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Starches aren’t hard to come by in this town. In fact, it’s almost more difficult to narrow down what kind of delicious, crispy, piping hot choice of potato you’d prefer. But the answer is simple: you want tater tots, bite-sized little balls of sizzling potato encased in a browned, deep-friend shell of more potato. Okay, you know what they are, so here’s where to get them.
Angels Trumpet Ale House
810 North Second Street
Angels Trumpet Ale House in downtown Phoenix has those 30 rotating taps of craft beer, but it also has some upscale pup food — including tater tots. The basket order here comes with a generous helping of piping hot and crispy tot-nuggets, which is sided with three house-made sauces — spicy ranch dressing, ketchup, and Sriracha mayo. The best place to take down this basket? That expansive, bistro-lighted patio of course.
The tots at Yucca Tap Room are to die for.
Yucca Tap Room
29 West Southern Avenue, Tempe
This Tempe staple may be known as a decades-old music venue, but have a seat and be ready to put away some tots. The Bao Chow menu at Yucca Tap Room has many treasures that come sided with top-tier tots. But if you’d like to make them the main attraction, order one of three tot-centered dishes. There’s Blasted in Bangkok, (a layer of crispy tots under bulgogi beef with kimchi, Sriracha aioli, and onions), then Mr. Barbecue (tots with pork, cheese, sour cream, onions, and golden barbecue sauce), and the True Believer (carne or chicken with cheese sauce, pice de gallo, sour cream, and green onions).
Over Easy keeps it simple and has some of the best tots in town.
One of the more popular orders of tots in town, the regular and sweet potato tater tots can be attached as a side dish with say, the mushroom burger or the turkey avocado sandwich, and some of the breakfast dishes to boot. They are also available as an a la carte side order. Now Over Easy has a slew of Valley locations, so you can order up this crispy finger food pretty much anywhere in town.
The Canadian Tots at Paradise Valley Burger Co. is a blend of sugar and spice with a northern touch.
Paradise Valley Burger Co.
Paradise Valley Burger Co.
4001 East Bell Road, #102
This north Phoenix burger joint is known for fun specialty handhelds like the Booze Burger and the Country Fried Burger, but the real fun is on the sides section of the menu. Paradise Valley Burger Co. offers sweet potato tater tots with a cup of chipotle ketchup and jalapeño ranch. But wait, there’s also the Canadian Tots, sweet potato tots smothered with maple syrup, bacon, serrano chili, and powdered sugar. Last, there’s the Tater Tot Pie — a thin-crust pizza with chipotle and truffle barbecue sauce, roast pork, red Fresno chili, caramelized onion, rosemary, and, of course, sweet potato tots.
Snag some tots and a seat on the patio at Gracie’s Tax Bar.
Gracie’s Tax Bar
711 North Seventh Avenue
Yes, Gracie’s Tax Bar has tater tots, and we’d argue they’re pretty Phoenix-famous by now. These little fried lumps are prepared on the flat, hot grill behind the bar (as are cheese curds and fried pickles), reminding some of us of crustier bar and grill setups from years past. Enjoy your basket of tots in this glowing-red diner-meets-bar atmosphere, or out on the expanded patio. Both experiences will almost certainly be soundtracked by the Talking Heads or Fugazi from the jukebox.
Editor’s note: This story was originally published on February 27, 2018. It was updated on February 2, 2021.
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