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3rd Annual Arizona Breakfast Weekend is set for July 27th-30th

They say to eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper so it’s time to dust off your crown as Arizona Breakfast Weekend returns July 27th -30th. Whether you prefer egg and bacon or pancakes and sausage you can’t go wrong with the special menus participating restaurants will be creating.

breakfast weekend
Ticoz Carne Asada scramble

Sponsored by Hickman’s Family Farms and the idea of the Arizona Restaurant Association this opportunity is great for breakfast eaters to sample new restaurants and those who forgo the meal to realize why breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

“For two years now, Arizona Breakfast Weekend has been wowing diners around the state,” said ARA president and CEO, Steve Chucri. “We look forward to its continued success, and growth, for years to come.”

Hash kitchen’s Herb fried Chicken & Waffle

Arizona Breakfast Weekend restaurants

Hash Kitchen – Scottsdale and Arcadia, The Original Breakfast House, Paul Martin’s, Ticoz, Perk Eatery and The Market by Jennifer’s are confirmed to plan special menus for the 3 day event.

Over 50 restaurants are expected to participate surpassing last years almost 50 restaurants, diners and hotels who served hungry morning customers. A full list of restaurants and menus will be available in late June/early July and can be found at http://www.arizonabreakfastweekend.com/

Perk Eatery Breakfast Tacos

Breakfast menus

Signature dishes will be created by each restaurant and the price points for each meal will be $7. $10 or $15 and will be at the discretion of each restaurant to correspond to what they’re serving.

Restaurants may opt to serve “breakfast for dinner” on July 28th & 29th and yo can check the website if that’s the case.

“We like to think that Arizona Breakfast Weekend presents restaurants with new opportunities — whether to offer diners a totally new menu or to tweak and expand their existing breakfast and brunch menus,” Chucri added. “Arizona Breakfast Weekend brings the same level of culinary excellence, creativity and diversity as diners have come to expect from Arizona Restaurant Week — but with the added benefit of starting off your day with us.”

 

 

Zuzu introduces new dinner menu from Chef Russell Lacasce

When I wrote about new executive chef Russell Lacasce taking over the kitchen at the Hotel Valley Ho’s flagship restaurant Zuzu back in Dec. I wondered what direction he would take the restaurant. I now know as Lacasce has introduced his first dinner menu since arriving at the Zuzu in January. A few restaurant bloggers and myself had the opportunity to taste several of the new menu items and speak to Lacasce and other members of his culinary team.

Zuzu Lobster Rolls

“I wanted the new menu to be very approachable, while offering dishes with complex combinations of flavors and textures that diners might not expect,” said LaCasce. “Everything is fresh and seasonal, with a strong focus on showcasing our amazing local farmers and purveyors.” Several of the Zuzu’s previous American comfort food staples are still available in the lounge.

Chef Russell Lacasce new menu items

The new menu includes dishes that perfect for sharing and include….

Hawaiian Ahi Tuna Tartare with spicy chicharones, Avocado mousse, Heirloom tomatoes, with a local Feta and shallot buttermilk dressing. This small plate tasted fresh with a hint of spice and a nice touch from the crispy chicharone.

Chef Russell Lacasce Hawaiian Ahi Tartare

The Burrata has a creamy and smooth texture and the addition of pickled strawberries & toasted pistachios give it flavors you’d be hard pressed to find on other plates of Burrata around town.

The Hokkaido Scallops comes three to a serving separated by one of the more unique ingredients I’ve found recently, fried Meyer lemon wedges. Both are served over a bed of toasted cous cous & pine nuts and drizzled with a shellfish butter. The scallops practically melt in your mouth and citrus flavor and crunch from the Panko crusted fried lemon may have made me a scallop convert. This dish is not to be missed by scallop enthusiasts.

The entrée we tasted was the item on the whole menu that raised my eye brow when I read it…..Baker’s Bacon Chop. A 20 lb. back bacon loin that is house carved, cured, smoked and honey lacquered prior to being plated. Served with green harissa, burnt orange, fresh herbs, pickled chiles and pork rinds. All I can say is WOW! A loin of crispy back bacon will give a whole new meaning to bacon. It’s also great for those who prefer gluten-free dinners.

What’s next at Zuzu

At the same time the dinner menu debuted in early May, Lacasce introduced a lounge menu and new dessert menu from pastry chef Audrey Enriquez. In coming weeks he will be rolling out new breakfast, lunch and brunch menus for diners to sink their teeth into. If his first menu is any indication of what’s to come in June we should be pick a day now, circle on the calendar and plan to check out Zuzu.

Zuzu is in the Hotel Valley Ho at 6850 E. Main St. Scottsdale 85251 (480)376-2600 http://www.hotelvalleyho.com/ZuZu