Perfect Patios: Tonto Bar and Grill in Cave Creek

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Posted By on October 21, 2020
Photo courtesy of Patrick Corley

Tonto Bar and Grill opened in Cave Creek in 1994 and continues to impress diners with its spectacular scenery, friendly service and delicious dishes that celebrate Southwestern and Native American ingredients.

“The atmosphere is iconic Arizona,” said owner John Malcolm. “There’s nothing better than dining on one of our patios overlooking the Rancho Mañana golf course’s 11th hole and the looming southern rim of the Tonto National Forest.”

Tonto Bar and Grill showcases its surroundings with three outdoor areas, including a covered patio that can be made cooler during the summer and can be enclosed and heated in the winter. It also boasts a dog-friendly patio with a wood-burning fireplace and a small stage for live music.

Tonto’s menu has evolved over the years to include gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan items, and there are several longtime favorites. “We have many items that have been on the menu from day one,” said Malcolm. “Our most popular include the corn chowder, the Tonto Burger, walleye pike, schnitzel and our lemon-lime prickly pear meringue tart. The Tontorita is a mainstay for tequila lovers with our unique handcrafted mix.”

Like all other restaurants, the pandemic has been extremely challenging for Tonto and its staff. “It hit right at the beginning of our busy season,” said Malcolm. “We had to adjust, just like everyone else. We offered to-go menus, curbside pickup and a pantry with everyday items that guests could purchase. You find that you will do whatever it takes to keep your business alive.”

Tonto Bar and Grill is open daily for lunch and dinner with happy hour from 2:30-5:30 p.m.

Shoshana Leon

About Shoshana Leon

Shoshana Leon is a culinary writer for Frontdoors Media and creator of Foodie Fo Sho.