Bruschetta trio | Photo by Leah LeMoine
North Phoenix’s 32 Shea is both the worst and the best place to drink and dine during a pandemic. Its famously cozy (OK, a bit cramped) interior is anathema for social distancing, so only a handful of people at a time can be seated inside. The petite coffee shop and eatery’s idyllic patio is another story. Outdoor dining is easy, breezy and beautiful (CoverGirl ref intended) in the lush outdoor oasis, which boasts gobs of greenery, a Buddha statue, a constellation of string lights and plentiful umbrellas. It’s dog-friendly, too.
Since I’m still staying at home, I ordered happy hour goodies to go (at full price; I’ll list the happy hour prices here; see THE DETAILS below for dine-in happy hour specials). It was the easiest takeout pick–up I’ve made all pandemic thanks to 32 Shea’s drive-thru lane – I didn’t have to leave my car and the hand-off was smooth and quick.
Bruschetta ($3.75 each) is fresh, filling and softer than your usual specimen due to lightly toasted bread that is still plush and fluffy under its barely golden crust. If you find bruschetta too hard or crunchy at other places, you’ll love it here. We ordered a trio: sweet and salty prosciutto, mascarpone, figs and honey; super savory salami, pesto and tomato; and classic mozzarella, basil and tomato. The latter is also offered in the form of a caprese salad ($5.25) with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Pulled pork and cheddar sliders | Photo by Leah LeMoine
Hummus ($5.50) was creamy and garlicky, topped with walnut pesto and roasted peppers. I loved the crisp, airy lavash served alongside veggies for scooping. My carnivorous beloved preferred the pulled pork and cheddar sliders (two for $6), which were pretty damn delicious and put me in party mode. There’s just something so festive about sliders. 32 Shea also offers them in turkey burger form with Brie, baked apples and bacon, or as mini roast beef sandwiches with creamy horseradish, Muenster and jus. You can’t mix and match the sliders, but trust me: If you order all of them, they will get eaten.
We didn’t have room for the creamy artichoke and spinach dip with garlic-toasted bread ($5.50) or the tuna salad with chips ($5). Next time.
Hummus platter | Photo by Leah LeMoine
During happy hour, cocktails cost $7, select glasses of wine cost $5 and select craft beers (which skew local) cost $4. Pre-pandemic, I loved popping into 32 Shea for a $5 glass of Garnacha or Pinot Grigio. Once I even sipped a glass of rosé before taking a yoga class nearby. I’ve also enjoyed the Rosemary Hussey (rosemary-infused simple syrup, gin, fresh lime juice and soda water) and the Dark ’N’ Stormy. Beer lovers can choose from a nice variety including Mother Road Brewing Co.’s Tower Station IPA, Avery Brewing Co.’s Liliko’i Kepolo Belgian-style wheat ale with passionfruit and Oscar Blues Mama’s Little Yella Pils Czech Pilsner.
32 Shea’s “2-Hour Munchie Hour” runs from 4-6 p.m. daily, for dine-in customers only. Happy hour drink specials run from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. daily.
Additionally, Mondays bring half-price bottles of wine (half off the first bottle; $5 off the second). On Mondays and Tuesdays, 32 Shea offers a $25 bruschetta and bottle of wine deal (limit one special per table of four people). All offers are for dine-in only.