By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski
Linda Nash acknowledges that diners at her popular Barrio Queen restaurant are sometimes in a hurry. She and co-owner Steve Rosenfield listened to their guests and opened Familia: Barrio Cosita in December.
Spanish for “little barrio,” Barrio Cosita has big flavor and goals.
“We offer a different menu, but it’s still authentic Mexican food,” Nash says. “It has a nice, little neighborhood feel.”
The new fast-casual concept opened in a 2,300-square-foot space at 15801 N. Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard, Suite 100, Scottsdale.
“We chose the location because it’s right off the freeway at the Loop 101 and Frank Lloyd Wright,” she explains. “We thought it would be a good place for guests to stop if they’re going home or on their way to work.”
Barrio Cosita brings the traditional flavors of Mexico in a trendy, urban vibe, boasting a full bar and lower price point than Barrio Queen.
“We sell tacos and burritos,” Nash says. “They’re different than what we offer at Barrio Queen. We didn’t want to compete with Barrio Queen. There’s a Sonoran hot dog, which is one of my favorites.”
The restaurant features a vibrant interior with a brass-plated bar and bright and colorful art installations. Seating is available indoors and out, and menu highlights include blue corn tortilla tacos with options like pulled pork, fried fish, “vegetariano,” chorizo and beef barbacoa ($13/three for most), as well as burritos with a choice of chicken tinga, Puerco bohemio, beef barbacoa ($9 to $11).
Large plates include several creative options, such as the pulled pork grilled cheese with Noble Bread sourdough, Oaxaca cheese, cotija, served with a side of tomato sauce ($11); Sonoran dog with Noble Bread bun, all-beef hot dog, topped with diced onion, tomato, mustard, crispy bacon and mayo ($7); and taco salad, romaine topped with black bean, corn, tomato, red onion, avocado ranch, Oaxaca cheese and tortilla strips ($9).
The kids menu offers chicken tenders, rolled quesadilla, hot dog, or bean and cheese burrito, all of which are $6.
Similar to Barrio Queen, Barrio Cosita has a robust handcrafted cocktail menu, with several margarita options ($8 to $12), a Mexican-style red sangria ($10), the Café Con Piquete (1921 Crema de Tequila, cold brew, horchata, whipped cream and shaved Mexican chocolate) ($9), as well as wine and beer.
Happy hour is offered all day Monday through Friday and features $2 off cocktails, beer and wine at the bar. Tuesdays mark Taco Tuesday, with three tacos and two sides for $9.99.
“Steve and I are really focused on a couple things: guest service and the quality of the food,” she says. “Even in this challenging hiring environment, we really push because we’re consumers and we like to dine out.
“You never want to go somewhere and have someone district you by having a less-than-desirable meal. It throws off your whole day. It doesn’t matter if the person is a dishwasher or an executive of the company, you’re respected in the same light. You’re equally as important as the director of operations.”
15801 N. Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard,
Suite 100, Scottsdale
11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday to Thursday
11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday