We went to Arizona State University, where the hangovers are abound and the sports are…uhh…lackluster. Our love for Tempe is unshakable.
You’ve got pool parties into mid-November. You’ve got swarms of beautiful people, flocking from hellholes like New Jersey. You’ve got a river of study stimulants rivaling the Ganges.
There’s one aspect of Tempe, though, we feel doesn’t get as much notoriety as it should; the sheer amount of scrumptious local eateries confined to only a few square miles.
Sure – Chipotle chicken burritos, Chick-Fil-A sandwiches, and Cane’s box combos are pretty darn tasty. Sheesh y’all really do like chicken.
But how can you go five years (yes – we said five – stop droppin’ them classes, cuh) without venturing out of your culinary comfort zones every now and again?
We’re here to plug a few of our go-to Tempe food spots. Claiming you’re a tried-and-true Tempe foodie without even a nibble at these joints is one word: pathetic. Let’s get grubbing.
Cemented amidst the ever-growing metropolis of College Avenue, Paradise is a testament to hard work and tasty food. Inside, you’re engulfed in a fast-paced, street-food style atmosphere, where an array of treats are laid-out and scooped-up onto styrofoam dishes per your palette.
We opted for the chicken teriyaki, with generous servings of rice, corn, steamed veggies, and rice noodles. Plan to parse your heaping plate into two meals or you’re gonna be slumped. We, obviously, ate it all very quickly…but that desk-nap ain’t so bad.
This little spot is a short jaunt west of campus, tucked underneath a living complex. Be sure to lookout for the sandwich board thrown out every morning.
Los Dos Diablitos, or The Two Little Devils for those who didn’t pay attention in how to use Google translate class, is no bigger than your living room. It takes us back to the quaint bodegas of our Rocky Point spring breaks, with less booze and more confidence in the transportation services.
We snagged the tender carne asada street tacos for lunch, but they are known for their breakfast burritos. With free coffee? Start your day at Los Dos.
We’ve known about Little Szechuan, or “Lil Skezzy” as we like to call it, for a minute. Our friends at the Jewish fraternity have been plugging them for years, thanks to a penchant for Chinese on Christmas and a pu pu platter bid night tradition.
Koi fish greet you upon entry, and the sultry sounds of Sinatra fill the air while wafts of fried rice and dumplings sneak past your nostrils. To be honest, there are some heavy Jamie Lee Curtis, Lindsay Lohan vibes going on in here. But we’re more than about it.
We ordered the Mongolian beef lunch special, but we gotta say – the crunch on the crispy chicken teriyaki would make Colonel Sanders weep. Pro-tip: get off your high-horse and get dark meat for the flavor, ya digg.
Cure your alcohol-induced coma at Sacks. You’ll have to get your lazy-ass up early, though, they close at 3pm. Good news? They deliver.
We were interested in this place, seeing they name sandwiches after famous artists like “Dali” and “O’Keefe”. We liked this place, peeping the vibrant, 90’s-reminiscent decor covering the walls. We loved this place, hearing Men Without Hat’s “Safety Dance” while we sunk our teeth into their mouthwatering breakfast sammy.
ASU parking is a devilish entity that only exists to scrounge more money from already-broke students, but fear not. Sacks has an ample amount of reserved spots right outside their front door.
Our favorite pizza spot in Tempe, no questions. Next door to Atomic Comics, Otto’s has been serving up slices since the man himself moved here from France in 1992.
There is nothing better than downing a pie while you watch Otto sling fresh dough into the air. We’ve eaten our fair share of three-slice lunch specials, but they’ve got deals for every degree of hunger.
You cannot go wrong with mushroom, pepperoni and sausage slices – made fresh to order, not sitting in some grimey shelving apparatus. Otto’s is our go-to remedy when Cartel’s cold brew has us skitzin’ out on an empty stomach.
NOTE: To all you savage buffoons who throw the crust away – we promise this is some of the best end you’ve tasted (get your mind outta the gutter, sickos). Sweet, thin, and crispy with the perfect amount of pull.