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Waiting on an arrival at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport, Terminal 4

I’m at Sky Harbor for a little while this afternoon, waiting to pick up my aunt arriving from New England. Terminal 4 has seen some vast improvements in its food selection over the past several years, but I’m seldom here long enough to enjoy them. Many of the national chains have been replaced by local vendors, and the overall quality of the offerings has increased as a result.

However, a number of the new restaurants seem to be fighting for the pretentious armchair foodie demographic, and that’s disappointing for a guy who just wants a coffee and a muffin after eight hours in the salt mines. I would have liked a chocolate chip muffin, but what I found was more like an organic-fair-trade-chocolate-cracked-whole-oat-flax-seed muffin. Instead of blueberry, it was wild-blueberry-lemon-zest-quinoa or something like that. Yuck.

In the end, I settled for a down-to-earth Oreo cookie shake from Smashburger, one of the few nationally recognized brands in Terminal 4. I then followed up with an old-fashioned drip coffee from Lola, a local coffee shop that now has an outpost in the airport. That’ll take the edge off until my aunt arrives.

Curt Gilman
Curt Gilman