Saddle Up for Pinnacle Peak: Trail Dust Town’s Old West Inspired Steakhouse

A steakhouse that's been serving cowboys and cowgirls since the 60s continues to entertain Tucsonans.


If you’ve never been or just haven’t been for some time, the family owned and operated Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse continues to keep its authentic atmosphere of pioneer times.

The menu offers everything you’d hope to find at a steakhouse, and is fit for all types of appetites. At first glance, you’ll notice the T-Bone steaks come in three sizes — the Cowboy, Cowgirl, and Big Cowboy. It all just depends on the severity of the grumbles inside yer’ belly. Each of these are cut from the short loin and cooked over real mesquite wood. The Cowboy Steak Dinner is prominently featured, and with a Baked Potato, Salad, Bread, Beans, and Fruit Cobbler, you’re sure to enjoy the classic American dining experience that has kept Pinnacle Peak going strong for over 55 years.

It’s a focused menu emphasizing their tried-and-true specialties, and that can be a sigh of relief for those harboring an indecisiveness at the dinner table. Other signature dishes and highlights you might imagine yourself eating around a campfire include the Baby Back Ribs, Pit Beef, and Burgers.

Dining room and grill at Pinnacle Peak (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Dining room and grill at Pinnacle Peak (Credit: Jackie Tran)

And Pinnacle Peak tries to keep it local, too, with most of the ingredients being brought in from local suppliers based in southern Arizona.

It is quite possible that Pinnacle Peak is to blame for Tucson casual, with their strict no ties allowed policy. If you attempt wearing one it’ll be snipped and hung from the ceiling, alongside the thousands of others they’ve collected over the years. Not unlike the ties adorning the ceiling, there are nods to the old west throughout the restaurant. A costume once worn by John Wayne inhabits the lobby and colorized images of the old west decorate the walls. The servers are even pulled from history books and western movies, so you can get served by the likes of Bat Masterson and Josie Wales.

Pinnacle Peak first opened in 1962 and is still located in Trail Dust Town, a historically faithful recreation of a turn of the century American frontier town. Both are conveniently located on the east side of midtown at Tanque Verde and Kolb, so moseying into the wild west doesn’t require a lengthy road trip. You can catch a glimpse of the Old West while exploring the streets of Trail Dust Town. Although it’s not as dusty as the name implies, there’s plenty of history in Trail Dust Town’s brick roads and authentic pioneer architecture. From wagons to building designs and signs, a walk into the courtyard is a trip back in time.

Dinner at Pinnacle Peak (Credit: Jackie Tran)

Dinner at Pinnacle Peak (Credit: Jackie Tran)

An architecture highlight is The Savoy Opera House; a private banquet facility designed in the Victorian style. The interior features a pressed tin ceiling, Victorian chandeliers, and a 1500 square foot dance floor. The front doors were actually sourced from the famous Savoy Hotel in London so you can walk through the same doors of Queen Elizabeth and Winston Churchill.

The abundance of history continues with the horses’ contributions to U.S. Military history detailed inside the Museum of the Horse Soldier. This unique collection of artifacts takes you on a vivid journey through this fascinating part of U.S. History.

If you are in the mood for gun-slinging confrontations and slapstick laughs, be sure to catch the Pistoleros Wild West Stunt Show, The show has entered into its 21st year and still features high falls, low falls, and even explosions.

There are several local shops in Trail Dust Town offering everything from Belgian chocolate, magic, old-time photos, toys & novelty items, jewelry and more!

A family-friendly evening out wouldn’t be complete without a ride on the train, carousel, and Ferris wheel! For those looking for a scare, there is a year-round haunt.

So saddle up, partner, for a fun-filled night out to Pinnacle Peak and Trail Dust Town!

Pinnacle Peak is located in Trail Dust Town at 6541 E. Tanque Verde Rd.. For more information on their menu, events, and hours, please visit pinnaclepeaktucson.com.

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Matt Sterner is a journalist, novelist, loves films, and would like to think he's a filmmaker. When he's eating, he likes to talk with his mouth full and write about it.

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