If you are in the Scottsdale area and you have not yet been to Carlsbad Tavern, drop whatever you are doing and check it out. This New Mexican restaurant is themed to resemble Carlsbad Caverns, a beautiful tourist spot in Carlsbad, New Mexico. The scenery doesn’t so much reflect the caverns as much as the bats that inhabit them. That is just part of the fun.
As a native New Mexican relocated to Phoenix, I have been mostly disappointed by local restaurants claiming to have New Mexican food. I then stumbled upon Carlsbad Tavern in Scottsdale by pure luck and feelings of joy overwhelmed me as I found my little piece of home. They hit the nail on the head when it comes to authentic New Mexican cuisine. My favorite menu item are the enchiladas with chicken. Besides being heaven to my tastebuds, this place is just so insanely cool looking!
If you care zero about New Mexican food and just love bats this is the place for you too. Bats adorn the indoor and outdoor space at the Tavern and are placed in very creative ways. Half of the fun is just walking through and trying to spot all of the bats. They are of course, fake.
Carlsbad Tavern offers an amazing brunch with specials not always found on the menu. The Carlsbad benedict will bring you straight to heaven. In addition to the amazing brunch food they offer a Bloody Mary Bar where you can personalize your cocktail. They also have a late night menu available after 10pm with specialty items perfect for a late night snack. Their cocktail menu features a classic and creative list of Margaritas… my favorite being the prickly pair option. This Scottsdale fav also features a gorgeous outdoor patio space to have drinks or dine. There you will find more bats, a waterfall, and even a little river that runs through the patio areas. This patio space is perfect for a party or even a wedding rehearsal dinner.
The staff has been super friendly every time I have been, and even caters to my odd New Mexican requests… because, they get it! This is one of Scottsdale’s hidden gems, and is definitely worth the drive from surrounding areas. If you have never tasked authentic New Mexican food, here is your chance. To view menus and find more information on Carlsbad Tavern please visit their website at https://carlsbadtavern.com/scottsdale-south-scottsdale-carlsbad-tavern-about