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El Chorro is an iconic Arizona destination for dining, drinks, and unforgettable milestones in Phoenix, AZ. It is a landmark restaurant and lodge that offers a unique and authentic Arizona dining experience with a rich tradition and culinary excellence, nestled between Scottsdale and Phoenix at the base of the stunning Camelback and Mummy mountains.

Historic Overview

The name “El Chorro” comes from Peruvian Spanish, meaning “running stream” or “watering hole.” The original schoolhouse, built by Dr. John C. Lincoln in 1934, was later converted to a restaurant and lodge in 1937 by Jan and Mark Gruber. It became a popular “watering hole” for Camelback Inn’s guests due to the Inn not offering alcohol. Over the years, El Chorro has been a favorite among local celebrities such as Clark Gable, Milton Berle, David Wright, and Frank Lloyd Wright’s family.

In 1952, Joe Miller joined as a bartender and later purchased the lodge with his wife Evie in 1973. During their 36-year tenure as owners, they expanded the restaurant’s capacity from 70 to 200 seats. Noted Valley philanthropist Jacquie Dorrance acquired the restaurant in 2009 and embarked on an extensive remodel while preserving its classic ambiance and charm. In July 2021, Grossman Company Properties and Marc & Rose Hospitality acquired El Chorro, adding to their portfolio of distinguished restaurants and resorts throughout Arizona and California.

Scottsdale Dining Menu

Modern Upgrades and Sustainability

The restaurant’s patio dining experience with famed sticky-buns is a long-standing Phoenix tradition. Recently restored, renovated, and enhanced to preserve its rustic charm while incorporating 21st-century ideals like sustainable practices, El Chorro became the first restaurant in Arizona to earn the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED) Gold Certification. The menu highlights fresh, organic ingredients from local sources like the El Chorro garden located right outside the kitchen. With its rich history, beautiful setting, commitment to sustainability, and delicious Southwestern-inspired cuisine, El Chorro remains a cherished part of Phoenix’s cultural landscape.

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