A Decade of Delicious as Arizona Restaurant Week returns in May

What started out 10 years ago with 93 restaurants has blossomed in to a twice yearly foodie event that is Arizona Restaurant Week. Mark your calendars for the week of May 19th – 28th when the 2017 Spring Arizona Restaurant Week returns with over 150 planned to participate.

Nook Kitchen’s Lamb Shank

The Arizona Restaurant Association started sponsoring the state wide event in the Fall of 2008 to help promote the states restaurant industry and increasing awareness of Arizona restaurants. Diners will have the opportunity visit new restaurants along with favorites who will offer unique 3 course prix-fixe menus for $33 or $44 per person.

Arizona Restaurant Association president and CEO Steve Chucri said, “Arizona Restaurant Week has remained a strong culinary driver to many local chefs and restaurant owners as well as a treasured memory maker for diners. It’s hard to go wrong, and we are delighted to be celebrating ten years of making folks happy.”

Match Cuisine’s Whole Roasted Sea Bream for Arizona Restaurant Week

Arizona Restaurant Week has helped local restaurants become a dining destination for foodies from around the country and the world. Since the 1st Arizona Restaurant Week it has expanded to a Spring foodie extravaganza in 2011 and a Arizona Breakfast Weekend was added a few years later. 2017 Fall Restaurant Week is planned for September 15th – 24th and Arizona Breakfast Weekend will take place from July 27th – 30th will more details to come about the 10 year anniversary celebration in September.

10 restaurants including Don and Charlie’s, Cowboy Ciao, Lon’s at The Hermosa Inn and Roaring Fork have participated in all 10 years.

With a variety of restaurants like Match Cuisine & Cocktails, Mancuso’s, Nook Kitchen, Salty Sow, White Chocolate Grill and all 4 Ajo Al’s Mexican Cafe’s to choose from foodies can expect reservations to fill up quickly so planning ahead is essential. Check http://arizonarestaurtweek.com for participating restaurants and updates of those being added to the growing list.

 

 

Super Chunk Sweets & Treats owners to open New Wave Market

With the success and national recognition of their Super Chunk Sweets & Treats store owners Sergio & Country Velador figured now would be the right time to take 1,100 square feet next door to open their mom & pop New Wave Market in May. Still under construction the new store front will offer breads and baked goods, a lunch menu, house made ice cream and locally roasted coffee.

The old town Scottsdale location will have room to sell unique & quirky retail items and space for classes where they will teach how to make baked goods and crafts. “We want to take back the tradition of making things,” said Country. “There’s a new wave of interest in craft – in the actual ‘how-to’ of creating something yourself. New Wave Market is our way of celebrating that.”

The Velador’s focus will be baked goods with savory breads, take away lunches, specialty ice cream cones and cup and an espresso bar. Unique retail items from small batch producers such as American Spoon, COOP’s Microcreamery, and Curio Spice Co. and items for around the house and gifts from Funko, Fishs Eddy & Imm Living.

“We want to show off businesses that focus on creating high quality products in small batches,” Country said. “The goal is to have a unique, food-centric selection that will appeal to kids and adults alike.”

New Wave Market will be at 7120 E. 6th Ave. #20 Scottsdale 85251 and an exact date of opening is not yet scheduled. You can follow the progress & get an opening by checking out their social media @NewWaveMarket or website https://www.newwavemarket.com/

 

 

Beer for Brains Foundation EPICURIAD returns Sat. April 29th

Food truck chefs get out of their comfort zone on Saturday April 29th for a good cause as the Beer for Brains Foundation raises money for brain cancer research and awareness with its EPICURIAD Spring 2017 Food, Craft Beers & Wine Pairings Event.

12 food truck chefs including Left Coast Burrito Co., Saffron Jak and Electric Sliders will leave their trucks for a full and modern kitchen experience at Allstate Appliances in north Scottsdale to compete against each other to create a new dish for the gourmet pairing competition.

