Tag Archives: cocktails

Downtown Deli Tavern breathes new life into a classic corner deli

Phoenix restaurant group Genuine Concepts wanted in on the growing restaurant and bar scene happening in downtown Phoenix and have announced a Monday December 18th opening of their 12 restaurant, Downtown Deli Tavern.

Downtown Phoenix old timers may have eaten at the original Downtown Deli before it closed a couple of years ago after 46 years of serving patrons breakfast & lunch. Genuine Concepts owners Tucker Woodbury and Jim Riley purchased the property and have given it a new vibe while keeping true to its roots.

Unlike the original deli the tavern will serve lunch, dinner and cocktails until late in the evening and early morning with its corner bar atmosphere.

“It seemed to me that there has been a little bit of a land rush in downtown Phoenix and now that other companies and businesses are coming, we wanted to make sure that we put our stake in the ground and held onto a spot,” Woodbury states.

Eating at Downtown Deli Tavern

Executive Chef Justin Woodard’s menu is comfort food inspired with dishes such as Mom’s Meatloaf, Omelet and Hash, Turkey Noodle Soup, Egg Salad Sandwich and signature Fried PB&J and Smothered Browns will create a buzz.

The full menu is available all day as will be the $.50 cup of coffee along with grab n go items and weekly list of 7 for $7 food items.

“The food we have created for The Downtown Deli Tavern should resonate with its over the top comfort food that we can all identify with,” says Woodard. “Food to me is all about the memories and this place has a menu that will leave a lasting impression on its guests. Food should be fun, not too fussy and simple. I think we’ve done a great job of creating a menu that reflects that.

Classic Cocktails

Beverage director Chris Hardin is keeping it simple with basic and classic cocktails with his modern twist including White Russian, Salty Dog, Deli Old Fashioned and the Strong Island Iced Tea.

Proud of its Arizona roots all draft beers at Downtown Deli Tavern all Arizona brewed.

“The Downtown Deli Tavern will be equal parts food and bar and we hope that people recognize that end even though its a little bit quirky, we love old buildings and we love old Phoenix and this project has been around for so long, why change things too much. We are going to let people figure it out for themselves when they visit,” says Woodbury. “It’s very classic rock. It has an approachable space, with friendly people and affordable pricing.”

Downtown Deli Tavern is at 130 North Central Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85004 and will be open Monday-Wednesday 10:30am-11pm, Thursday 10:30am-12am, Friday 10:30am-2am, Saturday 3:00pm-2:00am & will be closed on Sunday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

J’s Kaiyo Sushi and Bar brings together a culinary dream team

Housed in a former Arby’s restaurant just east of downtown Scottsdale J’s Kaiyo Sushi and Bar opened without fanfare as most restaurants do nowadays especially when you consider who’s creating the menu and making sure it’s executed the way it should be.

J’s Kaiyo owner Peji Malihi brought in chef Jason McGrath and sushi chef Todd Register to serve not only sushi but sharable dishes with a Mediterranean and Eastern influenced dishes.  Think Moroccan spiced lamb and crab stuffed and fire charred avocado rolled in exotic Asian spices and seeds.

J's Kaiyo
chef Jason McGrath. Photos courtesy of Chanelle Sinclair

J’s Kaiyo Sushi

All three are committed to the freshest ingredients including seafood for the sushi bar. So much so that the sushi bar is closed on Sunday’s because they can’t get their daily delivery of fresh seafood. Chef Register knows his sushi too as he comes to J’s Kaiyo from Roka Akor and RA Sushi and plans to use all fresh fish daily to maximize freshness and flavor.

“The focus is always on keeping the dishes fresh, clean, and simple,” McGrath says. “The only thing you’ll find in our freezers is our mochi ice cream.” As Malihi likes to say, “the roll speaks for itself,” there is no need for heavy sauces, creams, or batters to give their sushi mouthwatering flavor. “It’s all about sharing creative, quality food with the community,” McGrath says.

Family friendly and Izakaya

J’s Kaiyo is a family friendly restaurant named after Malihi’s son and McGraths nephew Jayden that includes a kid’s menu. McGrath practically grew up in the kitchen as his father Robert is an award-winning chef known for his work at The Roaring Fork and other local establishments and food festivals.

Adults will love the Japanese sake menu at J’s Kaiyo along with a full complement of craft cocktails, wines and beers. Communal drinking and sharing of sake known as “Izakaya” in Japan is encouraged as sake has a unique flavor profiles.

