Restaurants around Tucson have opened back up sporadically (if at all). This includes a number of restaurants downtown, where foot traffic is starting to increase with the return of the University of Arizona school year. One mainstay you may have noticed hasn’t opened back up is Maynards, the large space across from Club Tucson’s outdoor patio. That is, until now.
Maynards will re-open its doors on Friday, August 27 all while providing those who walk through the doors with a new experience. Over the course of the extended closure, the staff at Maynards considered ways to update. With nothing else to do over the course of the last year and a half but focus on self-improvement, that is exactly what the team at Maynards went out to do.
There have been some slight decor changes inside the restaurant, but due to the bar’s positioning within the building, there wasn’t a ton of seating adjustments that could be made. Instead, visitors to the restaurant once open will instead discover an update in the menu.
Most of the additions will center around the utilization of locally grown, harvested, or raised food. Nearly everything on the menu now will start with a local staple, which is then built out from there. One the kitchen staff is particularly excited about is a new menu item called Top Knot Chicken. This will take advantage of an in-house chorizo, served alongside several fresh, locally harvested vegetables.
One of the features that has always stood out about Maynards is its vegan or vegetarian menu options. It caters to just about all food restrictions and requirements, which is why some of the updates include new non-meat offerings like the mushroom ravioli, which the staff believes will satisfy both meat-eaters and non-meat eaters alike.
While changes to the menu have taken place, some of the biggest tweaks in Maynards’ presentation have taken place outside of the restaurant. Seating was, for the most part, exclusively interior prior to the shutdown. Now, however, there is ample outdoor dining space. Work was done to create a comfortable outdoor eating experience that didn’t just feel like guests were sitting on a random sidewalk or part of the connected parking lot. Aged barrels with potted plants on top surround the sidewalk portion of the patio, which helps partition it away from the rest of downtown’s foot traffic (and give it a more secluded feeling). The area next to the parking lot also has its own barriers, which helps limit any sound from cars while presenting an excellent view of the Catalina Mountains.
There are new hours for the restaurant as well. Maynards will be open just Wednesday through Sunday and will not be open on Monday or Tuesday. During open days the restaurant will serve guests between 4 PM and 9 PM. A happy hour will be running during the first two hours of business, so for any guests looking to take advantage of food and drink specials, it is necessary to stop by earlier in the day.
Maynards is owned and operated by Hotel Congress. The full menu is available on the Hotel Congress website. However, some of the current seasonal items to look forward to include its foie gras al pastor, Flannery hanger steak, poached grouper, raspado of nopal (which comes with prickly pear, mesquite milk, and creosote), terrine of dark chocolate and nuts, and the madeleines a la minute.
Reservations are generally not required for a table, as there is now plenty of socially distanced seating available both inside and out. Just make sure to stop by on any other day besides Monday and Tuesday.
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