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Carlsbad Tavern

Certificate of Excellence
$$ - $$$
Southwestern, Bar, Mexican, Pub
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3313 N Hayden Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251-6626
+1 480-970-8164
11:00 - 02:00
Open now
All hours
Sun 11:00 - 00:00
Mon - Sat 11:00 - 02:00
More Info
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279 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Time of year
Showing 278: English reviews
Phoenix, Arizona
Level Contributor
13 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Discovered this neat place tucked away in the open on Hayden Road. I took my granddaughter and her friends out for dinner as they are experts on mexican style food as that is their favoriate and we all gave this a thumbs up. Great and different style food with a fun setting.

Thank Deborah P
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
17 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 October 2016

Great food, Service okay, atmosphere looked as though it would have been a ton of fun it if was packed busy. We were there for lunch so not too many people were there. Misters were outside which help keep it cool. Guac was so fresh and spicy. Spicy Moscow mules were on point.

Thank David P
CarlsbadTavern, Owner at Carlsbad Tavern, responded to this review

David, Thank you for your feedback about your last visit. I am glad to hear that you enjoyed the guacamole and Spicy Moscow Mule during lunch. Please come back and experience dinner with us next time. Thank you, Andrew Capriola Owner CarlsbadFeedback@gmail.com More 

Florence, Oregon
Level Contributor
69 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 October 2016

My husband and I traveled back to Scottsdale; our first stop was this restaurant. Delicious. We also got to see our favorite server there. Love the outside deck (even during the storm).

Thank Terry H
CarlsbadTavern, Owner at Carlsbad Tavern, responded to this review

Terry, Thanks for making sure you made it to Carlsbad Tavern on your trip! We appreciate the loyalty when visiting from out of town. The staff and I look forward to your next visit. Thank you, Andrew Capriola Owner CarlsbadFeedback@gmail.com More 

Phoenix, Arizona
Level Contributor
74 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 October 2016 via mobile

I've passed this restaurant hundreds of times and we tried it for date night. Really good choice. We sat in the outside courtyard where the tables are nicely spaced, making it seem more spacious because we weren't bumping chairs with the table next door. I had the Cowboy Meatloaf because it had green chilies in it, and it did not... More 

Thank Robert B
CarlsbadTavern, Owner at Carlsbad Tavern, responded to this review

Robert, Thank you for checking us out for your date night. I am glad to hear that the Cowboy Meatloaf was on point as well as your wife's Blackened Chicken Wrap. We are all happy to hear you had a fun time and can't wait for you to come back soon! Thank you, Andrew Capriola Owner CarlsbadFeedback@gmail.com More 

Level Contributor
43 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 August 2016

Very interesting little restaurant. Authentic "New Mexican" food, beautifully prepared. The ambiance is quite intriguing, with an outdoor stream and funky décor and lighting. Highly recommend dining outdoors when the weather permits. Good service (but don't be in a hurry, sometimes they're a little slow). Unique and delicious.

Thank ScottsdaleFoody2008
Phoenix, Arizona
Level Contributor
17 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 August 2016

We go by ourselves and we go with our friends and it's ALWAYS amazing !! Can't beat the heat ! We bought ourselves the red gift "BAT" card and love going back again and again.

Thank Aviator54
Phoenix, Arizona
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 August 2016 via mobile

Went for a late lunch with family. Fantastic cheese crisp, great burgers and salad. The atmosphere is fun, casual and relaxing.

