Southwest Cider Festival offers sips of local & national ciders

With the popularity of ciders the last few years, local cideries decided to showcase this refreshing beverage. The inaugural Southwest Cider Festival takes place on Saturday Nov. 10th at Cider Corps in Mesa. At the 5-hour festival Cider Corps will pour Arizona’s Stoic Cider & Crush Craft Cider and ciders from Colorado, Texas, Washington, California and New York.Operation Homefront

Guests will also be able to sample bites from local food trucks and enjoy live music.

“People are so interested to learn about and experiment with cider and that’s what this event is all about – a chance for everyone to continue to learn, sample and collaborate,” said festival organizer Josh Duren.

Brothers Josh and Jason opened Cider Corps last year and have produced over 70 ciders and have a loyal legion of fans. They push the envelope when it comes to making cider and helped put Arizona on the cider map.Tickets for the festival are $50 per with a portion going to Operation Homefront. A non-profit Operation Homefront helps local veterans and their families. Tickets include up to 20 cider samples and $5 food truck credit. The festival goes from 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

More details are at their Facebook page.

Cider Corps is at 31 S. Robson #103 Mesa 85210

 

Local restaurants raise money for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and three local Phoenix restaurants are raising money all month-long. By purchasing a featured menu item you will be helping to fight a disease that affects us all. Both non-profits are also local to the Phoenix area.

Don’t be a chump, check for a lump!……

……is the name a of a local non-profit that helps fight breast cancer through education, prevention and direct assistance. They provide free wigs, mammograms and treatment and is benefiting from Babbo Italian Eatery. When you order the Pasta Valducci part of the proceeds will be donated for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Enjoy a bowl of penne pasta tossed with Kalamata olives, artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes and garlic in a pink sauce. Babbo has a goal of raising $10,000.00 during the month-long fundraiser with the dish available at all 8 locations. For more information visit Babbo’s website and http://www.checkforalump.org/

Breast Cancer Awareness Month at Farm & Craft

Save Your Melons is the month-long fundraiser at Farm & Craft in Scottsdale and Phoenix. Both locations are donating a portion of proceeds from their Forbidden Fruits(watermelon) drinks to I’mpact One for the month of October. Scottsdale’s location is at 4302 N. Scottsdale Rd 85251 and Phoenix is at The Colony 5538 N. 7th St. Phoenix 85014. http://impactone.pink/

Drink Pink at Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row

The Gilbert location will also donate to I’mpact One a portion of the proceeds from Dierks Pink Lemonade. Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row is at 323 N. Gilbert Rd. Gilbert 85234.

Famous Dave’s BBQ offers “Quick Que” lunch at Mesa Riverview location

With the rise of the “fast casual” dining concept full service restaurants need to adapt to the customer on the go. Famous Dave’s BBQ recently debuted their “Quick Que” lunch option at their Mesa Riverview location giving customers the option to if in a hurry. Don’t worry customers in no hurry can still enjoy a full service experience they’ve come to expect.

“We’re thrilled to now be offering another means to serve our guests premium-quality, succulent BBQ right out of the pit,” said local franchisee John Erlandson. “Meet the Pitmasters while they hand carve the meat right in front of you and experience the difference at Dave’s. We’ll have made from scratch sides on the line as well as coolers of beer, sodas, homemade lemonade and waters to wash it down, pay for your meal and get in and out easily.”

Famous Dave's BBQ
Famous Dave’s ribs

The “Quick Que” lunch is available from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m Monday – Friday  and lets customers head up to the “Quick Que Station” where the can choose from the menu board above. Traditional Famous Dave’s dishes along with daily specials that can include tri-tip sliced beef and Wagyu beef ribs.

Famous Dave’s BBQ at Mesa Riverview is on Dobson Rd. off Loop 101. For other valley location and information head to  http://www.famousdavesbbq.com/

The new The Latin Kitchen has a familiar taste to it.

It’s been 3 years since the closing of Phoenix favorite Havana Cafe by owner BJ Hernandez and fans of her Latin style cuisine were wondering if we’d ever taste her food again. Thank god Hernandez is back in the kitchen as co-owner of the recently opened The Latin Kitchen in Mesa with her recipe book dusted off and cooking.

The Latin Kitchen
Photos courtesy of The Latin Kitchen

The Latin Kitchen dishes

Hernandez will be serving her popular made from scratch Cuban cuisine along with Latin American dishes that regulars of Hernandez’s cooking will recognize along with new dishes. Fans will smile with the return of her signature Cuban sandwich, empanadas, Ropa Vieja and more from here ever-changing menu.

Lighter and hearty dishes are also available taking into consideration people’s dietary needs including gluten-free wraps and salads.