The night begins at 6:30 p.m. with VIP attendees getting a chance to see a 2 chef face off between executive chef Jordan Murray of Rock A Belly, Food Network’s “Street Eats” Season 5 vs Chef Tim Cobb of United Lunchadores, Street Food Chef of the Year in 2015. The chefs will flip a coin to see if they will be cooking with beer or wine in addition to the ingredients provided with 35 minutes to create a dish before the main event.

At 7:30 p.m. main event begins where attendees will be able to sample gourmet food, craft beers and wine. They will have the chance to vote for “Best Pairing” to see if beer or wine is the preferred pairing and “Best Entree” based on taste and presentation. Gold, Silver & Bronze medals will be awarded to the Top 3 winning chefs who will the go head to head with restaurant chefs at the Fall 2017 EPICURIAD event.

The event is one of Beer for Brains Foundation multiple events around the country where the partner with breweries, medical facilities, and other partners to raise money and support ground breaking research at GBM Agile Tempe headquarters on the campus of Arizona State University.

Tickets can be purchased online at http://www.thebeerforbrainsfoundation.org/ for $95 per or $150 VIP with proceeds going to Brain Cancer Research with GBM Agile.

Allstate Appliances is at 15250 N. Hayden Rd in Scottsdale.

Easter weekend is hopping at The Wigwam resort

Those looking for a family friendly Easter celebration in Phoenix’s west valley have few choices when it comes to celebrating with the classic resort style brunch. Good news as the historic AAA Four-Diamond Wigwam Resort in Litchfield Park is celebrating on both Saturday and Sunday April 15th & 16th.

Easter bunny breakfast at The Wigwam

Kids get ready as the Easter Bunny will be hopping in to the resort’s Aztec Ballroom on Saturday morning for a special breakfast from 8 a.m. – 11a.m. The scrumptious menu includes French Toast, mini waffles, an omelette station along with Applewood smoked bacon, Wigwam potatoes, fresh fruit and an assortment of danishes. Breakfast with the Easter Bunny is $25 for adults and $15 for kids  3-12 years old.

After breakfast head out to the resorts lawn for the Easter Eggstravaganza for Egg Roll Races, Easter Bunny Hopping Trail, egg dyeing and animals from the nearby Wildlife World Zoo. The Easter Bunny will be available for photos and other activities are planned. The Eggstravaganza is free and open to the public and runs from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Sunday Easter Brunch

Those looking for a traditional Easter Brunch buffet should head to the Wigwam Ballroom from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Sunday where they can choose maple peppercorn glazed ham, carved pepper crusted sirloin and seared salmon. An omelette station along with pancakes and penne pasta with basil pesto and goat cheese will also be available. Reservations are required and the cost is $48 for adults, $20 for kids 3 – 12 years old and free for kids under 2 years old.

A four course brunch will be available in Litchfield’s Restaurant that will feature an appetizer course with your choice of field greens, antipasti or fresh berries. Guests can choose from Caprese Benedict, smoked salmon flatbread, shrimp & grits or Huevos Rancheros for an entrée. A dessert station with a selection of truffles, fruit tarts. macrons and other desserts will be available to end your meal. Reservations for Sunday Brunch can be made by calling (623)935-3811. For more information go to http://www.wigwamarizona.com/

 

LDV Wine Gallery offers Tuesday night Supper Club

Tuesday is often considered one of the slowest, least productive days of the week, 2 days from the previous weekend and 3 days til the next still climbing the hump to get over the hump that is Wednesday. LDV Wine Gallery is helping to break up the monotony with its monthly Supper Club, the first Tuesday of the month.

Photos courtesy of LDV Wine Gallery

Hosted by LDV owner Peggy Fiadaca and owner & winemaker Kurt Dunham the wine inspired menu will transport you to the vineyards via your palate and imagination.

