We discovered The Thumb in May 2018 — featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives — when we visited the Phoenix area with our daughter. She was going to graduate college in August and move to Arizona for a career in the financial world (which she despised.) Anyway, during our trip to Arizona, we discovered a gas station, car wash, gift shop, wine shop — that also serves the most unbelievable barbecue.
Yesterday, after a hike at Lake Pleasant, my husband and I were starving. Our car was filthy….so we remembered The Thumb. What a perfect way to top off a hike.
I wrote this after discovering The Thumb in 2018:
While spending the weekend in Arizona, our purpose was to check out where our daughter will start her career. While driving to dinner one evening, our car told us to get gas and directed us to the closest gas station. (I love that feature on our car because I get busy and don’t realize I’m close to running out of fuel.)
The car sent us to The Thumb. While my husband pumped gas, I noticed the two-story building that was unlike any gas station I’d ever seen before. I witnessed a stream of people leaving the building with white plastic bags with red lettering. Waving in the breeze were banners that said “BBQ.”
What kind of barbecue is found inside a gas station, I wondered.
I left the car to check it out.
I was surprised to see a gift shop filled with all sorts of fun items, from Pug cha cha to lots of cactus cookie jars, shot glasses, cards and miscellaneous stuff.
There was a pretty extensive wine section plus a bakery that looked so mouthwatering. I should have tried the snickerdoodles or homemade pop tarts! They looked scrumptious. One side of the building had a huge chandelier with tables for those eating in, plus a patio with more tables for dining al fresco. A huge aquarium had several people entranced.
Then there was the barbecue. People were lined up to order and people were stocking up on the six flavors of sauce.
We ordered a pound of brisket, some coleslaw and tried a few sauces. We both decided the original was best. After getting our gas we headed back to the condo we were staying in and surprised our daughter with an amazing dinner from the gas station!
The Thumb’s website says it’s “Just your average gas station…”
It’s been featured on Guy Fieri’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” on Food Network, too.
If you happen to be driving through Scottsdale on the 101, I highly recommend a stop at the Thumb for a car wash, bakery, bottle of wine, barbecue, gifts — and oh yes, gas.
What unusual gas stations or diners have you discovered during your travels?