J’s Kaiyo Sushi and Bar is open Monday Friday for lunch & dinner starting at 11:30 a.m. and Saturday’s for dinner.

The restaurant is at 4412 N. Miller Rd.Scottsdale 85251 480-427-2526. For more info visit their website.

 

Meet me at the Coach House and where else to go on Thanksgiving Eve

Those last two posts on Thanksgiving Day restaurants that are serving dinner or preparing take-out meals nearly wiped me out with all the information, I can now set my sights on Thanksgiving Eve.

If you’re  out and about showing out-of-towners a good time or you grew up here and return home to catch up with friends at the local watering hole, the night before Thanksgiving can be just as big a deal as the turkey and football the next day.

If you mention Thanksgiving Eve to most in these parts two places come to mind…..El Chorro Lodge in Paradise Valley and Coach House Tavern in downtown Scottsdale. Join me at the Coach House just after sunset before the line forms and I’m sure many will make an appearance at both establishments.

It won’t be your typical Wednesday at Sorso Wine Room and The Park as they start the Thanksgiving celebration a day early.

Thanksgiving Eve at Sorso Wine Room

If you live in the northeast valley and prefer to stay closer to home  Sorso Wine Room at The Scottsdale Quarter will start the celebrating with an all day Happy Hour with 2 for 1 house wines by the glass and draft beers.

Food special will be available including the Brussels Board ($8), The Dip($8) and select Bruschetta at 3 for $10.

Sorso Wine Room is at 15323 N Scottsdale Rd #150, Scottsdale http://sorsowineroom.com/ Thanksgiving Eve

The Park in downtown Phoenix

If you’re going to be in central or downtown Phoenix, The Park will be hosting a Thanksgiving Eve Bash with MillerCoors. The Bash starts at 8 p.m. but $5 pumpkin spice specialty cocktails and ales will be available all day.

Guest are encouraged to bring a can(s) of food for the Can 4 Can Hurricane Relief Food Drive. Those that bring a can will receive a penny can of a MillerCoors product.

The Park is at 3 S. 2nd St., Phoenix http://thepark.bar/

The Park

I hope to see you out and about  and where ever you go be smart, safe and have a  Happy Thanksgiving!

Nico Heirloom Kitchen debuts new cocktail menu

Gilbert’s Nico Heirloom Kitchen is debuting a new cocktail menu with 8 new cocktails. Several use barrel ages spirits including gin and rum.

Smoke n Barrel

Here are the new cocktails and their ingredients.

Rose Guerra – Raspberry vodka, fresh raspberries, peach puree, fresh lemon juice, French rose

Smoke n Barrel – Barrel-aged Appleton estate rum, Cynar 70, banana liqueur, Green Chartreuse, espresso, vanilla tobacco syrup, cream

Nonna’s Cider – Glen Grant Scotch, Apple pie liqueur, Ginger liqueur, Frangelico, fresh lemon juice, Fever tree Ginger Ale

Plymouth’s Peak – Barrel Aged Plymouth’s Gin, fresh lemon juice, Lavender syrup, Creme de Violette, Cassis Sherry blend, Cherry bitters

Carda Bonds – Rittenhouse BIB, fresh lemon juice, Meletti 1870, Amaro Nonino, Cardamon bitters, Absinthe, lemon essence

Del Strappo – Exotico Reposado Tequila, Yellow Chartreuse, Cinnamon Agave, fresh pineapple juice, fresh lime juice, Serrano bitters, vanilla extract

Bella Nueva (Ice Queen’s at Virtu spin-off) – Peppercorn infused Tito’s vodka, Strawberry shrub, Luxardo Maraschino, Orgeat, fresh lemon juice, Rhubarb bitters, Champagne foam

Pink Sangria – French Rose, Vodka, Peach liqueur, Strawberry puree, Soda water.

Nico Heirloom Kitchen is at 366 N Gilbert Rd Gilbert, AZ 85234 http://www.nicoaz.com/

 

Famous 48 opens in November in downtown Scottsdale

Update: With a month under their belt Famous 48 will start serving brunch on Sat. & Sun’s possibly starting this weekend Dec. 2 & 3rd.

Square One Concepts wasted no time in filling the space left vacant by Crab & Mermaid earlier this year. Realizing people in old town Scottsdale prefer tavern style regional American fare the restaurant group will be opening Famous 48 on Monday November 6th.

Famous 48
Half roasted chicken and other photos courtesy of J. Martin Harris Photography.

