2018 AZ Central Wine & Food experience welcomes Marcus Samuelsson and Aaron Sanchez

Over 60 Arizona restaurants and their chefs return November 3rd & 4th for the 4th annual AZ Central Wine & Food Experience. The 2018 experience moves up the road to Monterra at Westworld and includes celebrity chefs Marcus Samuelsson and Aaron Sanchez.

Marcus Samuelsson
All photos courtesy of FleurCom Group

The Martha Stewart Experience returns

AZWFE welcomes back The Martha Stewart Experience with a Celebrating with Martha theme for guests to get creative just in time for the holidays. You’ll be able to check out Martha’s newest line of kitchen gear and utensils from Macy’s and QVC.

New to this years event is the The Grateful House where guests can make their own salsa and wine charms. Their will be Master Demo lead by a Grateful Influencer to 40 people on a first come first serve basis.

Join Marcus Samuelsson and Aaron Sanchez

On Saturday award-winning chef Marcus Samuelesson will join the festivities along with local chefs. Sunday welcomes chef and Food Network judge Aaron Sanchez who will mix and mingle with guest and more local chefs.

Chefs from across the valley including Juan Zamora of Chula Seafood, Jennifer Russo of The Market by Jennifer Restaurant and Bar and MATCH Restaurant and Lounge chef Alex Stratta will prepare tastes of food.

Get your tickets

Tickets for the two day event are available at their website.

  • Grand Tasting.  $65 limited time offer in advance. Sample delicious bites from Arizona’s most coveted dining establishments. Meet chefs, taste their creations; see cooking demonstrations.  Plus enjoy fine wine, craft beer and distinctive spirits sampling. GT entry at 1pm Sat. and Sun.
  • VIP Grand Tasting. $120 in advance.  For guests who seek all the benefits of the Grand Tasting, they’ll also enjoy private tastings from wineries and distillers, early entry, a VIP Lounge and VIP restrooms. VIP Entry at noon.
  • Chef’s Package Experience with Marcus Samulesson & Aarón Sánchez.  $180 in advance. Enjoy all the benefits of the VIP Grand Tasting, PLUS private meet and greet and book-signing with Marcus Samuelsson Nov. 3 & Aarón Sánchez Nov. 4 [Advance purchase recommended. Tickets subject to sellout.] Chef’s Package begins at 11:30am. Subscribers are eligible for $15 off tickets, available only through azcentral.com/insider.

 

Hearth ’61 promotes Richard Garcia to executive sous chef

Hearth ’61 executive sous chef Richard Garcia

Correction: Richard was promoted to Executive Sous Chef of the resort, not Hearth ’61.

In less than a year at Mountain Shadows Resort, Banquet Chef Richard Garcia has been promoted to Executive Sous Chef at the Paradise Valley resort’s signature restaurant Hearth ’61. Garcia will be working under the guidance of Executive Chef Charles Wiley. This isn’t the first time the duo have worked together as they helped re-open Hotel Valley Ho in 2005.

New Mexico born Garcia spent time in Santa Fe where he found his love for food and cooking from local chefs. In 1998 he worked at Mark Miller’s Coyote Cafe learning how to cook southwestern cuisine before attending Scottsdale Culinary Institute. After earning an Associate Degree in Culinary Arts he returned to Santa Fe to work at the El Dorado Hotel.

Garcia returned to Scottsdale’s Avalon in his first sous chef position before heading to Trader Vic’s as sous chef. He joined Hotel Valley Ho’s Zuzu as their first chef de cuisine before being promoted to executive sous chef.

He was re-united with Wiley in late 2017 when he accepted a position at Mountain Shadows as banquet chef.

Wiley is thrilled to have him at Hearth ’61 as he brings his innovative cooking style using simple ingredients to the menu.

executive sous chef
Hearth ’61 Ahi Tartare. All photos courtesy of J Public Relations

 

Giordano’s gets ready to open new Phoenix location with a pizza party

The next wave of Chicago deep dish pizza restaurants is starting as Giordano’s opens their new Phoenix location on Wednesday September 5th. Celebrate the popular Chicago based restaurants new location as it’s also celebrates National Cheese Pizza Day .

The party starts at 4 p.m. in northeast Phoenix where this will be Giordano’s 2nd Arizona location since the 2016 opening in Peoria. Guests will be to taste delicious samples of Giordano’s pizza and other dishes and family friendly activities. Experience the “cheese pull”  and tag your picture #Giordanos for a chance to win a $25 gift card as part of their weekly #PhotoFriday contest.

