A Guide to UA restaurants, bars and cafes

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Sofia Moraga | The Daily Wildcat Illegal Pete's is one of the many restaurants along Main Gate Square in Tucson, Ariz.

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College is all fun and games until you're sitting in your dorm room staring into an empty mini-fridge, needing some power food before class or searching for a place to have a study meal with you friends. Whatever the occasion, The Daily Wildcat is here to help with this guide to campus restaurants, bars and cafés to satisfy your taste buds throughout the semester.

Student Union Memorial Center

· Cactus Grill

Located on the third floor of the Student Union, Cactus Grill has everything from omelets and wraps to noodle bowls and burgers. This UA eatery is also home to an extensive salad bar where students can build their own mixture of vegetables, fruits and dressings. During the fall semester, Cactus Grill is open Monday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Fridays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

· Sabor

According to its website, Sabor is the perfect option for students who are searching for “fresh, fast Mexican flavors.”  This UA restaurant serves up a variety of burritos, quesadillas, tacos, enchiladas and fresh chips and salsa. They also offer $8 combo meals and $5 breakfast burritos for when you’re on the go. Sabor will be open during the fall Monday through Thursday from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Fridays from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

· Steak N Shake


Sofia Moraga
The Student Union offers a variety of eating options for students and faculty alike.


Looking for your fix of burgers and hand-scooped milkshakes? Steak N Shake is the place for you. Founded in 1934, this UA restaurant serves beef and steak burgers, chicken sandwiches, melts and a variety of flavored milkshakes, such as Butterfinger, cookies and cream and Nutella. You can pick up your next meal from Steak N Shake Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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· Panda Express

From orange chicken and rice to Beijing beef and chow mein, this “gourmet Chinese food” restaurant has it all. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite to eat or are hoping for a fortune cookie to help you get through an exam, Panda Express will be serving all of your hunger needs through the fall, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

· IQ Fresh

IQ Fresh has healthy food options for students on-the-go. Their menu is equipped with salads, wraps, breakfast boules, chilled fruit whips and smoothies. IQ Fresh is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Fridays and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

· Papa John’s Pizza

It may not be Krusty Krab pizza, but the next best thing could be Papa John’s. Stop by the second floor of the student union to grab your choice of pies or pizza by the slice. If you’re feeling really hungry, throw in some breadsticks and a salad too. Papa John’s will be open in the fall on Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

· Einstein Bros Bagels

Don’t get hangry, get Einstein Bros Bagels! This UA restaurant has a variety of bagels with your choice of cream cheese, as well as breakfast sandwiches, lunch sandwiches and coffee. During the fall you can grab a bite to eat on Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Park Student Union

· Bagel Talk

According to their web page, Bagel Talk “features a large selection of gourmet bagels, cream cheese, breakfast bagel sandwiches, and piping hot coffee.” Located at the Park Student Union, this bagel shop has everything to satisfy your breakfast needs. Bagel Talk will be open on Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the fall.

· Core

With omelets, stir-fry, fajitas, quesadillas and salads, this UA restaurant has some healthy and unique options for any occasion. You can build your own meal complete with meats, tofu, cheese and vegetables. During the fall, Core will be open on Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

· Molto Gusto

Delizioso! This Italian-based UA restaurant is located on the second floor of the Park Student Union and serves your choice of flatbread and paninis with a variety of sauces, meats and toppings. Molto Gusto will be open for your eating pleasure Monday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the fall.

· The Den

This Den by Denny’s is one of the only UA restaurants that serves breakfast all day, including the Original Grand Slam, pancakes and brioche breakfast melts. They also serve burgers, sandwiches, salads, mozzarella sticks and chicken strips. They are located on the second floor of the Park Student Union and will be open from 9 a.m. to midnight Monday through Sunday during the fall.

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Main Gate Square

· Chipotle Mexican Grill

This University Blvd. favorite prides itself on being sustainably savvy with real ingredients and “no added flavors, colors or preservatives.” Their choices include burritos, bowls, corn and flour tacos, salads, quesadillas, chips and freshly made salsa and queso. This Chipotle location is open every day from 10:45 a.m. to 10 p.m.

