(Photo courtesy of Cruda Mariscos & Oyster Bar)

Sonoran Restaurant Week’s Impact on Tucson’s Culinary Scene

September 7, 2023
By Tucson Foodie

Our culture is vibrant, the flavors are always sizzlin’, and taste buds are unquestionably treated 365 days a year. Then, when Sonoran Restaurant Week rolls around in September each year, the 10-day city-wide event shines an added light on dozens of restaurants and the customized menus they put on display.

a sandwich cut in half on a plate
(Photo courtesy of The Neighborhood)
Here’s How it Works:

There is no charge for restaurants to take part. The only rule is that they must be locally owned and offer a $25, $35, or $45 prix fixe menu for diners to enjoy. From time to time, restaurants even go above and beyond, creating special offerings at multiple price points for diners to explore.

In the past, some restaurant owners have even extended their Sonoran Restaurant Week menus beyond the 10 days or added exclusive items from the event to their standard menu due to the demand.

Sonoran Restaurant Week’s Impact

Not only is it a dreamy treasure hunt for eaters as they explore restaurants in all areas of town, but it also has a major impact on local businesses participating in Sonoran Restaurant Week. For instance, local restaurants typically estimate at least 25-30% more revenue during the 10-day event, which is especially considerable coming out of the summertime slump known to hit Tucson as the temps rise into triple digits. Restaurants need the added support, and Sonoran Restaurant Week has proven to deliver.

“This event is important not only because it’s an opportunity for both local foodies and visitors to explore all that Tucson, Arizona has to offer, but also because it drives over $3 million in additional revenue to local restaurants,” said Shane Reiser, CEO of Tucson Foodie.

a plate of food on a table
(Photo courtesy of La Chingada Cocina)

In 2022, Tucson Foodie acquired Sonoran Restaurant Week with the goal of making each year’s event bigger and better than its predecessor.

“When Tucson Foodie was given the opportunity to take over Sonoran Restaurant Week, we jumped at it,” said Reiser. “It’s closely aligned with our mission to help people explore the food and the places that make Tucson worthy of our UNESCO City of Gastronomy designation.”

With the success of each year’s eating extravaganza and showcasing of Sonoran-inspired dishes, Tucson Foodie, as a collective, is increasingly excited about the future of the culinary scene.

So, from Friday, September 8 – Sunday, September 17, explore and fall in love (again?) with Tucson’s incredible restaurant scene via Sonoran Restaurant Week. Check out our interactive guide below and start planning your foodie adventure.

For more information, visit sonoranrestaurantweek.com.

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