Biscuits Cafe provides a homestyle alternative to fast casual dining

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Let’s be honest, nothing beats a home cooked meal. After a few days of fast food benders consisting of burger chains and tacos with suspect meat, the heart yearns for comfort food reminiscent of mom’s kitchen.

Tempe’s Biscuits Cafe gives students and other patrons just that.

“[It] kind of keeps the kids feeling like they’re still at home,” says Ron Lassiter, general manager at Biscuits Cafe. “Instead of being away from home, they have somewhere they can get good food instead of [going to]McDonalds all the time and getting fast food.”

The brainchild of Ed and Barbara Preston, who met while working at a restaurant in the late ‘60s, the original Biscuits Cafe opened in Oregon City in 1998 with the help of their son, Shannon, a graduate of the Western Culinary Arts School.

Since its inception, Biscuits Cafe has expanded to include numerous locations across Oregon, Washington, and now Arizona. The Grand Canyon state saw the opening of its first Biscuits Cafe in Chandler in 2012, with new locations in Glendale and Tempe opening shortly thereafter.

Lassiter says the Tempe location is a first for the company. Other Biscuits Cafe iterations feature a sit-down family dining style, like Chandler’s restaurant.

“This one is a concept where you get up and order and get your own drinks,” Lassiter says.

While the concept may seem similar to that of a fast food joint, Lassiter says the difference lies with the customer service. It’s close to the style of their other locations, with workers greeting and assisting in the clearing of tables.

The departure in concept does not apply to the food, which Lassiter says sets the chain apart from the competition.

“The difference between our food and one of the other [restaurants]is that a lot of it is from scratch and we still go by the recipes from Oregon,” he says.

While the competition may flash cook their offerings, Biscuits Cafe steers as far away as possible from serving warmed up frozen foods.

“Everything is homemade,” Lassiter says. “We make it from scratch.”

He says the ingredients are grade A quality.

“We do use the best quality. If we’re going to buy meat, they choose the meat that we’re going to buy,” Lassiter says of the owner’s involvement. “It’s usually the best. I’ve never seen them order anything that’s not very good.”

With the Tempe location opening nine months ago and the fall semester ready to begin, Lassiter says students and patrons can expect a celebration of the restaurant’s first year.

“We are going to kind of do an anniversary event,” he says.

Biscuits Cafe, 414 W. University Drive, Tempe, 480.557.9016, biscuitscafe.com, Monday through Saturday, 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Sundays 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

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