Department Store Dining in Phoenix

We’ve all been there: It’s noon and you’ve been lugging around full-to-the-brim shopping bags for hours. Hunger strikes. What do to? Grab a soft pretzel and Diet Coke and call it a day. No way. The only thing a gal loves more than a great sale in a great sale that is celebrated over lunch at one of the Valley’s diving department store restaurants. Take a look at these department stores that offer deliciousness after you’ve shopped ’til you dropped.

NM Cafe at Neiman Marcus Whether you take a spot at the bar or on the shaded patio, every spot at Scottsdale Fashion Square’s NM Cafe is topped off with amazing popovers served with strawberry butter to tide you over. The menu features delish soups, salads, burgers and sandwiches including a few superhealthful Heart Couture items (like the veggie wrap with salad and grilled lemon shrimp with romaine hearts). If you like what you taste, several recipes from the “Neiman Marcus Cookbook” are highlighted on the Web site, including the how-to on the famed Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookie, Chicken Velvet Soup and BBQ Sea Scallops, to name a few.  480.990.2100 ext: 2068, http://www.neimanmarcus.com/.

Fred’s at Barneys New York When Barneys New York opened at Scottsdale Fashion Square, we were chomping at the bit to sample fare from the famous Fred’s restaurant, undoubtedly the most posh of the department store dining options. Thanks to the classy digs and sophisticated fare, it wouldn’t be out of the ordinary to see a couple dressed up for a date night next to a pack of casual shoppers.  Try Fred’s incredible Belgian pommes frites (pictured above) as a starter and move onto the amazing spaghetti and meatballs or an artisan-style pizza. Apart from being a popular lunchtime attraction for the shopping set, Fred’s has great happy hour specials Monday through Saturday from 4 to 7 p.m. and a must-try Sunday brunch where chef Mark’s homemade artisan bagels, four-cheese frittatas and brioche French toast are on the menu. 602.337.6000, http://www.barneys.com/.

Marketplace Cafe and Espresso Bar at Nordstrom Not only do the dining spots at both Chandler Fashion Center and Scottsdale Fashion Square Nordstrom locations offer tempting salads, great sandwiches and that well-deserved cup of coffee that you earned after waking up at 4 a.m. for the season’s best sale, but they also have a great kid’s menu to keep the little ones content. We’re fans of the cranberry-turkey sandwich, lime-and-cilantro chicken salad and wild mushroom ravioli. http://www.nordstrom.com/.

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