Don’t worry dessert will be served including Flan, Tres Leches and Lime Tart. After a successful lobster dinner recently special dinners are planned including a pig roast, “Havana Nights” and Paella dinner.

A full bar is available that will feature Latin inspired cocktails such as the Mojito, sangria and other classic cocktails.

New to Mesa

Why Mesa after the success in north Scottsdale and along the Camelback Corridor in Phoenix Hernadez says “Originally I started looking in Scottsdale, but the rents were too high for what I wanted to do, a casual place where you could eat delicious, healthy and authentic food at a great price.” She then partnered with restaurant industry veteran Elisa Nolan to get the new restaurant opened.

Near the Tempe border The Latin Kitchen seats 115 up to people in two dining rooms and the bar. Currently serving only lunch Hernandez will serve dinner once the summer comes to an end.

The Latin Kitchen is close to the Loop 101 at 540  W. Broadway in Mesa. For more information call 480-306-7266 or check out their website.

This Saturday’s Suds & Slides is summer camp for the big kids

Most of us remember how much fun it was to go away to summer camp and be with friends. Now that were big kids, this Saturday’s Suds & Slides summer camp themed event let’s us re-live summers of our youth. Mesa’s Riverview Park will host the 21+ event from 5-10 p.m. with water slides, beer pong, giant pillow fights and a lot more.

Suds & Slides
All photos courtesy of Jen Pruett at HDE Agency

Tickets for Suds & Slides

Tickets for the evening will gain you access to unlimited fun and games. Food and drinks can be purchased separately. Ticket’s are $15 online, $20 at the door and groups of 4 can purchase tickets for $50, a savings of $30 off day of pricing. Tickets for the Suds & Slides can be purchased here.

A portion of the proceeds will go to Foster Hope Foundation that helps to inspire foster children. The foundation provides supplies, classes, lectures, activities and workshops to children within the foster care system.

Pita Jungle launches Seasonal Crafts Menu June 19th

People want options for their diet and next weeks launch of their Seasonal Crafts Menu, Pita Jungle gives customers options. With 7 new dishes, 7 protein options and 3 sides guests will have plenty of options to mix and match with.

4 new drinks will also be available on their cocktail menu along with a new Vegan and Gluten-Free menu.

Veggie-Quinoa Stir Fry with Kimchi. All photos courtesy of Pita Jungle.

Seasonal Crafts Menu

Whether your diet allows you to eat all on the menu or you prefer Vegan or Gluten Free dishes all diets are accommodated.

  • Avocado Hummus Tostada: baked corn tortilla, avocado hummus, Tuscan kale and cabbage slaw, avocado, pickled onions, garlic, pico de gallo, jungle damage green sriracha and cumin-yogurt sauce
  • Barley & Beluga Lentil Fetoosh Bowl: toasted barley, beluga lentils, Tuscan kale, roma tomatoes, Persian cucumbers, red bell pepper, radish, red and green onions, garlic, fresh jalapeno, fresh mint, roasted pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries, pomegranate vinaigrette and pita chips
  • Veggie-Quinoa Stir Fry with Kimchi:  red quinoa, broccoli, carrots , mushrooms, baby spinach, red onions,  minced garlic and ginger, cage free egg, jungle damage green sriracha and kimchi
  • Crouching Kale & Hidden Berry Bowl: Tuscan kale, blueberry, pomegranate seeds, carrots, fresh jalapeno, white and red cabbage, red bell peppers, garlic, ginger, fresh mint, toasted almonds and Thai-tahini dressing
  • Avocado & Garbanzo Southwest Bowl: avocado, chickpeas, red quinoa, roma tomatoes, Persian cucumbers, celery, roasted jalapenos, organic blue corn chips, pickled onions, fresh mint and parsley, minced garlic, pumpkin seeds, cumin and herb-honey-apple-cider vinaigrette
  • Brownie Ice Cream Sandwich: gluten-free brownie, vanilla ice cream, strawberry and blueberry
  • Super Perfect Yogurt Delight: barley, pomegranate seeds, pistachio, blueberry, local AZ honey, Greek yogurt, cinnamon and rose-water

    Avocado Hummus Tostada

Sides and Protein Add-Ons

Add a protein or experience one of these new side dishes to satisfy your appetite.

Sides:

  • Lebanese Potato Salad (contains eggs)
  • Gingered Roasted Sweet Potatoes
  • Barley & Beluga Lentils

Protein Add-Ons:

  • Wood-Fired Norwegian Salmon
  • Grilled Marinated All-Natural Chicken Breast
  • Mediterranean Meatballs (grass-fed beef)
  • Taco Style Ground Beef (grass-fed)
  • Organic Baked Marinated Tofu
  • Cage-Free Skillet or Boiled Egg
  • Baked Falafel

To find a Pita Jungle location near go to http://www.pitajungle.com/

Volstead Public House continues vegan menu as it becomes Nile Cafe

Update: The February 28th groundbreaking has been postponed. Stay tuned for when It will be re-scheduled. The $5 Reggie special & Free coffee w/ purchase of t-shirt will still be honored on the 28th.

