The newest edition to downtown Gilbert is nicely squeezed in between Bergie’s Coffee and Joe’s Real BBQ. Topo is a small walk-up food stall with a huge gopher on the roof (Topo means gopher or mole in Spanish). Leave it to owner Joe Johnston to add a little something fun, unique but weird to the growing downtown Gilbert area. This place draws you in like many of the weird roadside attractions do if you were driving on the Route 66 in northern AZ. What I like most is its very simple menu – burrito, beverage and ice cream. What else do you need in life? You can order a regular burrito (chicken or pork) or have it loco style with elote corn, fritos chips, tomatillo cream and hot sauce. They offer a small bowl of elote for a side. For dessert, they have vanilla or prickly pear ice cream cones that you can dip in chocolate, lime or prickly pear. That’s it – very quick and simple. I came on opening day and it took about 15 min waiting in line to order my food (I’m sure that will decrease over time). Food came out in a few minutes. Joe Johnston greeted people in line and offered us gopher stickers. The kitchen space is small and systems-based. I noticed they weigh every burrito that is made before they serve them. There are a few tables off to the side, but most people use the larger picnic tables next to Joe’s BBQ. This place is unique and fun and opens late. They should get quite a good crowd that just want a quick bite to eat.
1 15 ounce can creamed corn
4 large eggs
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
2 tablespoons sugar
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup flour
Unsalted butter, melted, for serving DIRECTIONS
In a medium bowl, combine the creamed corn, eggs, frozen corn and sugar; season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle in the flour gradually, whisking constantly to avoid lumps, until just combined.
Spray a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Drop tablespoonfuls of the corn mixture into the pan to form small pancakes. Cook until lightly browned on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. Serve with the melted butter.
Rudolph Aue (Rudy) opened Rudy’s Country Store and Bar-B-Q in Texas in 1989. Now Arizona has locations. Rudy’s offers the best of Texas BBQ – brisket, sausage, turkey, ribs, chicken, and pork loin. I took my kids here for a fun evening of getting our hands dirty. So basically you choose your meat and a side or two. I went for the Baby Back Ribs, Corn-on-the-Cob, Rudy’s beans and a cream soda. It was all good and we had a fun time. I love both the Rudy’s original and sissy “sause”. You can buy them both in their store to take home. It’s interesting that they built this location in Chandler across the street from another BBQ restaurant. So I guess we will see a bit of a rivalry in the future on who serves up the better BBQ.