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Arizona fared well on Yelp’s recent list of the 100 best restaurants for pizza in the U.S. and Canada. Appropriately, the online food-review aggregator awarded four spots to our slice-crazy state – and just as ticklishly, the pizzerias in question were not the usual A-list suspects. Since three of them reside in Central Phoenix, they make for a credible try-’em-all-in-one-night ET adventure. The Rules 1. Assemble 6-8 people. Visit the restaurants in order. 2. Always...

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THE SCENE As I get older, I find myself ruminating about how so often we are the products of our time and place. For example, I grew up in the West Valley in the 1990s and early 2000s. In my sprawling slices of suburbia (I lived in Peoria, Glendale, Surprise and Avondale at various times), there weren’t a lot of independently owned and operated places – restaurants nor retail. I came of age with birthday...

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Photo by Nikki Buchanan   Caviar and Crème Fraîche Crêpe at Christopher’s at the Wrigley Mansion Yep, it’s true. I have been to Christopher’s twice now. Lucky, lucky, lucky! And although much of the menu was the same as my first visit, we did find this lovely changeup: a dainty crêpe, adorned with flowering herbs and a glistening orb of Black River Oscietra caviar, positioned on its perch with a dab of house-made crème fraîche....

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A new family-run pizzeria has opened in Downtown Phoenix. While it’s still finding its footing, it’s jumping off to a tasty start. Located on the corner of Van Buren Street and Fifth Avenue next to We’ve Got Flowers! is the new Via Della Slice Shop. Its housed in a historical warehouse, which I discovered after scrolling back through Via Della’s Instagram. I learned that the building was originally built in the 1920s as a car...

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Italian meatballs | Photo by Leah LeMoine   THE SCENE Sometimes it’s nice to reconnect with an old friend. I surmise I’ll be doing a lot of that as the vaccine rollout speeds up in Arizona, and I’m looking forward to seeing old pals in person – especially when those pals are restaurants.   North Italia is one such friend. I remember visiting its West Valley location (since shuttered) for the first time in high school. I was besotted by a deconstructed chicken lasagne on the menu at...