Once opened Famous 48 will have an ambience that balances both casual and fine dining and will celebrate the regional cuisine of the lower 48 states of the United States including BBQ, seafood, pizza and other American classic comfort foods. The tavern themed menu will serve food cooked with fresh and high quality ingredients using an artisanal approach to cooking.

Signature cocktails, craft beers from Arizona and wines will compliment the regional cuisine.

Famous 48 hours

The restaurant will serve lunch, dinner and brunch on the weekends in the leather booth line dining room and on the patio. Happy Hour starts early at 3p.m. til 6p.m. Mon.-Fri. and will include tasty bites to eat, premium cocktails and house wines.

Famous 48
Miso salmon

The open air patio will include fire pits and couches that will offer diners a more intimate experience.

Hours for Famous 48 will be Mon.- Fri. 11 a.m. -close, Sat. & Sun. 8a.m.- close. and weekend brunch 8a.m.- 2 p.m.

Famous 48 is at 4218 N. Scottsdale Rd. 85251 480-758-4994. To see the full menu got their website. Famous 48 is owned by Square One Concepts.

 

Scottsdale League for the Arts to host The Brunch Club December 2nd

Who doesn’t like sipping on champagne while eating French toast, the smell of bacon while lounging at one of the newest resorts in the valley.  Not me, that’s why I’ll be joining The Scottsdale League for the Arts for their newest fundraiser, The Brunch Club on Saturday December 2nd at Mountain Shadows Resort in Paradise Valley.

SCottsdale League for the Arts
Photos courtesy of Jen Pruett and Landon Evans

The Brunch Club will gather starting at 11:30 a.m. and members will spend the next three hours sipping on rose, Mimosas and Bloody Mary’s as local restaurants will serve up tasty bites to eat including savory quiche to sweet French toast.

In between sips and bites stroll the grounds of Mountain Shadows manicured grounds with Camelback Mountain serving as you backdrop.

The Brunch Club tickets

To become a member of The Brunch Club you must be over 21 years of age and can purchase you tickets online with General Admission ticket priced at $40 until 10/31. From 11/1-12/1  tickets will be $45 and $50 at the door while supplies last.

Want to get an early start while others are still waking up, early admission at 10:30 a.m. tickets are available for $65 until 10/31. From 11/1-12/1 for $70 and at the door for $75.

Scottsdale League for the Arts

All net proceeds raised will go to the non-profit Scottsdale League for the Arts which raises money to promote the arts and arts education organizations in the Phoenix area.

Money is raised through out the year by hosting fundraisers such as The Scottsdale Culinary Festival and The Friends of James Beard Dinner. They have donated over $4 million dollars since 2002 to organizations such as Childsplay, Ballet Arizona and Free arts of Arizona.

Mountain Shadows Resort is at 5445 E. Lincoln Dr. Paradise Valley 85253.

Farm & Craft to open along 7th Street restaurant row in Phoenix

Scottsdale’s Farm & Craft is set to open its 2nd location in the spot recently vacated by The Herb Box at The Colony along the popular 7th St. corridor in north central Phoenix. Riot Hospitality Group, owner of Farm & Craft and other local restaurants and bars plans to open the new location in early 2018 after the renovations are complete.

Photos Captured by Peter Speyer | Speyer Photography

Farm & Craft offers guests a healthy and sustainable food and drink menu all in a fast casual atmosphere during breakfast and lunch and a full service restaurant experience during dinner.  The menu will be similar to that of  the Scottsdale location and guests will notice a different design to the Phoenix location as the neighborhood it serves is different and the owners like to adapt to those differences.

“We are very excited to open another Farm & Craft in the Valley,” says Ryan Hibbert, CEO of Riot Hospitality Group. “We saw an opportunity to bring this unique concept to The Colony and we plan to continue to grow the brand.”

Farm & Craft
Photos Captured by Peter Speyer | Speyer Photography

The Wellness Menu offered at Farm & Craft focuses on optimal health through four specific philosophies, “anti-inflammatory diet”, “increasing pro-biotic levels”, “maintaining a high level of anti-oxidants” and “reducing overall stress”. This is done by working with local suppliers to create a menu that uses ingredients that are local, gluten-free, hormone free, organic and sustainable.

Photos Captured by Peter Speyer | Speyer Photography

Farm & Craft offers a juice program that features cold pressed juices and “Kombucha Cocktails”. Signature “Cold Pressed Cocktails” use organic spirits are available at the indoor/outdoor bar as are local beers and unique wines poured from the tap.

