Go for the Maine Day Boat Scallop with cheddar grits, Brussels sprouts and bacon-and-red-pepper jam. Open Monday to Saturday, 7-10:30 a.m., for breakfast; 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., for lunch; 2:30-5:30 p.m., for light fare; 5:30-9 p.m., for dinner. Open Sunday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., for brunch; 5:30-9 p.m., for dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc, DC • 301 L’Auberge Lane at L’Auberge de Sedona Resort (928-282-1661) (Moderate to Very Expensive)

HP Cafe

In 1930, Sedona’s first full-service restaurant, the Hitching Post, began serving hungry residents and travelers in Uptown. Now going by the name HP Cafe, the restaurant has a creative menu that focuses on house-cut meats, fresh seafood and local produce. As soon as we opened our menus, one appetizer practically jumped off the pages: Ultimate Cheesy Toast. A locally made, lighter-than-air baguette is topped with havarti, white cheddar, Reggiano and aged smoked cheddar cheeses and then baked. As the name implies, it is the ultimate starter dish. For dinner, we were impressed with the HP Signature Fried Catfish. Flown in daily from New Orleans, the catfish is flash-fried so its buttermilk-panko-cilantro batter is crispy and hot. Four pieces of fish are served on top of green-chili grits and topped with Napa cabbage slaw. We also recommend the flavorful Braised Short Rib Ravioli. And though we contented ourselves with cool glasses of prickly pear iced tea, it’s worth noting that the café has a sophisticated selection of microwbrews and wine. Open daily, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., for breakfast, lunch and dinner. MC, Visa • 269 N. AZ-89A (928-282-7761) (Inexpensive to Expensive)

L’Auberge Restaurant on Oak Creek

World-famous L’Auberge de Sedona has a creek-side restaurant and outdoor patio for dining right on the water. For dinner, we selected the chef’s tasting menu, which included ahi tuna sashimi placed atop a dollop of chilled mango-pineapple soup; a tiny puff-pastry-encased pan-seared foie gras; a mild and pleasant grouper; and braised short ribs in an herb demiglace. The evening ended with a mocha-chai panna cotta, a caramel-infused creamy pudding flavored with chocolate mocha and chai spices. Open Monday to Saturday, 7-10:30 a.m., for breakfast; 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., for lunch; 5:30-8 p.m., for dinner. Open Sunday, 9 a.m to 2 p.m., for brunch; 5:30-8 p.m., for dinner. Reservations required. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc, DC • 301 L’Auberge Lane at L’Auberge de Sedona Resort (928-282-1661) (Expensive to Very Expensive)

Oaxaca Restaurante & Cantina

Its authentic decor will remind you of Old Mexico, but the rooftop dining room’s picture windows overlooking 89A present a bird’s-eye view that’s unmistakably modern-day Sedona. The owner takes great pride in using the purest ingredients, ensuring health-conscious diners tasty options for genuine south­western and Mexican fare. Patio dining available. Open Monday through Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., for lunch and dinner. Open Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., for breakfast, lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 321 AZ-89A (928-282-4179) (Moderate)

Open Range Grille & Tavern

Whether you sit at a table in the cowboy-themed dining room or outdoors on the patio, you’ll  have to force yourself to peel your eyes away from the red rocks long enough to study the menu. The Kale and Salmon Salad immediately caught our attention. The salad features chopped kale, Bing cherries, peanuts, almonds, feta and a dusting of quinoa. It’s tossed with a tangy cilantro-lime vinaigrette and then topped with a substantial salmon fillet. We also ordered the 7-ounce Top Sirloin steak. Open Range takes pride in using Arizona-grown, hormone-free, antibiotic-free, all-natural, never-frozen beef, and it shows. The steak was juicy, flavorful and incredibly tender. It was served with steamed green beans and carrots, and though it usually comes with mashed potatoes, we’d heard good things about the restaurant’s cooked-in-soybean-oil French fries, so we requested a substitution, which paid off.  If you are a meat-and-potatoes type of diner, this is your entrée. Open daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 320 N. AZ-89A at Sinagua Plaza at Sedona Center (928-282-0002) (Moderate to Very Expensive)


