What becomes of a closed down car wash in a very desirable Valley location? It becomes an adorable restaurant. NoRTH Arcadia is now open near 40th Street and Camelback. The newest location is brought to you courtesy of Sam Fox.
Prior to the grand opening in early November, Amy and I were invited for a test drive of sorts and we even had the opportunity to bring along our family, a rare and lovely treat. You would never imagine that this location was previously a hand car wash. It has been transformed into a charming eatery reminiscent of a farmhouse, which carried through to the open kitchen area as well as the washrooms. The wait staff are decked out in plaid shirts to fully complete the aesthetic.
We were greeted with complimentary valet service and were then quickly escorted to our table. I loved that not all the tables were identical and the light fixtures were a thing of beauty. I actually got to get in a history lesson with my son before our food was served, courtesy of the gorgeous Edison light fixtures. Our server, Anzi, was very enthusiastic and I have to say, that adds a great deal to my dining experience. It’s akin to when you speak with a Chef and see that flicker in their eyes when they speak of their food. Anzi was quick with suggestions and recommendations, and we all adored her for it. She was engaging with my son as well as Amy’s daughter – and that’s a surefire way to win over a momma!
On to the food! We chose to share the Bread & Cheese Plate ($11) for our Antipasti selection. This comes with rustic garlic bread, warm Italian cheese and a lovely tomato ‘jam.’ Far and away a huge hit at our table and a great way to start a meal.
Since I couldn’t decide between the Heirloom Beet Salad ($11) and the Ricotta Gnocchi ($18), Anzi suggested that I order both! Love that gal! The Heirloom Beet Salad comes with beets, of course, as well as arugula, apple, hazelnuts, ricotta salata and lemon creme fraiche. Our Bitecation to Sedona was the beginning of my intense love for beets. Ever since then whenever I see them on a menu when out and about my mouth starts to water and I just cannot help myself. This dish did not disappoint. The hazelnuts added a great texture and flavor and the contrast of the apples and the lemon creme fraiche was delightful. The beets were incredibly tender and were extremely fresh.
The Ricotta Gnocchi was heaven on a plate and was an amazing selection for breakfast or brunch as well as lunch or dinner. The gnocchi is served atop beef short ribs, arugula, horseradish cream and bread crumbs.
The gnocchi itself was so light, creamy and slightly sweet, which paired perfectly with the short ribs which were just the right amount of salty creating a harmonious balance and delightful finish. My son, age 6 and a half, ordered the Granola Parfait ($5.50) made with local honey, Greek yogurt and dried cranberries. Not feeling in an adjective heave mood that day all he could muster between bites was that it was very, very good! He made sure to not eat all of it so that he would have ample room for dessert, a must of course for any growing boy!!
Amy and her family opted for breakfast selections as entrée courses. Read her comments below:
Amy: First off, that Bread & Cheese Plate was to die for! I’ve craved this every day since our last visit and it certainly won’t be my last. The warm cheese had a bit of smokiness that lured me in… and that tomato jam? OMG. Delicious. Because it was the weekend and time to let my hair down, I started “breakfast” with a drinkable treat off of the cocktail menu – the Stray Dog ($9) made with Plymouth Gin, aperol, St. Germain, Campari, and fresh grapefruit, really a lovely refreshment. For entrees, I tasted the Fried Egg Sandwich ($9), because for me, there’s nothing more comforting that a warm, gooey fried egg sandwich in the mornings. The sandwich is topped with applewood smoked bacon, Campari tomato, and fontina cheese. From the bread to the bacon to the perfectly cooked egg, I had no complaints. A step up from the traditional morning egg sandwich. On the side sat a tempting dish of Crispy Potatoes which were just as addictive as the sandwich. I also tasted the Pork Belly & Eggs ($10), sweet-glazed pork belly with grilled bread, eggs cooked your way, and a side of crispy potatoes. The pork belly was (surprisingly) somewhat leaner than dishes I’ve had at other Valley restaurants, which made for a ‘less-gluttonous’ breakfast plate than its name might assume. All that being said, stealing a bite of Taryn’s Ricotta Gnocchi made this dish rise to the top of my list! Absolutely delicious. Next time I visit NoRTH, I’ll make sure I’m hungry for lunch so I can claim a plate of this all for myself.
When it was time, my son and I had a hard time determining if we should choose the Bombolini ($6) or the Warm Fall Apple ($6). When Anzi arrived back at our table to find what we had chosen we shared with her our conundrum and asked which she would prefer. We then settled on the Warm Fall Apple – but when the food was delivered to our table we were presented with both. (Again – much love for Anzi!) The Bombolini, which are delectable Italian doughnuts, were served with a Meyer lemon curd and a vanilla mascarpone.
The Warm Fall Apple was sinful, like an old fashioned apple cobbler with a hazelnut and marcona almond crumble with a cortino gelato. It was hard to pick a favorite between the two – while very different they were both very good without being overly sweet. My son would say that the Bombolini were his favorite and I would certainly pick them again as well as the Warm Fall Apple. There is a comfort that comes with that dessert – like being at your Grandmother’s table close to the window so you can see the first snow falling.
Amy chose the “Affogato” ($6) for her dessert, comprised of coffee crème, warm nutella cake, and vanilla gelato which she deemed as “sinful and incredibly rich; each bite even better than the previous.”
There is a lot of charm in this place and the food and service was first-rate. The restaurant was busy on the day that we visited, the sound of laughter bounced around the space, and the happy faces from corner to corner assured me that this will be a very successful addition to the FRC family. Despite the drive to Arcadia, I am sure to be back as often as possible. We encourage you to give them a try and share with us your experience!
NoRTH in Arcadia is located at 4925 N. 40th St., Phoenix, AZ, 85018. The restaurant is now open to the public and serves lunch, dinner and a full bar seven days a week, plus weekend breakfast.
For more information about NoRTH Arcadia, or to view the menu, visit foxrc.com.
*This meal was provided to us complimentary as a part of a media invitation. However, this has no effect on our opinions and comments regarding our experience. View our Disclosure Policy for further explanation.