That’s not thunder you hear. Monsoon season is over. That rumble in the distance is actually a hoard of excited nerds, stampeding their way toward downtown Tucson!
Tucson Comic-Con (TCC) is finally back after two years in hiatus. Now in its 13th year, TCC is sure to be better than ever, jam-packed with celebrity guests, costume contests, games, panels, vendors, and much more.
In honor of all the Super-Nerds attending (like me) who might need some food on-hand to shove in their mouths to avoid an inopportune social interaction, here’s a look at this year’s food truck lineup, restaurants within walking distance, plus a bonus list of the TCC2022 organizing team’s favorite local restaurants around town.
Next-level hot dogs with unique flavors. You can top ’em with grilled steak, ground beef, green chili, spicy sour cream sauce, crumbled tortilla chips, and more. If you’re a plant-based nerd, get the vegan version of The Baloney and thank me later.
One of the most popular food trucks in the Tucson area, Gigi’s is constantly revising its menu. Fans will always find something new and delicious to enjoy, whether it’s time-honored carne asada or Latin-fusion tortas. If you’re a nerd with a sweet tooth, get the Donut Bacon Burger.
DC Jumbie has El Fidel, which features pork slowly roasted in mojo criollo (Cuban sour orange and garlic sauce), ham, Genoa salami, Swiss cheese, dill pickles, mayo, and mustard on a grill-pressed sub roll. Get that, nerd.
For more information, visit @dcjumbiefoodtruck on Instagram.
When you’ve had your fill of pop culture, get some Tucson culture and walk south into the beautiful Barrio Santa Rosa neighborhood for a coffee at Exo. Nestled inside a historic 1885 adobe home, Exo offers delicious roasts, friendly staff, baked bites that make you feel warm inside, and a cute little patio. You’ll fit right in. Everyone there is a different flavor of nerd.
Enjoy some breakfast yummies at Meyer Avenue Cafe while sitting in The Coronet’s gorgeous restaurant and outdoor patio. We love this place so much, we recently wrote a three-part series about it. The Lil Dutch Babies (shown above) are for fancy nerds.
If you continue walking south down Meyer Ave (or Convent) and hang a left on 18th, you’ll arrive at Five Points Market & Restaurant. If you’re with a fellow nerd, tell your friend to get the Huevos Rancheros and you order the Smoked Beet Sandwich (shown above). Both of you should order a Toffee, Chocolate Chip & Sea Salt Brown Butter Cookie (if any are left that day).
For more information, visit 5pointstucson.com.
If downtown is more your thing, head to The Delta for southern-style dishes inspired by Arizona, Texas, and Louisiana. Get the Cast Iron Cornbread (with fermented candied pecan honey butter) and a Bougie Donut. What nerd doesn’t love cornbread and donuts?
Grab a drink after TCC2022 at nearby Owl’s Club, a dark and elegant bar in an old funeral home. Their Old Fashioned is just $5 at Happy Hour (5 p.m. – 7 p.m.). Expect to belly up to the bar next to a D&D nerd.
Maru features a wide variety of ramen, udon, and curry rice dishes along with a selection of ready-made snacks such as onigiri for on-the-go eating. Nerds should get a double order of the Kara Age Curry – ideal for rapid mouth-stuffing.
Just across the street from the convention center El Minuto, a mexican restaurant loved by locals for over 80 years. Nerd-out on the Hot Chile Rellenos or take it easy with the dependable Tomato, Onion, Green Chile Cheese Crisp (shown above).
Muy popular Mexican cuisine with a modern feel. Get the Potato Rolled Tacos with Rojo Suace. Nerd.
Carnivorous nerds are required to order the Barbecue Pulled-Pork Sandwich with blueberry espresso barbecue sauce and Granny Smith apples. The pork is prepared with a spice rub and smoked in-house for nine hours. And do you see that sauce dripping out of the sandwich? That’s Decibel’s very own espresso mixed in with the blueberry to create the barbecue sauce.
Take your LARP group to Rocco’s, stuff your faces with whatever the Pizza Of The Month is, and feel free to be a little loud.
Come say hi! I’ll be hanging around exhibitor space #207 with Ambr Grading, a TCG card grading company based right here in Tucson.