Think Southwest with a twist at this Amara Resort restaurant. We enjoy sharing a selection of snacks and appetizers such as the grilled corn in a spicy aioli sauce with cotija cheese or the deviled eggs (one of Executive Chef Massimo De Francesca’s signature dishes), which sit on a smear of grain mustard and are topped with pasilla-maple syrup and bacon-onion marmalade. If you like tacos, order the braised-lamb tostada served with smoked goat cheese, epazote and tomatillo-apple salsa. The anchiote chicken breast entrée topped with pomegranate seeds is a best-seller. It’s accompanied by a memorable cilantro-jalapeno risotto and grilled asparagus. If the weather is right, take a table outdoors by one of the fire pits. If you sit in the casual dining room, take a good look at the wall of 214 painted spoons. Open daily, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., for breakfast, lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 100 Amara Lane at Amara Resort Hotel & Spa (928-282-4828) (Inexpensive to Expensive)

Sedona Pizza Co.

Take a seat on the dog-friendly outdoor patio or indoors with a view of the wood-fired pizza oven, and enjoy a 13-inch, Neopolitan-style pizza pie. We like the Napoli Meats pizza, which is topped with sausage, soppressata, shaved fennel and San Marzano tomato sauce. The Arugula & Apple salad is large enough to share and features arugula, Granny Smith apples, candied walnuts, Gorgonzola cheese and a red wine vinaigrette. Also worth sharing is the calamari appetizer with marinara sauce and pesto aioli for dipping. Open daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 320 N. AZ-89A at Sinagua Plaza at Sedona Center (928-203-5656) (Moderate)

Sound Bites Grill

This supper-club-style restaurant offers lunch, dinner and a very affordable daily happy hour from 4 to 6 p.m. with specials on small bites such as Angus beef sliders and margarita flatbread ($6 each). Lunch is all about salads, burgers, sandwiches and entrées such as the fish tacos or braised barbecue ribs. The dinner menu features burgers, hand-cut steaks and other favorites such as Alaskan king crab legs (half a pound or a full pound), baby back ribs, pesto alfredo pasta and our choice, the Surf & Turf, which includes a 4-ounce filet mignon and a 5- to 6-ounce cold-water lobster tail with drawn butter and your choice of side (the poblano-and-sweet-potato mash gets our vote). Sound Bites offers live music five or six nights a week. Open daily, 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. (11 p.m., Friday and Saturday), for lunch and dinner. MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc 101 N. AZ-89A at The Shops at Hyatt Piñon Point (928-282-2713) (Inexpensive to Very Expensive)

Taos Cantina

People-watching is one of our favorite things to do in Uptown, and thanks to Taos Cantina, we can indulge in our pastime while relaxing under umbrellas and sipping colorful cocktails. Being chili connoisseurs, our mouths started to water when we read the description for the Chicken Chile Relleno, so we knew we had to try it. A roasted-corn-encrusted poblano pepper arrived stuffed with shredded chicken, caramelized onions, apricots, and Cotija and Monterey jack cheeses. Tangy black beans and cilantro rice with roasted corn were served on the side. Open Sunday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., for breakfast, lunch and dinner (10 p.m., Friday and Saturday). MC, Visa, AmEx, Disc • 254 AZ-89A (928-282-7200) (Moderate)

Thai Palace Uptown

Thai Palace’s interior is warm and cozy with wooden floors, a stone fireplace and leather-backed chairs. You can also choose to dine on the tranquil patio. The menu includes traditional Thai dishes that can be ordered mild or spicy as well as vegan or vegetarian. We have a weakness for fresh rolls, so that’s where our meal began. Hands down, these are some of the best fresh rolls in northern Arizona. Next we tried the Basa Crispy Fish, a mild fish lightly fried and topped with chopped mangoes, bell peppers, red onion and pineapple. We also loved the Duck Curry: large chunks of roasted duck, pineapple and, unexpectedly, tomatoes. Open daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., for lunch and dinner. Visa, MC, Disc, AmEx, Disc • 260 Van Deren Road (928-282-8424) (Moderate)

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