Giordano's

“Phoenix is full of Chicago transplants, and they know their deep-dish pizza,” said Christine Friszell, general manager of the new Giordano’s in Paradise Valley. “We love watching them rediscover Giordano’s in Arizona, and introduce our Chicago-style, stuffed deep-dish pizza to their friends and families. It’s an experience we look forward to sharing with the northeast Valley.”

The 6,400 square foot dining room and covered patio will be open 7 days  for lunch and dinner opening daily at 11 a.m. Delivery, take out and catering are also available.

The new location is at 12811 N. Tatum Blvd. Phoenix 85032. For more information check out https://giordanos.com/

Enjoy Arizona only beers, wines and spirits at 1st annual AZ Barrels, Bottles & Brews festival

Arizona is on the worldwide map with its craft beers, wines and spirits with the trophies and awards given over the last few years. To showcase all things Arizona there will be the first ever AZ Barrels, Bottles & Brews festival at Salt River Fields on November 3rd.

Arizona
Photo courtesy of Salt River Fields

The beers, wines and spirits will be made exclusively for the festival and use Arizona yeast, hops, grapes and water.

With a great view of the McDowell Mountains from the concourse of Salt River Fields festival goers will be able to sample from 2-5 p.m.

Over 30 brewers, wineries and distillers are scheduled to participate and the list keeps growing. SanTan Brewing Co., Helton Brewing, Elgin Distillery, Cellar 433 and McFate Brewing are a few of those announced.

Tickets are limited and are $50 for 12 drink samples and access to food trucks to purchase food. V.I.P tickets are available at $65 and allow entry an hour early at 1 p.m. Designated drivers pay only $19 and get a free swag bag. For more information and to purchase tickets visit the festival website.

Salt River Fields at Talking Stick is at 7555 N. Pima Rd. Scottsdale, AZ

Downtown Chandler to host Rockin’ Taco Street Fest

Food festival season is starting to get ramped up as the summer slowly comes to an end. On of the first festivals is the 7th annual Rockin’ Taco Street Fest on Saturday September 15th in downtown Chandler.

This years festival hosts 20 restaurants and food vendors making more tacos than one can eat. Restaurants such as Las Palmas, Taco Guild and Nando’s Mexican Cafe are just a few restaurants breaking out the recipe book to create unique tacos. Specialty Poke tacos, cactus and Korean chicken tacos are a few of the non-traditional tacos being served up at the family friendly event.

Downtown Chandler
Evil Waze. All photos ciourtesy of Jen Pruett of HDE Agency

More than just tacos

You can’t eat tacos for all 9 hours of the festival so entertainment from Santana cover band Evil Waze will take the stage. Metalachi, the world’s first and only mariachi heavy metal band will headline the festival.

A custom low-rider car show with In the Streets magazine will show off over 60 cars, bikes and trucks. Lucha libre wrestling and food eating contest will be going on throughout the day.

Get your tickets here

General admission tickets on-line are $10, $15 at the door with kids 12 and under free. The 21 years old + VIP tickets are $100 and available on-line only. VIP ticket holders get a private area, 6 alcoholic beverage tickets, catered food and shaded area. 

The Tequila Tavern tickets are $30 on-line get you 10 tequila samples and unlimited chips and salsa.

A portion of the proceeds from the festival will be donated to the Downtown Chandler Community Partnership. The non-profit DCCP mission is to use leadership and resources to promote the downtown Chandler area.

Tickets are available at http://www.rockintacoaz.com/ 

The festival is from 12-9 p.m. and is at Dr. AJ Chandler Park in downtown Chandler.

The Downtown Donut Festival is happening and its about time

It was only a matter of time before one of America’s favorite treats, the donut, got its own festival.  The first Downtown Donut Festival is from the folks that bring us the Phoenix Pizza Festival the day before making for a great foodie weekend. The donut festival will be on Sunday November 18th at Margaret T. Hance Park in downtown Phoenix from 11 a.m. -3 p.m.

Downtown Donut Festival

Donuts and more

Over 15 donut makers from around Phoenix will be frying up the dough and to a crowd expected to reach 2,000 people. Donuts will be sold for $1 per along with donut holes, donut samples and other donut creations in a multitude of flavors.

Enjoy the donuts then have fun at a Mimosa Bar, craft beer garden, wine tasting, lawn games and live music. The festival is for the whole family and their will be a craft zone for the kids.

There will also be a vendor marketplace for festival goers can get a head start on the holiday shopping season.

Downtown Donut Festival tickets

Tickets for the festival are available on-line at  https://www.downtowndonutfest.com/ for $8. Part of the proceeds will be donated to Downtown Phoenix Inc. which promotes downtown Phoenix by supporting local business’s and events.

