Stop, sandwich time! This month's list of new Tucson restaurants includes a lotta lunch spots that'll get you out of the office and into the fresh, hot air.
You may have heard of Prep & Pastry's new sandwich joint August Rhodes Market, inside the original Prep space on Campbell. They've made the place so cute that it almost hurts, so make sure to take your flower wallpaper selfie before you devour the grinder. (It's big.)
Another secondary concept we've got here is Toro Loco, the fast-casual burrito joint by the Serial Grillers bros. Their Instagram game is pretty on point as well: Loving the bull mascot, which looks like it's stripped from a Picasso painting. But in a dark twist of fate that reminds me more of a Goya painting, the burritos all have French fries in them. Wah!
If this list doesn't float your boat, read through to the bottom and you'll see another, yet shorter, list of upcoming restaurants. Who wants to go to the Turkish place with me?! Seriously, be my friend! 🤪
August Rhodes Market
Prep & Pastry may have moved down the street, but the owners quickly turned the original space into a trendy lunch spot. Named after chef Kyle Nottingham's son, August Rhodes Market specializes in gourmet salads and sandwiches on housemade baguettes. We it up this week to try out the menu, and got to try everything from a vegan hummus and eggplant sandwich to a thinly-sliced tri tip dip stuffed with poblano pepper. The panzanella salad was also a hit; slightly warmed with focaccia croutons on top of cucumbers and juicy cherry tomatoes.
Hours: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily
Brooklyn native John Ryan is bringing New York deli to the campus area through his restaurant Brooklyn Rolls. The menu here is a little bit Jewish and a little bit Italian, with bagels and bialys as well as heroes and other sandwiches like housemade corned beef and pastrami. There's also a deli counter full of Italian pastries, plus classic New York egg creams to drink! Ryan is still waiting for his liquor license, but expects to be open for dinner as well starting Sept. 1. Read more.
Hours: 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily until September, when they will be open until 10 p.m.
Black Standard Coffee
Check out this new coffee subscription business owned by Tucson couple Jason and Rachel Kish. Black Standard Coffee is a direct-trade business that purchases their beans through "farm gate," which means that the buyer negotiates directly with the coffee farmer. They sell their freshly-roasted beans wholesale, through subscription or by the bag on their website blackstandardcoffee.com. You might start by purchasing a sampler pack for $20. It comes with 4 ounce packs of Brazilian, Ethiopian, Guatemalan and a signature Espresso blend.
Toro Loco: Tacos y Burros
The folks behind the wildly popular Serial Grillers pizza are making a foray into Mexican food with the new Toro Loco. The east-side shop is actually more like a burrito spot you'd find in San Diego than in Tucson. French-fry stuffed gut bombs like California burrito take up a big part of the menu. They also have something glorious called the fried chicken taco, which features chicken fried in a puffy tempura batter jalapeño ranch and pickled onions. Move over Chipotle! Read more.
Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily
A country music nightclub housed in the remnants of an old Macaroni Grill? You can't get much more Tucson than that. 😆 Whiskey Roads is owned by the team behind Putney's sports bar on Oracle and Rudasill. The business is part performance space and part restaurant, with bar foods like spare-rib nachos and fried zucchini on the menu. But there's also a full dinner menu with $14 burgers and substantial entrees like ribeye steaks and salmon. Read more.
Hours: Tuesday through Sunday 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., closed Monday
On the horizon
• A new Turkish restaurant Istanbul is set to open its doors August 13, it recently announced on Facebook.
• A new bar called John Henry's is expected to open this October in the downtown space that once held the comic book gallery Constant Con, writes The Star's Gerald M Gay.
• A new chain called The Dapper Doughnut is opening its first Tucson location at First Avenue and Roger Road, writes The Star's Gabriela Rico. It specializes in mini doughnuts with flavors like blueberry lemon and s'mores.
• On the other end of the doughnut spectrum, San Diego-based Donut Bar has put up signs in the downtown space next door to Miss Saigon. Donut Bar makes oversized doughnuts with funky combinations like the French toast and grilled cheese doughnut.
— with reporting from Cathalena E. Burch