Phoenix Restaurant Review

The Sonora Brewhouse is the epitome of a good, clean, moderate, Phoenician pub/restaurant. Which means that I was really hoping for more. I was hoping that this place would be a little lived in, a little less polished, a little less new Phoenix. It’s kind of odd that big box chain food spots work at trying to get that aged look by throwing junk up on the walls and hanging it from the ceilings. Not at the Sonora Brewhouse, they’ll have none of that here, but that’s okay.

Yes, they brew their own beers and yes it’s good and more than decent. The food is better than average and always cooked. Even when you ask for your Kobe burger to be cooked medium with the hope that you’ll see some red, it’ll come out with no pink at all. Sadly, I wasn’t expecting anything different.

Do I sound disappointed? Do I sound like I’m sitting in a box of self pity? Oh woe is me, they FULLY cooked my burger. Oh woe is me, the beer is good and the steak fries have the perfect crispness on the outside and mashy-goodness on the inside. The quality at Sonora Brewhouse is what I expect at any of the big box chain restaurants like Gordon Biersch, but never get. The problem here is that they can be so much more. Food + Ambiance (personality) = Greatness. Sonora Brewhouse is missing the heart.

They’re polite and not offensive in anyway, walking the definition of middle.

This is both surprising and disappointing since they have been around for a while, but also because just a block to the east, Rosie McCaffrey’s is overflowing with heart and soul, more than you can imagine. If they can find it, tourists probably love Sonora, but remember, tourists often love going to another branch of the same TGI Friday’s that they have in their own suburbia, while on vacation in a different town.

Okay, so Sonora Brewhouse isn’t anywhere near the low level of a TGI Friday’s, but it’s almost as clean, boring, and devoid of personality, being almost completely unmemorable. Oh. They also probably have the thinnest Kobe burger patties I’ve ever seen, at least the steak fries and beer are good. My advice? Go a block east to Rosie McCaffrey’s and actually have a good time worth remembering.