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/

Ocean Prime heats up your love life with a Summer Date Night

Has your love life cooled off as our summer temperatures have heated up, if so head to Ocean Prime for a Summer Date Night with your special someone. Every Thursday until September 20th couples can enjoy a 3-course all-inclusive dinner to share and heat things up in your love life.

All photos courtesy of Ocean Prime

The menu is as follows….

Shared Appetizer — Choice of:

  • Caesar Salad with Crisp Romaine, Parmesan Garlic Dressing and Brioche Croutons
  • Sonoma Goat Cheese Ravioli with Golden Oak Mushrooms

Shared Entrée —

  • Chateaubriand 16-ounce sliced Filet with Asparagus, Roasted Potatoes and Bordelaise Sauce. Additional enhancements offered include Shrimp Scampi ($15); Sea Scallops $16 for 2); and Lobster Tail ($26)

Share Dessert — Choice of:

  • New York Style Cheesecake with Graham Cracker Crust
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie with Peanut Butter Mousse and Bittersweet Chocolate Ganache

The dinner is $95 and reservations can be made by calling 480-347-1313 or going to their website.

Ocean Prime is at 5455 E. High Street Phoenix 85054.

Press Coffee to open cafe at Scottsdale Waterfront in August

Press Coffee announced last week they’re opening the 9th location of the popular coffee shop/cafe at the Scottsdale Waterfront in late August. It will be the roasters’ 2nd Scottsdale location since opening in the Scottsdale Quarter. 

“Old Town Scottsdale is a great neighborhood for locals and Arizona visitors alike and we’re looking forward to being a part of the community,” said Press Coffee co-owner Jason Kyle.

Coffee and more

When Press opens their Scottsdale Waterfront location customers will be able to order from a new breakfast and lunch menu made on site and pastries from Phoenix Public Market.

Egg sandwich. All photos courtesy of Press Coffee

Espresso, pour overs and cold brews will be available using Press’s award-winning coffee roasts.

Donating to Phoenix Children’s Hospital

Once opened Press the Scottsdale Waterfront store will offer its daily drip coffee for $1 the weekend August of 24-26th with all proceeds donated to Phoenix Children’s Hospital. “We’re glad we can start things off by supporting the amazing efforts of Phoenix Children’s Hospital at the opening.” says Kyle.

Flagship roastery in north Phoenix

The Scottsdale Waterfront announcement comes two months after Press announced it was opening a flagship roastery in Spring 2019 near 32nd St. & Shea Blvd. in north Phoenix.

Once opened it will handle all of Press’s roasting along with a cafe and plenty of meeting space. Co-owner Steve Kraus say’s “We are excited about the future of this iconic building. We wanted to go beyond just a production facility and create a space that allows us to share our love for coffee with the community.”

The new facility will double Press’s production and once opened the current facility will exclusively produce their cold brews.

The Scottsdale Waterfront location will be open 6:30 a.m. – 7 p.m Mon. – Thurs. 6:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. Friday. Saturdays from 7 a.m. – 8 p.m. and Sunday from 7 a.m. – 6 p.m.

It’s at 7135 E. Camelback Rd. Scottsdale 85251 For more information check their website.

 

 

Former Z’Tejas chef opens Cocina Madrigal in south Phoenix

After years of honing his culinary skills in restaurants in Mexico City and the United States for somebody else, Leo Madrigal decided to take those skills and open his own restaurant. The Oaxacan born Madrigal did just that recently with the opening of his Cocina Madrigal on the corner of 16th St. & Wood in south Phoenix.

All photos courtesy of Kassidy McDonald at Evolve Marketing

The 1,900 sq. ft. restaurant seats up to 140 people once the patio opens including the bar that’s serving signature margaritas and a unique section of tequila. “From the moment our guests walk into the restaurant, I want them to feel welcomed, appreciated and at home. I’m so excited to share my commitment to service and high quality food at our new location in South Phoenix,” says Madrigal.

Cocina Madrigal signature dishes

Madrigal wanted to always share his vision of Mexican cuisine at his own restaurant after working in restaurants such as Z’Tejas, Eddie V’s and Taco Guild after arriving from Houston. The menu is inspired by growing up in Oaxaca and he giving it an American twist with such dishes as Oaxacan Con Queso with American & Oaxacan cheese, Mango Steak Salad, Tres Mushrooms Enchiladas and Grilled Elote with Cotija cheese.

Mexican food staples tacos, enchiladas and burros are given Madrigals twist as well.

Cocina Madrigal is open for lunch and dinner Sun.- Thurs. from 11 a.m. -10 p.m., Fri. & Sat. from 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. with Happy Hour Mon. – Fri. from 2:30 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Cocina Madrigal is at 4044 S. 16th St. Phoenix 85040. (602)243-9000 For more information check their Facebook page.