Historic Restaurants of Tucson…hot off the press

Well, folks here it is….


Publisher: The History Press
Date: 02/12/2018
Tucson’s culinary journey began thousands of years ago, when Native American tribes developed an agricultural base along the Santa Cruz River. In modern times, restaurants ranging from tiny taquerias to fine dining spaces all contributed to the local food culture. El Charro, serving Mexican cuisine since 1922, still attracts crowds from all over. Folks head straight to Pat’s for a hot dog, Lucky Wishbone for some fried chicken or eegee’s for a grinder and a cold, frosty drink. On any given night, the patio at El Corral is filled with diners anticipating their famous prime rib and tamale pie. Local food writer Rita Connelly brings to life the stories of beloved eateries that have endured for decades and continue to delight with incredible flavors.

Rita Connelly has lived in Tucson since 1979 with her husband, John, and daughter, Riene. Somewhere in her travels, she earned a BA in education from the University of Arizona. She worked as a restaurant reviewer for the Tucson Weekly for ten years. During that time, she acted as a judge for hot dog, wine, tequila, salsa, chocolate and pie competitions. Her book, Lost Restaurants of Tucson, was published in 2015. She chronicles her food adventures in her blog, thewellfedfoodieblog@wordpress.com.

Rita will be on the Buckmaster Show on KVOI – The Voice 1030AM on Tuesday 2/13 around 12:30 pm and on Morning Blend on KGUN Channel 9 on Friday sometime after 11:00 am



Sunday February 18. 2018


El Charro Cafe Downtown

Book Signing


Saturday, February 24, 2018


Mostly Books

6208 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712


Friday March 2, 2018


Trail Dust Town

6541 E Tanque Verde Rd, Tucson, AZ 85715


Friday March 9, 2018


Antigone Books

411 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705


Sunday March 11

Tucson Festival of Books

11:30 – Mini meet the author talk

2:00 book Signing and saleshistoriccover

Nacho, Nacho, Nacho

On Friday, as a kickoff to the Nova Home Loans Arizona Bowl, there was a most fitting tailgate party on the University of Arizona Mall. The Nacho Average Tailgate Party  offered a nice assortment of the popular snack without any of that day-glo cheese in sight.  Not only was the event a party, it was a competition.

A handful of  restaurants and other food establishments created a wild assortment of tasty nachos. Pork nachos, beef nachos, chicken nachos, tuna nachos, black bean nachos, cinnamon sugar nachos, you name it, were all there for the tasting.  No two were alike. There was Asian influence nachos and sweet nachos. Chiles of every ilk could be found and Modelo Beer was a sponsor so there was plenty of beer to accompany all those flavors.

My fave was the pulled pork nachos from Brushfire BBQ with its full-flavored cheese sauce, perfectly prepped pulled pork and a cloud of candied bacon. brushfire

Lindy’s on 4th won the whole shebang. They had two types and I’m not sure if the sweet cinnamon and chocolate nachos won or if the black bean nachos won the prize. lindys-with-black-beans

Another treat was El Charro Steakhouse‘s poke nacho. ahipoke-elcharro-steakThe textures and flavors were in perfect balance. All three El Charro restaurants were represented. Sir Veza’s Taco Garage  had carnitas nachos and El Charro had spicy chicken nachos.

Other representatives were: El Gorrionelgorrion Horseshoe Grill,  horseshoe-grillJohnny Gibson’s Downtown Market, johnnygibsonsdowntown-marketHifalutin‘, hifalitin-with-mango-salsaarmandoduarteasianporkArmando Duarte Catering and Mouth of the South Salsa.muthofthe-south

I didn’t stay long but by time i left the crowds were pouring in. I left beyond satisfied. Thank you Matt Russell and Russell Communications.

Tucson 23

In spite of 100° plus temperatures, Tucsonans still find a way to celebrate food and drink.

This Saturday is a prime example. Visit Tucson, Tucson’s convention and visitors bureau is partnering with Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance to present The Tucson 23 Mexican Food Festival. Based on an article my friend Edie Jarolim wrote for Visit Tucson called ‘The Best 23 Miles of Mexican Food in America’.corn smut tacos

SAACA honors arts and culture through a wide variety of year round events. They feel food is an art, as well.

Visit Tucson celebrate Tucson is so many ways and is a perfect source to find out all that is happening in town whether you are a visitor or a local.

corn smut chile relleno Elvira's

The event will be held at the JW Marriott Star Pass Resort and Spa and will have food from over 20 restaurants, food trucks and bakeries. The menu is tantalizing; tacos, tamales. Grilled shrimp, grilled pork, pan dulce, ceviche, carnitas e mas.DSCN1025

Libations include everything from raspados (Mexican sno-cones) to Mexican beers to fermented tea to American vodka and an assortment of tequilas.

Entertainment includes mariachis and folklorico dancers. There is a full day of events but I’m just going for the food….

Blanco Tacos & Tequila
Boca Tacos y Tequila

Calle Tepa
Crossroads Cafe
Dish for Dosha
El Charro Cafe
El Cisne
Gringo Grill + Cantina
La Estrella Bakery
La Indita
La Fresita
La Parilla Suiza
Leo’s Mexican Food
Marisco’s Chihuahua
Molina’s Midway Restaurant
Pasco Kitchen & Lounge
Rigos Restaurant
Reforma Cocina y Cantina
Seis Kitchen and Catering
Taco Giro
Sonoran Sno Cones
Tequila Factory at the Casino del Sol Resort

Dos Equis Amber
Dos Equis Lager
Roger Clyne’s Mexican Moonshine
Sonoran Sno-Cones*
Tecate Michelado Diablo

Tito’s Vodka
Fermented Tea Company


I can’t wait!’

Tacos, Tacos, Tacos

Oh, that Tucson Foodie!

During the entire month of May, Tucson Foodie (aka Adam Lehrman) and media sponsors Zocolo and Edible Baja Arizona magazines, are sponsoring a new event in town called Taco de Mayo.

All you have to do is eat at one of the participating restaurants, snap a pic, enter with your Instagram account  with the hashtag, #TacoDeMayo2015 and you could win a seat on the Grey Line tour of the three top Instagramed (is there such a word?) restaurants. The tour is on June 15 and The Tucson Foodie will be aboard. You can enter with every restaurant if you want (now that’s a challenge).

Go to the Tucson Foodie website for more details.


Visit these killer Taco Hot Spots:

  1. Blanco Tacos + Tequila
  2. BOCA Taco Y Tequila
  3. El Charro
  4. Fini’s Landing
  5. Gringo Grill & Cantina
  6. Lerua’s Fine Mexican Foods
  7. Maico Restaurant
  8. Reforma Cocina Y Cantina
  9. Seis Kitchen
  10. Sir Veza’s Taco Garage (either Tucson location)
  11. Street Taco + Beer