Edible Icon of Arizona - The Golden Skone
Back in the late 60's, Tomas X Smith III, started perfecting a dough to serve at his restaurants. It was a light dough with a good chew and he fried it to golden perfection. His bread, which he called a “skone” was akin to fry bread but delightfully different.
Do NOT get Smith's “skone” confused with the British “scone.” They are in no way similar; scones are dense, crumbly and best suited with tea and jam, whereas skones are versatile and unique, perfect for savory and sweet applications. Smith's skones were a revelation and many would agree. He mastered the dough and opened up several restaurants in the Valley, which he named The Golden Skone. He used his very special bread to create unique and delicious sandwiches that people seemed to love. The eateries soon gained popularity and had a great following. After over 10 years of huge success The Golden Skone restaurants closed in the late 70s.
Fast forward to the beginning of 2020 when Smith's son, Dennis, opened the second coming of The Golden Skone in the SanTan Valley/Queen Creek area. “We opened on February 3, 2020 with 20 employees, we had people waiting at the door” said Dennis. “It was busy and successful because so many people remembered the skone and drove from all over the Valley to relive their childhood memory.”
The new Golden Skone did not disappoint. The family closely guarded the recipe for the dough and they're using it again for outstanding sandwiches and great desserts. Dennis opened the new restaurant with his wife, Stacy and together they tale great pride in creating an excellent product and superior customer experience for every guest that comes through their doors.
“Our food is made from the special dough that my dad took him seven years to perfect and my wife has always enjoyed cooking and she came up with the recipes for our BBQ sauce, salsa, honey butter and fry sauce and chipotle mayo,” said Dennis. “We serve simple food, made fresh to order and the bread is the star.”
The Golden Skone is hand-held comfort food and best sellers include the hamburger/bean and the turkey or roast beef with chipotle mayo sandwiches. The perfect accompaniment to the sandwiches are the piping hot dipper fries, perfect for scooping up ketchup of Stacy's amazing sauces. And you can't leave without one of Golden Skone's dessert bites. “Cinnamon Sugar is everyone's favorite,” said Dennis.
Dennis claims that people are willing to drive for hours for his food because there isn’t anything else quite like his father's skones, and says you have to try one for yourself to know what he's talking about. “Our food and dedication is what makes us unique,” said Dennis. “We are all about the customer experience and we do our best to e run an efficient, organized crew and we all strive to make our guests feel like family.”
Opening up a restaurant just ahead of a global pandemic has put a damper on the the Smith's dreams to re-introduce skones to Arizona. “Our biggest setback has been COVID,” said Smith. “We have all the pieces to be successful, but when a global pandemic hits the month after you open, it makes things more challenging.”
Most would agree, happy memories and creating new ones are what is needed to get through these tough times and The Golden Skone is doing that for people.
“We love seeing the reactions of people trying a skone for the first time or seeing a grown man in tears because his mom used to take him to get a skone when he as a little boy a long time ago,” said Smith. “Hearing these stories is so rewarding and seeing the joy people have when they find out we are back in business is so satisfying.”
We suggest everyone make a trip to the Queen Creek area to taste a piece of AZ culinary history and see what people have been missing for over four decades.