Posted on November 6, 2013
The Keeper – From the creators of Fretzy’s Unfiltered Ale, and the people that brought you…pizza.
When the Phoenix Ale Brewery and NYPD Pizza hold an event offering free beer, free pizza, and free swag, you don’t ask questions, you just go. On October 17th, they held a launch party to celebrate their new beer collaboration “The Keeper”, a beer made specifically for NYPD Pizza locations. They were nice enough to put us on the list for the small, invitation-only gathering (which we appreciate as fat, poor drunks).
NYPD Pizza CEO Rich Stark was on-hand to tell a little back-story about The Keeper; the story goes that NYPD Pizza approached the Phoenix Ale Brewery to make a beer that would pair perfectly with a meat pizza. While trying to brew a few batches to find the right combination of flavors that would go hand in hand with all that pepperoni, cheese, crust and sauce, they took a sip of one particular brew and declared, “Yup, that’s a keeper.”
Posted on September 6, 2012
Chandler, Reviews |
I assume the “ATL” stands for “Peace up, A-Town…Lown”
Have you ever turned on one of those techno or dubstep stations on Pandora, listened for a while, and then stopped paying attention until an hour later when it finally dawned on you that it wasn’t actually one hour long song, it was several similar songs with not much variation between them? What happens is you get lost in the repetitive and almost monotonous rhythms until something stands out to you, something different and not so full of wub-wubz and fax machine sounds. It’s a breath of fresh air because it’s in the same category, it has many of the same attributes, but it approaches the art form from a different viewpoint and ends up being far more memorable for how it does things than what it does.
Also, it wasn’t made by a guy that looks like a mop.
“wub wub wub wub wuuuuuuuub” – Skrillex
Posted on August 9, 2012
Reviews, Tempe |
Photo Credit: gotime.com
[Note: This review is for the Rural & Elliott Vine location, though we also visited the Apache location and found the wings and beer to be identical and the atmosphere to be more bro-tastic. If college is your thing, do the Apache location. If Happy Hour is your thing, do the Elliott location. If you’re not in AZ…why the hell are you reading this?
You just can’t go wrong with the classics…unless of course the classics actually suck and you’re just letting nostalgia blind you. Such is the case with things like the 80’s GI Joe cartoons, the Howard the Duck movie, Ecto-Cooler (fuck you, it’s slime), sugar sandwiches, the two rap songs on the Beavis and Butthead Do America soundtrack and a million other things I loved as a younger person that ended up being fairly shitty once I grew up and looked back at them.
Before we were Phoenix Wing Crusaders on a mission, we were just fat schlubs eating wings wherever we could get them. Granted, we’re still just fat schlubs eating wings, but that’s beside the point. The point is, The Vine was one of the few places we ate at (pre-WhyDidIEatThis.com) that I still had fond memories of, and I was terrified of going back there and finding out it wasn’t how I remembered.
Posted on August 2, 2012
Phoenix, Reviews |
In the three weeks preceding our visit to CK’s Tavern and Grill in Ahwatukee we were having wings from Half Moon, Arcadia Tavern, and Rino D’s. Three weeks in a row of forgettable, mediocre wings. Spoiler alert: CK’s brought that to a total of four weeks in a row.
Four fucking weeks in some kind of hot wing purgatory. After all the excellent places we had been to in the past this quality hot wing drought was kicking my ass. All we wanted were some great hot wings and some good, cheap beer. CK’s delivered on the latter but our quest for superb wings had ended in failure again.
The thing is that the wings were not even actually all that bad. They were nothing special about them but I remember thinking at the time they were pretty solid. Now I just remember them as mediocre. Maybe it is just me. Maybe solid hot wings just don’t cut it anymore. Maybe I have reached a whole new level of wing-snobbery. I don’t know.
Posted on July 26, 2012
Phoenix, Reviews |
Their logo designer failed astronomy.
If you listen to the radio at any time on any given day, you’ll notice two things: One, you’ll notice that it’s awful. Two, you’ll hear a Maroon 5 song. It’s inescapable, you ARE going to hear one. If you ever turn on the radio and flip around and don’t hear one, you can take it as a sign of the impending apocalypse. One can recognize them by the incredibly shitty falsetto of the lead singer and the completely dull and unmemorable nature of the song. For some reason, people love this lifeless crap and for the life of me I can’t understand why.
After leaving Half Moon, I realized that this phenomenon of people loving dull things is not limited to music alone.
I went once and was not impressed, but that was years ago. It could have been the prices, or it could have been the coiffed-hair touting mid-30s fellows lounging in there (not quite Affliction bros,they were more of the 401K and stocks-talk variety ) which doesn’t really jive with my style, because I am fat and eat hot wings. Plus, I didn’t even go into the bar that night, I went to the sit-down restaurant portion of Half Moon which seemed to be half sports bar, half contemporary ski lodge. (more…)
Posted on July 19, 2012
Phoenix, Reviews |
We headed down to Arcadia for a second time to check out another wing joint that happens to be almost right next door to the last Arcadia place we visited, JT’s Bar & Grill. This is almost unfair to Arcadia Tavern because it just invites the comparison between the two and JT’s happens to be one of our favorite spots so far, currently ranking third behind only NY Boyz and Angie & Jimmy’s. We didn’t set out to just compare the two places though so we tried to be objective (sort of).
Arcardia Tavern lives up to its namesake neighborhood. The place looks nice and is situated in the prime corner spot. Parking was a little tricky which seems to be the norm around there. Really just not enough parking for all of their patrons. We lucked into a spot as someone was leaving so it didn’t turn out too bad.
