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  • Julie Levin

Cafe 25:35: Comfort Food and Community

If you live in Buckeye, you probably have heard of Cafe 25:35, located on historic Main Street downtown. The restaurant has been around since 2012. Owner Tony Youngker was born in Buckeye, trained at the Scottsdale Culinary Institute and got his start working for chefs at other restaurants before setting up his own place in his hometown. In his free time, Youngker is a husband and dad of four plus a city council member and vice mayor. When previously asked why he would choose to do business in a less populated area like Buckeye, Youngker answered that it's home and that it’s “God’s country,” according to a post on the Cafe 25:35 Facebook page. Indeed, the cafe’s name comes from Matthew 25:35 which states,"I was hungry and you gave me something to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you invited me in."

That’s certainly Youngker and staff’s philosophy. Cafe 25:35 is all about community and good food. During the start of the pandemic, the restaurant even provided groceries such as eggs, cheese, hamburger meat, turkey and ham to help out families needing supplies. With dine in back to normal along with takeout still available, regulars and first timers alike can sample comfort food classics served up for breakfast and dinner. The former is available 7 to 11 a.m. Monday through Saturday (Cafe 25:35 is closed on Sundays). Everything is made fresh to order, from the breakfast sandwiches to the omelets and baked goods. The JPQ Bowl is a house favorite featuring home fries topped with three over easy eggs, savory house-made sausage gravy and cheddar cheese. The Country Benedict is just as well liked. It’s a buttermilk biscuit with sliced ham, two over easy eggs topped with house made sausage gravy and home fries. You also need to try the Old Fashioned Cinnamon Roll that’s made from scratch and hand rolled.

On the lunch menu, check out hot sandwiches like the Pretzel Reuben made with hot pastrami, sauerkraut, house-made Reuben dressing, and Swiss cheese on a pretzel or the Ultimate Grilled Cheese. That’s a tasty combination of Monterey Jack, cheddar and Gouda cheeses with arugula and pecan smoked bacon on sourdough. Tony’s Garlic Burger is another fave. All burger patties are homegrown from grass-fed, corn finished beef and are a third of a pound each. Tony’s was actually once served for Bob Hope and is topped with provolone cheese, caramelized onions, lettuce, tomato and finished with roasted garlic butter on a split top bun. If you’re looking for something lighter, there’s the Balsamic Greek Salad, Smoked Tomato Bisque and the Chicken Caesar Wrap. Kids are definitely not to be left out with options like Chicken Tenders, PB & J and a Cheese Crisp. Lunch is served until 2 p.m.

Run, don’t walk to Cafe 25:35 as soon as you get a chance! It’s located at 409 E. Monroe Avenue, Buckeye; 623.386.2535;


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