24 November, 2020, 18:28

15 story “The Graduate,” Tucson’s newest hotel now open at Main Gate Square

The Graduate brings and blends a mix of modern, upscale and casual, but it's the top floor restaurant and bar, "The Moonstone" that's sure to be the star.

Tucson’s newest hotel, The Graduate opened October 14 at Main Gate Square.

Set just across a narrow street from Main Gate Square’s Marriott, which includes 9 floors, The Graduate features 15 floors, one of which is the rooftop bar and restaurant. While the Graduate offers fewer rooms than the Marriott, what it lacks in quantity, it makes up for in quality with a fresh, casual, slightly modern Southwestern aesthetic.

Inside the The Moonstone rooftop bar at The Graduate in Tucson

Inside the The Moonstone rooftop bar at The Graduate in Tucson (Photo Courtesy of The Graduate)

While The Graduate brings and blends a mix of modern, upscale and casual, it’s the inclusion of top floor restaurant and bar, “The Moonstone” that’s sure to be the star for locals and visitors. In fact, if elevation is what you’re after, you’ll find no higher local space for eating and drinking.

With accordion glass doors that open the entire space into an essentially extended patio, Moonstone’s unrivaled views of the Catalinas and Rincon mountains are not just visible but on display from the high-window walled patio that makes up roughly 50 percent of the space. The patio also features multiple fire pits for lounging groups.

Fire pits with a view at The Graduate Hotel's The Moonstone

Fire pits with a view at The Graduate Hotel’s The Moonstone (Photo by Adam Lehrman)

For hungry guests, there’s plenty to salivate over, however the menu is slightly limited.

The Southwest Meat & Cheese Plate ($18) offers dried chorizo, Serrano ham, Oaxacan and Chihuahua queso, and house pickles with grilled bread.

Tajin Spiced Shrimp Skewers ($18) is a colorful dish of shrimp, mango, and Tajin spices while the Graduate Smash Burger ($15) includes two smashed burger patties topped with American cheese, and secret sauce on a potato roll served with house chips. View the full Moonstone bar and food menu here.

Tajin Spiced Shrimp Skewers at The Graduate Hotel’s The Moonstone (Photo by Adam Lehrman)

The Graduate’s Moonstone also offers 10 house cocktail creations, some of which are a subtle play on existing cocktails, like the Paloma, made with Espolon blanco tequila, grapefruit, agave, and lime.

Cactus Water ($12), a twist on a vodka cranberry, includes the addition of basil and agave. The Moonstone’s signature drink, aptly named Moonstone ($15), features Espolon blanco, Cointreau, blue curacao, Luxardo, lime, and a mezcal rinse imparting a touch of smoke. Horray’s Hooch ($13) features gin, elderflower, honey and lemon chilled and served up. Keep in mind that The Moonstone offers a full bar, so if you’re not feeling any of the house creations, they’ll whip you up whatever you prefer. A limited yet well-rounded selection of beer and wine is also available.

The "Cactus Water" cocktail at The Graduate Hotel's The Moonstone features vodka, cranberry, agave, and basil

The “Cactus Water” cocktail at The Graduate Hotel’s The Moonstone features vodka, cranberry, agave, and basil (Photo by Adam Lehrman)

While you’ll find plenty of delights to snack and sip on, for hotel guests, it’s just enough to satisfy yet still encourage exploring the area. You’ll just have to pull away from the view first.

The Graduate, located at 930 E 2nd St., is the newest member of a family of hotels that reside in dynamic university-anchored towns around the U.S.A. Learn more about The Graduate at graduatehotels.com/tucson.

Adam Lehrman started Tucson Foodie in late 2008 as a way to track his search for the best food Tucson had to offer.

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