When restaurateur Melissa Maggiore Meyer was a guest on the AZ Big Podcast, one of the themes that ran throughout the conversation was “family” and the importance of food when it comes to family — especially Italian families.
Some of the strongest memories that fill the minds and spirits of those who grew up in Italian families are those of family dinners — in particular, Sunday dinners … which sometimes stretched from lunchtime until bedtime.
Maggiore Meyer, the daughter of the late, great Tomaso Maggiore, founder of Tomaso’s Italian Restaurant, brings those family dinner memories to life with The Italian Daughter Cucina + Cocktails in North Scottsdale.
“The Italian Daughter is a restaurant concept that I believe my father would have been really excited to see,” Maggiore Meyer says. “I want people to experience the joys of our authentic Italian cuisine in an atmosphere full of music and energy.”
The food at The Italian Daughter is as authentic and amazing as any you will find this side of Sicily. The made-from-scratch menu focuses on handcrafted pasta, stone fired pizzas, seafood, veal dishes, and new twists and tastes on Italian classics.
The best thing about The Italian Daughter is that you could literally throw a dart and the menu and walk away will a belly filled with the best Italian meal you’ll ever have in Metro Phoenix. Some cannot-stop-thinking-about menu items:
• The Sicilian Rice Balls ($14) stuffed with bolognese (just like Grandma Gossie used to make) are a great way to start you meal. But be careful. You’ll want to eat so many, you may end up with a food baby. Don’t do that because there is too much deliciousness ahead of you.
• Maggiore Meyer says she brought back pizza during the pandemic because it was an easy meal for people to carry out of the restaurant. But The Italian Daughter’s stone-fired Margherita Pizza ($14) and Tre Carne Pizza ($16) will more than satisfy even the most discriminating pizza lover. Plus, there is a gluten-free dough option available.
• That brings us to the handcrafted pastas. Where do we start? The Butternut Squash Ravioli ($19), Papa’s Bolognese Mafalda ($19), Linguine Frutti di Mare ($28), and Spaghetti “Picchiu Pacchiu” ($18) are all masterpieces that would make Michelangelo proud. But each pasta dish is a culinary work of art.
• For entrées, the Braised Veal Osso Buco ($40), Sicilian Mixed Grille ($42), Eggplant Torte + Gnocchi Pesto ($23), and Chicken Parmigiana ($25) are all so … well, let’s just say you’ll never fuhgettaboutit.
Beyond the food, The Italian Daughter’s incredible desserts, piano lounge — with live music five nights each week — and iconic Italian craft cocktails will make you want to return time after time.
But isn’t that what family dinner is all about? And with The Italian Daughter, every night night makes it feel like you’re going back home. Mangiamo.
The Italian Daughter
Location: 23655 N. Scottsdale Rd., Suite 120 Scottsdale
Hours: Monday-Thursday and Sunday 3 p.m.-10 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 3 p.m.-11 p.m.
Happy Hour: Daily 3 p.m.-9:30 p.m.