For all of the eating that we did during our Arizona sojourn, few places provided as much satisfying satiation as Scottsdale's sticky-sweet Sugar Bowl (est. 1958). Sticking out of Old Town's western facade like a sore, pink thumb, Sugar Bowl is the revisionist masterpiece of a late-Victorian/Edwardian ice cream parlor.
|Look out Sugar Bowl, here comes Mr. Tiny!|
Living in the very shadow of the Magic Kingdom (seriously, we can hear Disneyland's nightly firework spectacular), we smugly thought that we had the market cornered on 1950's-does-1900's Main Street charm. In one fell, Pepto-Bismol-colored swoop, Sugar Bowl proved us decidedly wrong. I try not to get too snobby about these things, but I have had more than my fill of 80's/90's does 50's diners. In fact, if I never see one more sun faded, life-size cut out of James Dean or Marilyn Monroe, it would all be too soon. Offering its own spin on sugar-coated history, Sugar Bowl's romantic landscape of neapolitan linoleum and tufted pink booths is like spending an afternoon inside a fluffy meringue....or Sugar Town.
"Sugar Town" - Nancy Sinatra
Change "town" to "bowl" and
they've got a solid new theme song!
|"Welcome to the Sugar Bowl!"|
I don't think it's lazy poetry...find me another word that
rhymes more perfectly with Sunday other than Sunday.
"Sundae" would just be too on the nose.
Interior stained-glass windows featuring the Sugar Bowl's sugar bowl logo
reminded me of equal parts Disneyland, the Candy Kitchen in The Music Man,
and Pollyanna - a winning combination!!!
|The heart-shaped porthole windows on the swinging, kitchen|
doors remind servers and staff to treat each patron with love.
|The stunning wall mural...honestly we were stunned.|
This little piece of artistry in acrylics is like a
Sunday Afternoon on the Island of Grand Frappe.
|The pink, black, and white linoleum floor|
How many banana split splats has this thing seen?
The menu is filled with delightful illustrations that speak to the frivolity of a novelty
ice cream parlor in the sun-baked Arizona desert. Speaking of illustrations, the
Sugar Bowl plays a supporting role in many of the famed Family Circus comic strips.
|Homemade meatloaf sandwich with a healthy scoop of the house potato salad.|
|A BLT with kettle chips and the obligatory pickle spear.|
|Even the printed napkins are amazing. |
We managed to steal a few extras as thrift-conscious souvenirs.
These were our desserts - a fresh, sparkling limeade and the "Top Hat," a giant, ice
cream-filled profiterole drenched in hot fudge. Can you guess who ordered which dessert?
|I kept asking Mary to pose with her gargantuan treat, but|
she couldn't stop from attacking that thing like it was the
|It's that kind of place...you can't help yourself but just dive right in!|
If I lived in Scottsdale, I have the terrible feeling that I would spend an inordinate amount of time getting a sugar-high at the Sugar Bowl. It is practically perfect in every way, at least in our wacky tacky eyes. I've been accused of looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, but at Sugar Bowl, it simply cannot be helped. It's the pink of perfection!
"The Pink of Perfection" from Walt Disney's Summer Magic
4005 N Scottsdale Rd