We grabbed a couple spots on the patio to enjoy the decent weather outside (in February – suck it, cold states) and watch the Suns take on Dragic and the Rockets. Little did we know there was an awful University of Arizona flag looming over our heads at this table. That has to be some kind of bad luck. Now, the logical part of me has always argued that U of A is not so bad because more higher education and better educated people in general are good for our state but on the other hand, fuck U of A. I’m from the Valley of the Sun, go ASU!
Posted on April 7, 2012
Phoenix, Reviews |
This week’s wing adventure took us to Arcadia to check out JT’s Bar & Grill. JT’s had an excellent reputation going in. It was the winner of New Times Best Of Phoenix for the Best Bar Food in 2011 and Best Neighborhood Bar, Central Phoenix in 2010. They also had a shitload of raving reviews online. So, it was time to put their hot wings to the test. We were of course skeptical because most people don’t know shit about wings.
This place is in a run down strip mall that looks like it has weathered one too many Arizona summers. In picturesque Arcadia this place stuck out like a pimple on a model’s ass. Being that we had had excellent wings at some pretty bad dives before, things were looking good for us so far.
Parking was a little tight. We found a spot easily enough but I could definitely could see it becoming a problem if it got too busy at JT’s or if the citizens of Arcadia ever start campaigning in the parking lot to tear down this blight on the community of a strip mall.
Posted on April 4, 2012
Phoenix, Reviews |
Not pictured: Homeless Mascot
I remember it drizzling the night we made the trek all the way to Glendale, far out of our cushy east valley snobbery (just kidding, I live in Mesa. I am above NO ONE) to visit Angie & Jimmy’s. I remember traffic being heavy on the I-17, Phoenix’s ugliest freeway. I remember that Google Maps told me this place was across the street from a Pro’s Ranch Market and across the street from a dive bar that would put most dive bars to shame. I remember the lack of signage on the restaurant’s front and I remember the dubious placing between a convenience store with no gas pumps and an adult boutique that I assume had several “pumps” of various natures.
I remember a lot of things about the night we went to Angie & Jimmy’s Italian Pizza, but somehow the thing that stands above all of those memories is the taste, texture and smell of their wings, because they were PHENOMENAL.
In a previous review, I mentioned that Buffalo Brown’s Wings & Things was a shithole of a dive, and boy did I mean it, but Angie & Jimmy’s may have them beat for sheer shit-tasticness. Look, this place doesn’t even have the name of the place on the sign out front. It just says “PIZZA”. Had we not already read from other reviews that this place is hard to find, I would have driven right past it, slammed on my brakes, skidded from the rain, rear-ended some ese’s sweet ’94 Caprice and then had to fight Lil Joker and eventually take a bullet for Tyler so his child wouldn’t grow up fatherless and alone and scared to buy burritos because a Mexican murdered her father right in front of “PIZZA” and a porn shop. So for the love of all that is holy and delicious, CHANGE YOUR GOD DAMNED SIGN, A&J’S. I’ll start a petition if I have to, damnit. (more…)
Posted on February 27, 2012
Phoenix, Reviews |
Oh, there was a cold chill in the air indeed.
It was the middle of November, though in Phoenix that only means it’s time to think about switching to jeans from shorts to complement your ensemble of a t-shirt and nothing else, and it was time for our weekly outing to wing night. The one difference: My wife wanted to come along with us to Rosie McCaffrey’s. Damnation. I agreed, on the condition that she neither speak nor look any man directly in the eyes, and I told her she could order one item off the menu under $7 but it better not be a damn salad. When she agreed, I lowered my fist away from her face and told her we’d be happy to have her!
I’m kidding, of course, and my wife is awesome, though it was a little weird to have a woman with us since it was normally two guys with 24 wings and countless beers that made up our wing Thursdays. But we pressed on because there were wings to be devoured, damn it, and because after eating at a string of good to great wing places, we were almost looking for a letdown.
We didn’t find that letdown here.
Rosie McCaffrey’s is an Irish pub in central Phoenix with a fairly loyal fanbase of folks who swear by its brand of UK flair, and for good reason. While the place is kitschy in its whole “Hey, we’re another Irish pub in America that is far far away from Ireland and there’s no way for you to verify the authenticity of a place like this!” appeal, it never feels like they’re pandering to you. It’s not like they’ve got shamrock-shaped plates and refer to their hamburgers as hamburger “paddys”, and the servers don’t have to call themselves McShannon or O’Tiffany. The place has a vibe that seems like a mixture of regulars and wanderers alike that are all welcomed into a well-worn but not-quite-dive bar.
Posted on January 11, 2012
Phoenix, Reviews |
Not even joking.
The first thing I want to discuss is this: I know where the “Wings”portion of the name of “Buffalo Browns Wings & Things” comes from. I get that.
But after seeing how immense of a dive this place is, I’m still slight wary that whatever the “Things” in the name are, I could have taken them home with me if I’d have sat down on a toilet seat there. I really don’t want to ask questions as to what the “Things” specifically are, I’m just glad I’m not one of those people that needs a restaurant to be immaculate.
I honestly don’t even need a place to be clean. I don’t even need it to be “sanitary”, per se, because I grew up in the ghetto and I’ll be damned if I didn’t ingest far worse by matter of consequence as a child. Roaches are my friends, dirt never hurt, and kill whitey…that was our motto. And really, thank Jeebus I don’t care because Buffalo Brown’s was the opposite of swank. I mean, there was a pool table in the back that looked like it was there more for storage than to actually be played, and the hand dryer in the bathroom had an actual external cord and was plugged into a wall outlet.