Unless it falls on a holiday the dinners are scheduled for May 2, June 6, July 11, August 1, September 12, October 3, November 7 and December 5. With previous dinners having sold out and seating for 20 people reservations are required for these 3 course dinners paired with 3 LDV wines.

The casual atmosphere will allow guests to learn the recipes for the dinner, get a chance to socialize with other guests and understand the vineyard to table journey.

Below is a sample menu from a previous dinner and will change on a monthly basis as seasonal ingredients become available.

Starters

Beef Barley Soup with Crusty Noble Bread

2013 Syrah

 

Thai Spicy Noodles with Shrimp

2013 Sky Island Viognier

 

Entrées

Mesquite Grilled Rack of Lamb Provence with Rosemary Potatoes and

Mixed Squash Matchsticks

2012 Petite Sirah

 

Mesquite Grilled Marinated Beef Tri Tip with Southwestern Corn Relish and Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Bacon and Balsamic Vinegar Glaze

2013 Sky Island Petite Sirah

 

Desserts

Flourless Chocolate Torte with Raspberries

2012 “The Signature” Petite Sirah

 

Decadent Espresso Cheesecake

2013 Grenache

 

To make a reservation for the Supper Club you can call 602-320-1485 or 480-664-4822 or email info@LDVWinery.com

LDV Wine Gallery is at 6951 E. 1st St. Scottsdale 85251 http://www.ldvwinegallery.com/

 

Foodie “Nirvana” coming to Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa

When we hear the word “Nirvana” we automatically think of the “grunge rock” band of the 1990’s. Definitions of the word slightly vary but many consider it the “ultimate state of happiness” which is what the culinary and marketing team at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa are hoping for as they were brainstorming for a name of their new culinary festival.

Chef Todd English. All photos Courtesy of Eric Mower & Associates

An exciting 4 days is planned from April 27th- 30th as festival goers will be able to mix & mingle with celebrity chefs Todd English, Robert Irvine and Sanctuary’s own Beau MacMillan as they team up with other visiting chefs and Phoenix area chefs, wine makers and mixologists for themed dinners, tastings and a golf tournament.

With our beautiful weather and sunsets you may want to turn the festival into a vacation and stay at Sanctuary in one of their suites, casitas or a private home. A 2 night minimum is required and rooms start $479 per night plus tax & resort fee.

Sanctuary on Camelback infinity pool courtesy of Eric Mower & Associates

Tickets for the festival can be purchased at http://www.nirvanafoodandwine.com/ with the schedule of events below. Part of the proceeds from the festival will benefit HopeKids, an organization that provides events and support for families with a child who has cancer or other life threatening diseases.

Torch

Hosted by celebrity chef and television personality Robert Irvine and local celebrity mixologist Jason Asher, owner of Counter Intuitive and Undertow

Thursday, April 27, 7-10 p.m.; Infinity Pool and Lawn; $125 per person

Torch will kick-off the festival with a poolside Polynesian fantasy. Mixologists will compete at eight stations, as guests rub shoulders with an esteemed panel of judges to select winners of the Judge’s Choice and People’s Choice awards.

Birds and Bubbles

Hosted by chef, restaurateur, author and television personality Todd English

Friday, April 28, 7-10 p.m.; The Views Ballroom, Lawn; $135 per person, $225 VIP

Fried chicken and Champagne come together in an inspired pairing as guest chefs put their own spin on the southern specialty, complete with side dishes and bubbly. The all-star local line-up includes Stephen Jones (The Larder + The Delta and Homeboy’s Hotsauce), Cullen Campbell (Crudo and Okra), Justin Beckett (Southern Rail), Jeremy Pacheco (LON’s at The Hermosa Inn), Gio Osso (Virtù at The Bespoke Inn) and Beau MacMillan. They will be joined by visiting chefs from Palm Beach, Fla.: Clay Conley (Buccan and Grato) and Lindsay Autry (The Regional Kitchen & Public House). Festival-goers who book VIP admission enjoy personal time for 45 minutes with their favorite chefs.

