The best Tapas in Phoenix: A Guide to the City’s Most Delicious Small Plates

Laura Williams

Photo by Nadja Oertlin on Unsplash

Phoenix, Arizona is a city that is known for its diverse culinary scene. From Mexican to Italian, there is no shortage of delicious food options in this city. One cuisine that has been gaining popularity in recent years is Spanish tapas. These small plates of food are perfect for sharing with friends and family, and they offer a unique and flavorful dining experience. In this article, we will explore the best tapas in Phoenix and what makes them so special.


Tapas are a type of Spanish cuisine, and there are many other cuisines that come from the same parent cuisine. One of these is Mexican cuisine, which shares many similarities with Spanish cuisine but also has its own unique flavors and ingredients. Another cuisine that is related to Spanish cuisine is Portuguese cuisine, which also features seafood and bold flavors. While these cuisines share some similarities with Spanish cuisine, they each have their own distinct characteristics that make them unique.


If you are a fan of Spanish cuisine or just looking to try something new, then you are in luck. Phoenix has some of the best tapas restaurants in the country, and we are here to guide you through them. In this article, we will highlight some of the top tapas restaurants in Phoenix and what makes them stand out. From traditional Spanish dishes to modern twists on classic favorites, there is something for everyone to enjoy. So sit back, relax, and get ready to indulge in some of the best tapas that Phoenix has to offer.

The Farish House

The Farish House - <a href="https://farishhouse.com">Photo Source</a>
The Farish House – Photo Source

816 N 3rd St Phoenix
(602) 281-6659
The Farish House Menu

The Farish House is a charming and delightful restaurant located in a historic 1899 bungalow off 3rd Street in downtown Phoenix. The restaurant offers a unique and eclectic environment that is warm and welcoming, making it perfect for any occasion. The menu is high-end French bistro, and every dish is fantastic. The flavors and combinations are unique but complement each other very well. The charcuterie board and mains are delightful, and the vegan scallops made with mushrooms are terrific. The salads are generous, and the vegetarian dishes are imaginative. The poutine with fingerling potatoes is tasty, and the fig appetizer is a must-try. The restaurant also offers a spectacular Saturday Afternoon Tea service that is simply fantastic.

The spread of four different finger sandwiches, two different scones (with clotted cream and jam), and four desserts, along with a broad tea menu, is a perfect way to spend a Saturday. The value is honestly great for what you get, and the ability to ask for more of each bite is a plus. The staff is outstanding, and the service is attentive and friendly. The atmosphere of the restaurant is very pretty, and the decor alone is intriguing. The venue is cute, and they have a live jazz band there every Wednesday and Thursday evening. The bartender is very friendly, and the other customers all seem respectful and chill. The Farish House is definitely worth a trip, and we 100% recommend it if you’re around downtown Phoenix!

Tapas Papa Frita

Tapas Papa Frita - <a href="https://www.tapaspapafrita.com">Photo Source</a>
Tapas Papa Frita – Photo Source

7114 E Stetson Dr Ste 210 Scottsdale
(480) 699-5004
Tapas Papa Frita Menu

Tapas Papa Frita is a must-visit restaurant in Scottsdale, located in the heart of the waterfront. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, perfect for a night out with friends or a romantic date night. The live music adds to the comforting ambiance, making it a great place to relax and enjoy a meal. The restaurant is also wheelchair accessible, making it easy for everyone to enjoy.

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The food at Tapas Papa Frita is simply delicious. The chef’s menu sample tapas is a great way to try a variety of dishes, and the paella is a must-try. The pork ribs with honey raisin sauce are a standout dish, and the wrapped and stuffed dates are a must-have. The flavors are unique and the portions are generous, making it a great value for the price.

While some reviewers had negative experiences with the service, the majority of reviews praise the friendly and attentive staff. The restaurant also offers live musical entertainment several days a week, adding to the overall experience.

Overall, Tapas Papa Frita is a great restaurant for any occasion. The food is delicious, the atmosphere is welcoming, and the location is perfect for a night out in Scottsdale. Don’t miss out on this slice of Barcelona in the desert.

Alma Scottsdale

Alma Scottsdale - <a href="https://almascottsdale.com">Photo Source</a>
Alma Scottsdale – Photo Source

7001 N Scottsdale Rd Ste 147 Scottsdale
(480) 687-2612
Alma Scottsdale Menu

Alma Scottsdale is a must-visit restaurant for anyone looking for a great dining experience. The atmosphere is lively and welcoming, with friendly staff who are always eager to help. The food is outstanding, with a wide variety of dishes to choose from. The lobster quesadilla and chili lime salmon are cooked to perfection, and the tacos are a must-try. The creative desserts and interesting cocktails are also worth mentioning. The decor is stylish and aesthetically pleasing, making you feel like you’re in someone’s nice home. The service is top-notch, with servers like Kyle and Eric who go above and beyond to make your experience exceptional.