The downtown Mesa music scene wouldn’t be the same without the Nile Theater. To keep going strong they’re going to give their vegan restaurant Volstead Public House a new name, Nile Cafe. The new name will begin efforts to re-brand and market the theater in the 21st century.

All photos courtesy of Boyd Harrington

Starting on February 28th renovations will begin on the facade outside the theater with a groundbreaking ceremony with Mesa Mayor John Giles and others in attendance.

“The logo and joining of the café and theater are final seal on the work we have been doing since taking over the space 7 years ago,” said Michelle Donovan of the Mantooth Group. “The rebranded ties all our efforts together into one complete package and gives us room to grow into what The Nile really has always been – a focal point of entertainment and community for Downtown Mesa.”

The Nile Cafe food specials

After the 10:30 a.m. ceremony the new Nile Cafe will offer an all day food and drink special from their all plant-based menu. Guest can enjoy a FREE cup of coffee when you purchase a new Nile t-shirt and the popular Reggie vegan grilled cheese sandwich will be available for only $5.The menu created by Donovan offers vegan diners dishes like The Squawker Texas Ranger ($9.99) with vegan chicken drenched in buffalo sauce, My Boy Blue Sandwich ($9.99) with blueberry BBQ fried chicken, and The Philly ($8.50) with vegan steak sautéed in green and yellow peppers, onions and the café’s special marinade. The café also has daily scones and pastries, coffee, tea and beer.

The Nile music scene

The Nile dates back to 1924 as movie and music venue with multiple music genre’s playing there to fans. 4 bands will return on the 28th to help solidify The Nile Theater as a cornerstone of downtown Mesa. Senses Fail, Reggie , The Full Effect and Have Mercy have played The Nile in the last 20 years and return to the stage to celebrate the day.

“These groups bring back a lot of memories from coming to The Nile when I was in high school and college, and now as the owner,” Donovan said

The Nile is at 105 W. Main Street in Mesa 85210 TheNileTheater.com

Phoenix area restaurants salute veterans on Veteran’s Day

I’ve met a few veterans in my travels and in addition to loving the red, white and blue they love to eat. On Veteran’s Day, Saturday November 11th several Phoenix area restaurants are saluting active and retired military personnel with discounted or free food. Here is a list of who and what is being offered.

Fired Pie

In support of veterans both active and retired, Fired Pie will be offering a free entrée to all vets who show their ID or are in uniform.

Miracle Mile Deli

All veterans both active and retired will receive 10% off their purchase by letting Miracle Mile Deli know they are a veteran at the register.

Miracle Mile Deli has been a staple in the Valley for 68 years. The locally owned restaurant is at 4433 N. 16th Street in Phoenix.

Famous Dave’s BBQ

Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que in Phoenix would like to thank all former and current Military personnel for their dedication and commitment to our country by offering a FREE “Two Meat Salute.” Hours are 11 am to 11 pm.

The “Two Meat Salute” is a choice of two different meats, including St Louis-Style Ribs, Georgia Chopped Pork, Texas Beef Brisket, Country-Roasted or barbeque Chicken, Traditional or Boneless Chicken Wings, Southside Rib Tips, Hot Link Sausage, Chicken Tenders or Beer-Battered Cod, served with a Corn Bread Muffin and a choice of one side.

To find one of the 4 Phoenix area Famous Dave’s BBQ near you click here.

Original Breakfast House

Original Breakfast House is honoring those who serve and have served. Veterans and Active Duty members eat free from the menu below or take $11 off any menu item.

There will be live music outside, along with free donuts and coffee. November 11 will be a real party at Original Breakfast House!

Cajun Andouille sausage and cheddar scramble  11.50                        Pork Chops and Eggs  11.50                                                                       Machaca Scramble  11.50                                                                                  Pulled Pork Hash and Eggs  11.50                                                                               Pumpkin Pecan Pancakes  9.95

Original Breakfast House is at 13623 N 32nd St, Phoenix

Dave & Buster’s

 In the bustling heart of Tempe Marketplace is Dave & Buster’s who will be offering all active and retired veterans a 10% off discount when they show ID when making the purchase.

Luci’s Urban Concepts

In honor of Veteran’s Day, each one of Luci’s Urban Concepts will be offering 10% off any purchase at all locations to veterans who are in uniform or show proof of id.

Luci’s Urban Concepts includes Luci’s Healthy Marketplace which is at 1590  Bethany Home Road and  a couple of miles away Pomelo at The Orchard at 7100 North 12th Street, Phoenix.

