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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Graduation gourmet: where to eat after commencement

    From a taste of the Southwest from Old Pueblo Grille
    From a taste of the Southwest from Old Pueblo Grille

    It’s that special time when families come to town, and it’s up to you to show off Tucson. Perhaps your normal food choices aren’t up to the standards of your parents (Jack in the Box, anyone?) and so you’re looking for a fancier venue to celebrate commencement and stuff yourselves silly. Here are three top choices for classier eating out.

    Old Pueblo Grille, 60 N. Alvernon Way

    The best of the Southwest, Old Pueblo Grille offers a mixture of upscale Mexican food and American favorites like steak, pot roasts and fish dishes. The Grille is a safe bet for pleasing the folks, even if you are unsure of their tastes. There is a flavor for everyone on this inventive menu.

    The Grille also has a reputation as a tequila paradise, featuring more than 80 types and many styles of margaritas: perfect for toasting your graduation. There is a scenic patio with seating if you are lucky enough to find space; otherwise, the inside is classy, with room for large parties but an intimate atmosphere.

    Recommended selections:

    Flame Grilled Fajitas, with steak or chicken, will turn heads as they are served.

    Arizona Spiced Flat Iron Steak, served with pepper jack macaroni and cheese.

    Prices range from $14-20.

    Bangkok Cafe, 2511 E. Speedway Blvd.

    Tour the tastes of Thailand at this cozy restaurant that caters to fans of Asian food, including curry, noodles and specialty rice dishes. With bamboo furniture and Asian decorations, this restaurant feels like a pleasant change from your average dining choices. You can even order fresh juice, served in a coconut to complete a tropical experience.

    The Bangkok Cafe allows you to adapt a dish to your own tastes by choosing among chicken, beef or shrimp, as well as deciding how spicy it will be. What works well is to order a selection of dishes and share them with a small group of family and friends.

    Recommended selections:

    Kang Ped, red curry with bamboo and coconut milk, for more than just pandas.

    Khao Pad Sap-pa-rod, pineapple fried rice with shrimp, chicken and cashews

    Prices range from $8-15.

    Caruso’s Restaurant, 434 N. Fourth Ave.

    This friendly and romantic restaurant is Tucson’s little piece of Italy, conveniently close to campus. The sweet red-and-white checkered tablecloths and colorful outside lighting make Caruso’s a wonderful place to celebrate any occasion. And who doesn’t love Italian, when you can choose from a wide selection of pizzas, pastas and desserts? After the meal, you can even show your family what Tucson nightlife is like!

    Recommended selections:

    The Caruso Special, a combination of spaghetti, meatballs and ravioli.

    Caruso Spectacular Pizza, with cheese, olives, mushrooms and sausage.

    Prices range from $9-15.

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