November 20, 2008

Best fries in Flagstaff

*This article was written by me. It first appeared in Flagstaff Live! on Nov. 13, 2008*

Fries, chips, pommes frites, freedom fries, French-fried potatoes—no matter what you call them or how you cook ‘em (deep fried, oven baked, pan fried), fries can be the saving grace of any meal or just a delicious snack. They may not be a healthy choice, but that doesn’t stop fries from being America’s favorite side dish. Introduced to the U.S. by President Thomas Jefferson in the 1800s and made popular after World War I, fries are an edible part of American culture. So, which Flagstaff eateries have perfected the art of good old fries? Here’s a look:

Oregano’s Pizza Bistro
605 W. Riordan Rd.

A pizza restaurant with some of the best fries in town? You betcha! The waffle-cut (a.k.a. cross-cut) fries at Oregano’s are fabulous. You can order a big basket as an appetizer, which I recommend wholeheartedly.

They’re lightly salted plus seasoned and crispy without being overly cooked. These bad boys are light and fluffy, but make no mistake, they’re deep-fried goodness. (Oregano’s just got some great new booths, so you can now be really comfy while devouring them too!)

Bigfoot BBQ
120 N. Leroux

Garlic Romano fries, sweet tater fries, and regular fries are all served up at Bigfoot in the basement of the Old Town Shops downtown. The sides here (from fried potatoes to fried okra) are among Flag’s elite. The garlic fries are tasty without being overpowering. So you can easily munch and still give your sweetie a big old smooch after lunch. These fries in particular compliment Bigfoot’s tangy barbecue sauce. The sweet taters are my fav here, though. They’re cooked up with a nice crispy and lightly salted outside and warm, smooshy sweet inside. Mmm mmm good.

Brandy’s Restaurant & Bakery
1500 E. Cedar Ave.

Ah, the breakfast fry. What a lovely addition you make to a hearty breakfast that can fill you up all day and give you enough energy for taking some of the great trails in our area. Some of the best breakfast potatoes in town can be found at Brandy’s. Their country potatoes, as they’re officially called, are cut into cubes, grilled up on their stovetop, then seasoned and served.
Here’s a little secret, the menu says you can get fries or a pancake with many of their breakfasts plus an English muffin. But if you ask nicely, you can ditch the English muffin and get the breakfast fries and the pancake with your meal. Brandy’s also serves up sweet potato fries and regular fries at lunchtime too. Right now Brandy’s has some great 15-cent specials to celebrate their anniversary. And on Fridays, 15 percent off your whole order total—a perfect time to try the fries!


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