Originally Published: March 14, 2014 6 a.m.
Nearly everything at Dad's Drive-up Diner is made from scratch.
It's one of the reasons the mom and pop drive-through restaurant has continued to be a popular landmark in Prescott Valley. Owners Bruce and Linda St. Thomas have owned and operated the local business since Saint Patrick's Day 2007. Located at 8617 E. Florentine Road, the restaurant uses all fresh ingredients, including bread baked on site, to ground beef made by Bruce himself.
The St. Thomas family moved to Arizona about 20 years ago from New Jersey, where Bruce operated two hot dog trucks. They owned a franchise business in Scottsdale before deciding to move north to Prescott Valley.
"Bruce is very creative, so we do everything we want to do now. Everything is made from scratch. We make the French fries from real potatoes. All of my salads are fresh. All the stuff with our smoker is fresh. When I have macaroni and coleslaw, everything is made from scratch," Linda said.
She also uses her mother's recipes for the restaurant's dessert offerings.
While the restaurant is a drive-through only establishment, a single picnic table is located outside for diners. Drivers don't speak through a speaker at the diner, but speak instead to either Linda or Bruce in person.
"It's not your typical drive-thru," Bruce said. "Everything is top of the line. I even bake my own bread. If I don't feel good about something that goes out the window I won't sell it."
Dad's Drive-up Diner offers a signature Italian sandwich, one of their biggest sellers. Other customer favorites include their assortment of plump hamburgers and smoked meats. Hamburgers include a double burger, a green chili cheeseburger, a bacon cheeseburger, and more. Besides the Italian sandwich, the turkey sandwich is another customer favorite. More than a quarter pound of meat can be found on their six-inch sandwiches, compared to sandwiches available at chain restaurants, Bruce said. Their grilled, oversized hot dogs are another favorite pick among the diner's regular customers. Hot dogs include the chili dog, made with homemade chili, kraut dogs, their Chicago dog and others.
Sandwiches include chicken salad, BLTs, and club sandwiches. Salads include the antipasto, made with ham, salami, cappacola, mortadella and provolone cheese, banana peppers, and spices; and the chef salad, made with ham, turkey and choice of cheese.
Daily specials are posted on the restaurant's website, found online at www.dadsdriveupdiner.com.
Specials can also be found on a sandwich board located outside the drive-through window. Specials consist of items made from the restaurant's new smoker, and include smoked brisket, smoked pork and smoked chicken breast. They also smoke their bacon.
"Everybody is raving about the bacon," Bruce explained.
Other specials include a Swiss mushroom burger, a turkey, bacon and avocado sandwich, and more. While lunch is served all day, including the morning hours, breakfast is only served from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. The restaurant will also offer breakfast specials, including a bacon burrito for $4. Other breakfast items include bacon and eggs, ham and eggs and more. Cheese can also be added on request to breakfast orders.
For faster service, Linda recommended calling ahead at 928-775-4250 to place an order in advance.
"We appreciate that. It's just the two of us and we get busy," she said.