Thursday, September 22, 2011

Beaver Choice - Tempe, AZ

I need to start this post off with a disclaimer: the owners of Beaver Choice are actually one of my clients; I leased them the space to open the restaurant, so I went into this hoping that it would be good and I wouldn't have to write a bad review, well, I am happy to report that the food here is excellent!!  I really shouldn't have worried, as all of the reviews on Yelp were glowing, but you just never know! 

So I know you are probably chuckling at the name, who would name a restaurant Beaver Choice?  Especially if that restaurant was to be located in the same shopping center as Ted's Hot Dogs?  It makes for quite a comical corner for food, but it is tasty food, so I guess it just adds to the experience.  The owner of Beaver Choice, Hanna, is the nicest lady you could ever meet.  She ended up in Arizona via Canada via Sweden via Poland, and there are influences of each in her food.  Apparently the national animal of Canada is a beaver, so that is how the restaurant got it's name, and yes, she does know what beaver is slang for, but she thinks it is funny and gets people talking about her restaurant!

Luckily, her food is good enough to get people talking, and the name becomes just a side comment!  The day we were there, they were still writing orders by hand, but were going to be getting a computer system in the next week.  My only complaint about my experience was probably the wait and confusion due to the hand written orders, so now that that should be all cleared up, there is no reason to not go to Beaver Choice!

The menu is full of delicious sandwiches and pitas, as well as favorites such as QuebecPoutine (fries covered in cheese curds and gravy, a Canadian classic) and Swedish Meatballs with Lingonberry Sauce.  There were so many choices it was hard to choose, but we finally were ready to order.

My sister went with the Pork Tenderloin in Gin and Cream sauce.  Each entree comes with three side choices, and she went with the side salad, broccoli and the pan fried thyme potatoes.   When the food was served her plate was heaping with food, making the $11.50 dish well worthy of the price.  The pork medallions were perfectly cooked and tender, and delicious when dipped in the cream sauce, that had quite a bite from the gin.  The salad, was a salad, but the lemon dressing was tasty.  The broccoli was cooked well, but nothing special, which was not the case with the potatoes, they were phenomenal!  Perfectly roasted, crispy on the outside and seasoned with thyme, they were the perfect pairing to the pork.  My sister was very happy with her meal, and vowed to be more adventurous with her side choices the next time. 

I decided to try the dish that everyone says is the best one on the menu, the Chicken Schnitzel Cordon Bleu.  It is basically a chicken breast, pounded thin, then stuffed with ham and brie cheese.  It is then breaded, and sauteed until crispy and served with a creamy mushroom sauce smothered over the top.....and Oh My is AMAZING!  I don't even like mushrooms, but the sauce is scrumptious and goes so well with the crispy chicken, salty ham and creamy cheese.  I chose the creamy dill mashed potatoes as one of my sides, and they were perfect for sopping up the extra sauce.  I also got the marinated green beans, which were served like a cold bean salad, and had great flavor and the tomato basil salad, which was delicious as well.  Both were light and refreshing, which was the perfect compliment to the savory chicken dish.  The portions here are huge, so even though the dish was $11.75, I easily got two meals out of it.

The space doesn't have many tables, and is quite minimalist when it comes to decor (all from IKEA) but it makes up for it with the amazing flavors being pumped out of their tiny kitchen.  The menu is full of interesting and exotic sounding items, but also has a cheeseburger for the non-adventurous eaters in your life.  I can't wait to go back, and I really hope that when I do, Hanna has made some fresh pierogi that she has as a special every now and then! 

Beaver Choice
1743 E. Broadway Rd.
Tempe, AZ 85282

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