We went to Noca on our last trip to Phoenix, and it was the best dinner we had while in town. Located in a strip mall (it seems that we are finding dining gems in strip malls) off Camelback Road, the interior is fun and eclectic.
They had been closed from November to March replacing the chef, and whoever they got is doing a great job.
I had the carrot soup with sliced pecans, the simple salad that is anything but, with pickled carrot and great slabs of Manchego cheese, and the tagliatelle carbonara that was almost but not quite overpowered with the smoky tasso littered in the pasta.
Cindi had the warm panzanella salad, that in keeping with their philosophy of using what's in season substituted brussels sprouts for tomatoes. She also had the hanger steak with some of the best potatoes I have had.
After dinner coffee comes in a french press, and the only disappointment was no dessert menu has been formulated yet. You do get a torch of cotton candy but I'm not a big cotton candy fan.
The service is friendly if a little ditzy. They really need to rethink their wine list. For location and menu, Noca does not need five or six choices of $150 and up bottles of wine for each varietal.
Go by, eat well, you won't be disappointed.
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