American country singer/songwriter D. Vincent Williams & the Nashville Allstars, whose “Just Got Started Lovin’ You,” sung by Otto James, topped the country charts in 2008, will provide live entertainment throughout the evening. His songs have also been recorded by major artists like Randy Travis, Reba McEntire, Ricky Skaggs, and Rascal Flatts (“I’m Movin’ On”).

Master of Taste honoring Chuck Wagner

Friday, April 28, 7-10 p.m.; Casa Seven; $350 per person; limited availability

Chuck Wagner, owner and winemaker of Caymus Vineyards, and scion of the legendary Napa Valley vintner family, will be the guest of honor at an intimate dinner at one of Sanctuary’s elegant private estate homes.  The evening will showcase the exceptional vintages of the Wagner Family of Wine and three generations of winemaking talent. Preparing the feast will be local chefs Christopher Gross (Christopher’s and Crush), Matt Carter (Fat Ox and The Mission), Mark Tarbell (Tarbell’s and Tarbell’s Tavern), and Beau MacMillan.

Golf Tournament

Saturday, April 29, 10:30 a.m. registration and 12 noon tee; Mountain Shadows; $400 per player

Each foursome will be paired with a renowned chef, star mixologist or notable sports figure at this fun-filled celebrity golf tournament being played at the long-awaited Mountain Shadows course at the base of Camelback Mountain. Plenty of food, beer and spirits will round out an unforgettable day on the links.

Best of the West

Hosted by chef/restauranteur (Mora Italian) and Chopped judge Scott Conant

Saturday, April 29, 7-10 p.m.; Praying Monk and elements restaurant; $145 per person, $225 VIP

Sanctuary’s signature restaurant, elements, and its indoor/outdoor Praying Monk venue will be the setting for Nirvana’s final evening event. More than a dozen elegant restaurant stations will be manned by celebrated chefs from throughout the West, including James Porter (Terra Farm + Manor), Samantha Sanz (Talavera at Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale Troon North), Sean Currid (Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails) and Beau MacMillan. VIP attendees gain early access and extra time with the chefs.

New Orleans Jazz & Bourbon Brunch

Sunday, April 30, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; elements; $85 per person

Nirvana will come to a rousing finale with a N’Awlins-style jazz brunch complete with live music and a Bourbon twist, serving up everything from étouffée to feather-light beignets at this fun sit-down event.

 

 

Hopdoddy Burger Bar to roll out new seasonal menu items this week.

You already know that Hopdoddy Burger Bar serves good burgers but did you know they also serve handcrafted milkshakes and cocktails at their full service bar. All 3 of these components are part of Hopdoddy’s success and on April 5 they will be introducing a seasonal burger, milkshake and cocktail.

For a limited time guests will be able to order the Double Stack Burger and Purple Rain Shake until April 18th and High + Rye Cocktail until May 2nd.

The Double Stack Burger ($10) will be made with two freshly ground Angus beef and onion patties topped with melted Swiss and cheddar, sassy sauce and tangy chipotle ketchup, proving two patties are better than one.

The Purple Rain Shake ($6) features house made blueberry compote swirled to perfection with toasted hazelnuts, vanilla spiced ice cream and a touch of sea salt, this naturally purple shake pays homage to the beloved rock star, Prince, in both color and name.

The High + Rye is made with local rye bourbon, house made ginger syrup, honey water, fresh squeezed lime juice, and topped with a piece of sweet and spicy candied ginger.

To taste these seasonal menu items or any of the other burgers, shakes and more hurry down to the 2 Phoenix area Hopdoddy’s in Scottsdale on Scottsdale Rd. north of Shea Blvd. and at 20th St. & Camelback Rd. in Phoenix. There are also plenty of Hopdoddy Burger Bar’s in Texas and southern California. http://www.hopdoddy.com/