Even with a few negative reviews, Alma Scottsdale is still a great restaurant to visit. The slow service and cocktails that missed the mark can be overlooked when you consider the overall experience. Don’t waste your time going anywhere else in Scottsdale, Alma Scottsdale is the place to be!

Superstition Downtown

Superstition Downtown - <a href="https://superstitionmeadery.com/superstition-downtown-phoenix/">Photo Source</a>
Superstition Downtown – Photo Source

1110 E Washington St Phoenix
(602) 368-3257
Superstition Downtown Menu

Superstition Downtown is a must-visit restaurant for anyone looking for a unique and delicious dining experience. The mead selection is unparalleled, with a wide variety of flavors to choose from. Even those who don’t typically enjoy mead will find something to love here. The food is also exceptional, with standout dishes like the pecan salad, steak sandwich, and tapas menu. Vegetarian options are available, though the menu is limited. The desserts are a must-try, especially the mead-poached pear. The staff is friendly and attentive, making for a welcoming atmosphere.

The restaurant itself is beautiful, with a relaxed and comfortable vibe. While some reviewers noted that the prices are a bit high, the quality of the food and mead make it worth it for a special night out or date. Negative reviews were mostly related to the lack of mask-wearing by staff and the limited drink options for those who don’t enjoy mead. However, these issues can be easily addressed and should not deter anyone from visiting this amazing restaurant. Overall, Superstition Downtown is a gem in the Phoenix dining scene and should not be missed.

Persepshen

Persepshen - <a href="https://www.persepshenarizona.com/explore">Photo Source</a>
Persepshen – Photo Source

4700 N Central Ave Phoenix
(602) 935-2932
Persepshen Menu

Persepshen is a hidden gem that offers a unique dining experience that is hard to come by. The menu is well thought out and features locally sourced ingredients that are scratch-made. The dishes are packed with complex flavors and unique pairings that will leave you wanting more. The crispy polenta street fries, Chinese sausage steam buns, and chicken dip are just a few of the must-try items on the menu. The escargot is a must-have, and the charcuterie board is perfect for sharing. The 270 dry-aged steak is indescribably good, and the grilled shrimp risotto is packed with complex flavors and so creamy. The NY strip is the star of the meal, served medium rare, and super flavorful. The chocolate cream pie is also a must-try, with salted caramel around the crust that adds an extra richness to die for.

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The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, and the owner Jason makes sure to stop by your table to ensure you have a great dining experience. The atmosphere is casual and relaxed, making it perfect for a Friday night out with friends or a date. The head chef and owner waited on us and made us feel at home and taken care of. The restaurant is accommodating to special requests, including vegan, vegetarian, non-dairy, and nut allergies. The combination of sweet, sour, and savory is absolutely wonderful, and the personal touches in the decor with stories and meaning the owner gladly shared make the experience even more special. Persepshen is a must-visit culinary gem that guarantees an unforgettable dining experience.

Brushfire Tacos y Tapas

Brushfire Tacos y Tapas - <a href="https://brushfiretacos.com">Photo Source</a>
Brushfire Tacos y Tapas – Photo Source

14240 N 43rd Ave Bldg 600 Glendale
(602) 296-4439
Brushfire Tacos y Tapas Menu

Brushfire Tacos y Tapas is a hidden gem located in a complex that may seem like a school or church area. The menu is simple, but the flavors are anything but. The standout dish is the corn elote, which is elevated by the spicy mayo. The steak fries are also a must-try, seasoned to perfection and the best part of the meal. While some dishes like the chicken tacos and steak were slightly cold, the flavors were still great. The staff is friendly and accommodating, making you feel like a million bucks. The prices are fair, and the portion sizes are generous, ensuring you won’t leave hungry or broke.

The restaurant is also kid-friendly and wheelchair accessible. While there were some negative reviews, it’s important to note that the restaurant has made improvements, as seen in Review 5, where the chicken bowl was fantastic. Brushfire Tacos y Tapas is a great spot to satisfy your taco cravings, and the bacon breakfast tacos are a must-try.