Veteran's Day
Photo courtesy of Steve Shankman

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria is honoring this day with 15% for all vets and military personnel. This offer is valid 11/10 and 11/11. Use the link to find a Grimaldi’s near you.

Hopdoddy Burger Bar

This year, the burger joint will offer its best deal yet – a free burger to military veterans. This offer will be available to those who have served or are currently serving in the armed forces. Find a Hopdoddy near you.

Organ Stop Pizza

Enjoy a free concert to celebrate and honor our veterans, with an emphasis on patriotic music, (other Organ Stop fan favorites will be played also) and a demonstration/explanation of OSP’s Mighty Wurlitzer Theatre Pipe Organ.

*No food service will be offered other than beverages and ice cream and they will be available to purchase at current menu pricing.

Organ Stop Pizza only accepts cash/checks. No debit/credit cards accepted.
1:30pm – 3:00pm, doors open at 1:15pm on Veteran’s Day, Saturday, Nov 11
Organ Stop Pizza, 1149 E. Southern Ave., Mesa

 

Cider Corps

The new cidery in Mesa will be holding an open house on Veteran’s Day. Here is the link to my October post with the details.

 

 

Arizona’s first cidery, Cider Corps to host Veteran’s Day Open House

I love a good cider as nothing beats it on a hot summer day and with the autumns seasonal foods and holidays. Just in time for the holiday season Arizona’s first cidery,  Cider Corps will open its doors for its first public event on Saturday November 11th from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. for its Veteran’s Day Open House.

Cider Corps open house

The veteran owned cidery is just off Main St. in downtown Mesa and the open house is two blocks from the finish line of Mesa’s Veteran’s Day Parade. From 10-11 a.m. guests a can come by and get a mulled cider or coffee to go so they can watch the parade.

Brothers Josh and Jason Duren will be showing off their small batch hard ciders, non-alcoholic mulled ciders and cold brew coffee during the open house. A food truck will be on hand to serve food to guests and tours of the cidery will be given.

Small batch “Pie Ciders” will be available for purchase in Cider Corps limited edition 32 ounce “crowlers” or you can bring your own growler. Cost of the ciders to go will range from $12- $20.

“Pie Ciders” will remind guests of their favorite holiday pies like mixed berry and pumpkin. Cold Brew cider will also be available.

Cider Corps ciders are currently available at over 30 bars and restaurants around Phoenix, Tucson and Prescott.

Veterans community spot

Jason is a retired Sargent in the United States Marine Corps and will be speaking about his time in the service and how he and Josh plan to help veterans through Cider Corps. The cidery is dedicated to be used by veterans and veteran organizations as a community gathering place.

“To open the taproom this way is the embodiment of Cider Corps’ mission: Drink great ciders, honor great sacrifice,” said Josh. “We want it to be a place for veterans to be honored through times of awareness.”

The parade and Veteran’s Day Open House are important part of the brothers devotion to cider and veterans as they started making cider a s a hobby when Jason returned home from Afghanistan with 2 traumatic brain injuries from IED blasts.

Cider Corps is at 31 S. Robson Dr. Mesa 85210.

 

 

Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que offers Two Meat Salute for military personnel on Veteran’s Day

Veteran’s Day is a day when we thank all veterans, active & retired, for their service in defending our freedoms and protecting us from those who want to do harm to us. Friday November 11th is Veteran’s Day and Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que  offers all veterans a Free BBQ meal at there 4 Phoenix area locations.

Photo courtesy of Famous Dave's
Photo courtesy of Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que

The two meat salute

From 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. all military personnel with proof of service & photo ID will be treated to “The Two Meat Salute”, a meal consisting of 2 meats that include a choice of St. Louis-Style Ribs, Georgia Chopped Pork, Texas Beef Brisket, Country Roasted or Barbeque Chicken, Traditional or Boneless Chicken Wings, Southside Rib Tips, Hot Link Sausage, Chicken Tenders or Beer-Battered Cod, served with a Corn Bread Muffin and a choice of one side.

“Supporting our local Veterans is very important to me and our staff,” said John Erlandson, owner of the Valley’s four Famous Dave’s Restaurants and John should know as he is an Army Reserves Veteran and a graduate of U.S. Army Ranger School in 1990. John wants to show his appreciation to other veterans and thank them for their commitment and service to the country. This meal is for dine-in only and only available on Veteran’s Day.

famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que locations

The four Famous Dave’s Bar-B-Que in the Valley are in Chandler at 3250 West Frye Road; Peoria at 16148 North 83rd Avenue, SanTan Village in Gilbert at 2206 E Williams Field Rd and Mesa Riverview in Mesa at 1011 Dobson Road. For more information go to http://www.famousdavesbbq.com/