Scottsdale’s Ultimate Pit Stop Is The Thumb Gas Station With BBQ, a Gift Shop, and More

The gift shop at The Thumb (photo by Analisa Valdez)

By Analisa Valdez
October 4, 2023

The Thumb’s artisan gift store is filled to the brim with fun items like stickers, games, puzzles, fall-themed house decor, and Arizona merchandise.

On a long drive out in the mountains and in search of a place to fuel up on gas, gifts, and good food? Look no further because beside the McDowell Mountains is the out-of-the-ordinary gas station The Thumb, decked to the nines with a diner, bar, bakery, cafe coffee shop, vast gift shop, and car wash all in one. To the average traveler out in northern Scottsdale, The Thumb looks like—and prides itself as—your average gas station with an attached carwash. But when guests refuel at The Thumb, they’re also greeted by a vast array of goodies, gifts, and the smells of whatever’s cooking behind the kitchen counter. 

(Photo by Analisa Valdez)

The store is broken off into different sections. The entrance is made up of a seating area for the nearby bar attached to their BBQ kitchen where guests can order their delicious, authentic dishes like the No-Sco Burrito made with scrambled eggs, potatoes, three cheese blend, and jalapeno bacon, or the Hangover fries made with cheese sauce, pico de gallo, chopped bacon, sour cream, a sunny-side-up egg, green onions, and a choice of either their famous pulled pork or melt-in-your-mouth sliced brisket. 

A little further past the savory part of the shop happens to be a huge shelf of multi-flavored lemonades, with flavors including kiwi, mango, and even prickly pear. Beside that is an even larger display of the bakery’s sweet pastries, which included cupcakes, pumpkin loaves, slices of vanilla cake, double chocolate chip cookies, and blueberry muffins. 

(Photo by Analisa Valdez)

The sweets don’t stop there. The Thumb also offers a plethora of ice cream and soft serve options. From their $7 “Pig Pen” warm chocolate brownie chunks topped with vanilla soft serve covered in chocolate, caramel, Oreo crumbles, strawberry syrup, and dark chocolate sprinkles, to their famous $9 “Thumb Banana Split” topped with all the fixings, whipped cream, and three maraschino cherries, there is simply no wrong choice to make at The Thumb. 

Even more captivating than the delicious food might just be the decorum crammed onto every free surface within the shop, which is full of dozens of different state license plates and neon signs hanging from the walls. The Thumb’s artisan gift store is filled to the brim with fun items like adorable themed stickers, games and puzzles, fall-themed house decor, Arizona merchandise, and an entire section of the store full of metal artwork and yard decor in the shapes of colorful animals, cars, and wind chimes. 

There were so many gems I found while perusing through the shelves of pumpkin-shaped candles and saguaro-covered artwork. I even enjoyed wandering around the giant fish tank complete with a miniature The Thumb station inside. And before I left, I made sure to order a delicious chai latte from their Thumb Cafe to refuel myself, while my mom refueled the car for the long drive back home. 

The Thumb

9393 E. Bell Road, Scottsdale

Hours: 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily

Website | Instagram 

READ MORE: Make Your Own Rug at This New Arts and Crafts Studio in Tempe


  • Analisa Valdez

    Analisa Valdez is a lifestyle reporter for The Copper Courier. She also covers the arts and entertainment world for the Echo. Analisa has been part of the State Press for three years and is in her third year at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

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