Timo Wine Bar

Timo Wine Bar - <a href="https://www.timocentral.com">Photo Source</a>
Timo Wine Bar – Photo Source

8801 N Central Ave Phoenix
(602) 354-3846
Timo Wine Bar Menu

Timo Wine Bar is a must-visit for anyone looking for a great dining experience. The menu is extensive, with a variety of options to choose from, including wood-fired pizzas, lamb chops, sea bass, and steak sandwiches. The Smoked Salmon on Corn Cakes tapas is a standout dish that is not to be missed. The wine selection is also impressive, with a glass of red Zinfandel being a popular choice. The atmosphere is quaint and cozy, making it the perfect spot for a date night or a night out with friends.

While there was a negative review about the kitchen, it seems like an isolated incident. The happy hour prices and wine selection are still great, and the manager was quick to address the issue and even comped the pizza. It’s clear that the staff at Timo Wine Bar cares about their customers and wants to ensure they have a great experience.

On the other hand, Review 3 raves about the amazing service and food. The Sangria is a must-try, and the patio with the large fire pit is the perfect spot to enjoy a night out with friends. The staff, including server Kaitlin and manager Jason, went above and beyond to accommodate a large group of 20+ ladies from a social club.

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Overall, Timo Wine Bar is a great spot for anyone looking for delicious food, great wine, and a cozy atmosphere. The staff is friendly and accommodating, making it a top choice for a night out.

Quench Taps and Tapas

Quench Taps and Tapas - <a href="https://www.quenchtaps.com">Photo Source</a>
Quench Taps and Tapas – Photo Source

14010 N Litchfield Rd Ste 212 Surprise
(480) 670-2962
Quench Taps and Tapas Menu

Quench Taps and Tapas is a fantastic restaurant that offers a great atmosphere and delicious food. The French press coffee is a must-try, and the Cuban sandwich is absolutely delicious. The charcuterie board is also a great option for those looking for some small foods and drinks. The caprese dip and olive oil citrus cake are fantastic, and the honey bourbon chicken skewers are a must-try. The Pineapple prosciutto flatbread with bechamel sauce is the best part of the menu, and the Clover Club Gin drink and the special strawberry basil rita are both refreshing without being too sweet. The service is great, and the ambiance is perfect for a nice, local date night restaurant. While some of the food has room for improvement, the overall experience is fantastic, and we will definitely be back to try more of the menu.

Pa’La Downtown

Pa’La Downtown - <a href="http://palakitchen.com/intro/downtown/">Photo Source</a>
Pa’La Downtown – Photo Source

132 E Washington St Phoenix
(602) 368-3052
Pa’La Downtown Menu

Pa’La Downtown is a must-visit restaurant in Phoenix! The restaurant has a beautiful design with an outdoor seating area, a big open window by the bar, and a fun upstairs area with live music on the weekends. The chefs at Pa’La Downtown are incredibly talented and prepare each dish with care and precision. The seafood dishes are some of the best in Phoenix, and the swordfish, Gulf Shrimp, and whole snapper are all highly recommended. The pesto pasta and New York strip steak are also delicious options. The service is top-notch, and the staff is friendly and knowledgeable about each dish.

The restaurant has a great vibe, and the music on the weekends adds to the overall experience. Even if you have dietary restrictions, the chefs are accommodating and can prepare dishes to meet your needs. While there were a few mixed reviews, the restaurant is still worth a visit. The negative reviews were mostly due to personal preferences, and the staff was quick to address any issues. Overall, Pa’La Downtown is a fantastic restaurant that is well worth the visit.

Personal Recommendation

For those seeking an authentic taste of Spain in the heart of Phoenix, The Farish House stands out as a top choice. Located in a historic 1899 bungalow, it offers not just a meal, but an experience. The combination of its high-end French bistro menu, the delightful vegan scallops made with mushrooms, and the unique Saturday Afternoon Tea service sets it apart. The ambiance, enhanced by live jazz on certain evenings, complements the culinary delights, making it a must-visit for both residents and visitors alike.

Conclusion

Phoenix’s culinary landscape is as diverse as it is delightful, with Spanish tapas taking a prominent spot in recent years. The city’s tapas restaurants, each with its unique flair and offerings, provide a gastronomic journey that mirrors the vibrancy of Spain. From traditional dishes to contemporary interpretations, there’s a plate for every palate. As Phoenix continues to evolve as a foodie destination, its tapas scene stands as a testament to the city’s commitment to quality, authenticity, and innovation in its culinary endeavors. Whether you’re a seasoned tapas enthusiast or a curious first-timer, Phoenix promises an unforgettable dining experience.

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