Thank emily h
Phoenix, Arizona
Level Contributor
507 reviews
447 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 164 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2016

The atmosphere is a lot of fun and almost reminds me of Disney. They have a big patio with an impressive water feature. Inside it looks very cave-like. The Cuisine is Tex-Mex Inspired. We started with margaritas and mine was made with an old looking lime. For Dinner I had the Filet. My filet had very nice looking grill marks... More 

1 Thank TheSaltyPepper
Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
41 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2016

we visited here in Sept 2014 and the food was mixed, how ever on our return visit in July 2016 we decided to give it another try as we can walk across from Sunscape villa's where we were staying. Well what a difference! we had two meals here and not only are their meals very reasonably priced but they are... More 

Thank lauralou1
Level Contributor
204 reviews
142 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 August 2016

We had a number of dishes and they all were excellent. The tortilla soup was one of the best we have tasted--and had a little kick to it. The crab cakes and pot stickers were also very very good. Unique taste to all their foods and quite fun and good. The setting is like the Caveman suite at the Madonna... More 

Thank azpoet

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    4 of 5 bubbles
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Average prices
Southwestern, Bar, Mexican, Pub
Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, After-hours
Restaurant features
Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Reservations
Good for
Groups, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Kids, Child-friendly, Bar Scene, Romantic, Cheap Eats
Open Hours
11:00 - 00:00
11:00 - 02:00
11:00 - 02:00
11:00 - 02:00
11:00 - 02:00
11:00 - 02:00
11:00 - 02:00
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 3313 N Hayden Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251-6626
  • Location: United States  >  Arizona (AZ)  >  Central Arizona  >  Scottsdale
  • Phone Number: +1 480-970-8164
Founded with the mission of bringing unique New Mexican cuisine to Scottsdale diners, Carlsbad Tavern & Restaurant has been serving up authentic, spicy and flavorful food for nearly two decades.

Created by Michael P. Capriola and named in homage to Carlsbad Caverns National Park in southern New Mexico, the restaurant opened in 1995 at Scottsdale Road and Earll Drive. The original location was developed with an eclectic New Mexican theme, including bats, Mexican movie posters, Roswell memorabilia and a newspaper menu called The Daily Guano. In 1998, the restaurant moved to Hayden Road, just south of Osborn where the bat cave theme was further developed, making the most of the water feature, The Guano Canal, on the patio and providing a cave-like interior in the dining room and bar.

Carlsbad Tavern’s philosophy centers on providing guests with an entertaining environment, excellence in the kitchen and friendly, efficient service. While the sign touts New Mexican “grub,” the quality of food and attention to detail in preparation has always been of utmost importance. Many of the original and core dishes are still being served today. Favorites (carne adovada, osso bucco, crab-stuffed poblanos) requested by regulars – aka “bat fans” – are daily specials.

Over the years, Carlsbad Tavern’s menu has consistently won accolades on the local and national level, including:
• 20 Places for Hispanic Dishes: Enchantment Platter, Arizona Republic, September 2011
• 10 Favorite Spicy Dishes: Habanero Cheeseburger, Phoenix New Times, September 2011
• Top 100 Dishes in the Valley: New Mexican Potstickers, Phoenix New Times, August 2011
• One of 51 Ways to Beat the Heat, Phoenix Magazine, July 2011
• Best Burger in Phoenix/Scottsdale in Travel and Leisure Magazine, May 2011
• One of the Top 85 restaurants in Phoenix Magazine, January 2011
• Habanero Cheeseburger, Best Burger in Arizona, Food Network Magazine, 2009
• Best Restaurant, Food Lover’s Guide to the Valley; Phoenix Magazine, 2007
• Best Pork Dish for Carne Adovada, 50 Best Dishes in the Valley; Phoenix New Times, Jan. 2009
• Best Patio Dining, Best of Phoenix; Phoenix New Times, 2001

In addition, Carlsbad Tavern prides itself on providing locally-brewed and micro-brewed beers on draft, as well as a comprehensive wine list with wine pairings suggested on all entrees. Happy hours offer a discounted menu, and a reverse happy hour and menu in the evenings draws out industry workers from throughout the Valley, who appreciate the atmosphere, the quality of food and the company.

Carlsbad Tavern continues today under the ownership of Andrew Capriola and Judith Merritt. As a family-run restaurant, Carlsbad Tavern welcomes all ages and offers excellent food and service in a relaxed and welcoming environment for casual dining, special occasions, group events and parties and just hanging around the bat cave with a draft beer.

Questions & Answers

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over a year ago

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Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?