· Frog & Firkin 

According to its webpage, Frog & Firkin “does what very few pubs can claim – combine a festive atmosphere and great beer with a menu that in every aspect could stand on its own in any restaurant setting.” This locally owned bar and restaurant has a variety of appetizers, burgers, salads, steak, fish, sandwiches, pizza and desert. They also host live music and have pool and dart boards for your enjoyment. They are open until from 11 - 1 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.

· Fuku Sushi

Located near the corner of Park Avenue and University Boulevard, this sushi restaurant serves a variety of sushi rolls, egg rolls, salads, teriyaki bowls and fusion entrees, which include burgers, sandwiches, tacos, tofu and fish fillets. They are open to satisfy your sushi needs 7 days a week from 11 a.m. to midnight, and have happy hour from 3 - 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and all day Sunday.

· Gentle Ben’s Brewing Co.


Sofia Moraga
Gentle Ben's Brewing Company is one of the many restaurants along Main Gate Square in Tucson, Ariz.


According to its webpage, Gentle Ben’s “features 12 local Barrio Brews on tap [and] serves up incredible American and Southwest eats as perfected by Chef Jonah Gomes.” Located on the corner of University Boulevard and Tyndall, this restaurant is a student favorite and serves a variety of southwestern appetizers and entrees. Stop by to grab a bite Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., or stop by for happy hour Monday through Friday from 3 - 6 p.m.

· Illegal Pete’s

This popular spot is a “fast casual Mexican restaurant serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and late night with full bar and live music.” From burritos and bowls to nachos and quesadillas, Illegal Pete’s is perfect for a bite to eat during the day or for a drink at night. They’re open until midnight Sunday through Wednesday and until 2:30 a.m. Thursday through Saturday. 

· No Anchovies

With renovations completed in 2016, this pizza and sports bar is over 10,000 square feet with a full bar, patio and upstairs nightclub. Open from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. every day, No Anchovies serves pizza by the slice with a variety of toppings, loaded tots, fries and wings.

· Panera Bread

Panera Bread is the perfect study spot with a large dining area and food that will get you through a long study session. Located off of Park Avenue, Panera Bread has a full bakery with bagels, breads and pastries as well as a variety of soups, salads and sandwiches. They’re open Monday through Saturday from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sundays from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

· Pei Wei Asian Diner

Pei Wei Asian Diner has a menu that is “inspired by ancient Asian cooking, from the wok-fired classics of China to the street market spices of Thailand, all freshly made to order in [their] open kitchens daily.” Open every day from 10:45 a.m. to 9 p.m., Pei Wei has hand-rolled sushi, rice bowls, noodle bowls and salad rolls to curb your hunger.

· The Fix

The Fix, “Arizona’s Mac N Chz Headquarters,” serves this classic comfort food, gourmet style. Whether you’re looking for a classic mac or jalapeño popper mac, this Main Gate Square eatery has it all. Be sure to stop by The Fix to get your fix from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

Coffee and Cafés

· Starbucks

The University of Arizona is home to three Starbucks locations; the UA bookstore, the Main Library and Main Gate Square. Starbucks is perfect for all of your coffee needs, whether you have to pull an all-nighter or need a boost before your next class. Stop by one of these three location to grab a hot latte, iced coffee or blended frappuccino. 

· Caffé Lucé

This locally owned and operated café is known as “Tucson’s premier artisan coffee roasting company.” With a variety of coffee, tea and flavors, Caffé Lucé can help get you through the day. Stop by to check it out Monday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

· Espresso Art

Located on University Boulevard, Espresso Art offers a mixture of bold and light coffees or teas along with your choice of pastries. This European-style café is home to a handcrafted cocktail bar and hookah lounge. They are open from 8 a.m. to midnight 7 days a week.

· Scented Leaf Tea House & Lounge

The Scented Leaf invites students to “indulge [their] senses with exclusive, award-winning loose-leaf teas from around the world.” Customers can choose from a variety of tea flavors such as banana chocolate cake, apple cinnamon, green tea mango, spicy pear and piña colada. They’ll be available for you to try every day from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

· La Petite Patisserie

Located at the Park Student Union, this cafe offers fresh pastries, crepes, smoothies, coffee and espresso for any student who’s on the go. Grab your coffee and breakfast before heading off to class from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.


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