With the 2016 opening of the Scottsdale location and the anticipated success of the Phoenix location, Riot Hospitality plans to continue to expand the Farm & Craft brand locally and nationally.

Farm & Craft will be at 5538 N. 7th St. Phoenix 85014.

Former music venue to become Casa Amigos and Sky Lanes

The restaurant business is not the only local industry that is also in the constant state of flux, so is the live music venue industry as smaller venue continue to seek your entertainment dollar. Scottsdale’s Livewire became a recent victim and shut its doors a few months back. Evening Entertainment Group(EEG) are quickly transforming the two-story building into Casa Amigos and Sky Lanes with an anticipated opening before year’s end.

The $4 million dollar renovation started over the summer with the authentic Mexican restaurant Casa Amigos occupying the ground floor space with the lounge and state of the art bowling alley Sky Lanes upstairs.

Sky Lanes lounge. Photos courtesy of EEG & MMPR Marketing

EEG’s owners Diane and Les Corieri are  familiar with the building and the Scottsdale Entertainment District having run several nightlife venues in the area for almost 20 years. They are working with  decorator Alison Victoria who many may recognize from HGTV’s “Kitchen Crashers” and who the Corieri’s hired to design their central Phoenix restaurant Casa Anejo which opened last year.

“This location has always been special to Diane and me,” says Les Corieri, co-owner of Evening Entertainment Group. “From our original ultra-lounge and nightclub, Axis-Radius, to the former Livewire music hall, this space has always been a landmark in the Scottsdale nightlife scene. So when we looked to launch a new concept, we knew we had to go all out and create a one-of-a-kind experience that speaks to the way people like to nightlife today-casual yet stylish dining in an indoor-outdoor that setting takes advantage of Arizona’s wonderful weather. And then with Sky Lanes we know there a market for fun, cocktail-friendly entertainment with a high-energy vibe.”

Casa Amigos

The Santa Barbara inspired designed restaurant will serve traditional Mexican fare for the nightclub crowd that will include tacos such as octopus and picadillo beef, a build your own Guacamole menu, shared plates and entrees that include a bacon wrapped Sonoran dog and Veracruz grilled swordfish.

Handcrafted cocktails, cold beers along with an extensive list of premium sipping tequilas and mezcals will be available as will several varieties of Margaritas.

Sky Lanes

Upstairs the state-of-the- art bowling alley and lounge will impress even the Scottsdale crowd with its retro modern decor. The boutique bowling alley will offer bottle service in the lounge and classics jams of the 80s & 90s will keep the energy going while guests bowl the night away.

Casa Amigos and Sky Lanes will be at 7340 E. Indian Plaza, Scottsdale 85251.

 

Market Street Kitchen hosts Tiki Thursday Fundraiser for Puerto Rico hurricane victims

Add Market Street Kitchen to the list of  restaurants stepping up to the plate to raise money for the recent string of hurricanes that have affected people in the south-east United States and Caribbean. This Thursday October 5th MSK will host a special Tiki Thursday from 4 p.m. – 9.m.

All proceeds from a select menu of Puerto Rican inspired dishes and cocktails will be matched and donated to Unidos por Puerto Rico helping those on the island commonwealth that suffered severe damage from Hurricane Maria. Guests who come dressed in tiki themed attire will receive cocktails for $10.

Appetizer                                                                                                                                   Chicharrones dusted with a spiced Puerto Rican rub  $6

Arroz con gandules (Puerto Rican fried rice)  $9 bacon, rice, pidgeon peas cooked down in a soffrito of oregano, garlic, onions, cilantro, olives, tomato, capers and saffron

Entrée                                                                                                                                   Puerto Rican spiced (garlic, dried peppers, oregano, salt, pepper) Rotisserie pork butt  $19 served with sauteed peppers, onions, garlic and potatoes seasoned with citrus glazed with pineapple spicy BBQ sauce

Dessert                                                                                                                                   Piña colada cheesecake  $8

Drinks  $14                                                                                                                       Piña Colada                                                                                                                         Mojito                                                                                                                                        MaiTai                                                                                                                                           Scorpion Bowl

Market Street Kitchen is at 20825 N Pima Road, Scottsdale, Arizona http://marketstreetkitchen.com/

 

Bobby Q’s brings tasty BBQ to the Camelback Corridor

Restaurateur Bob Sikora knows a thing or two about opening successful restaurants having opened Bobby Mcgee’s nightclubs growing it to 24 locations around the country and founding Mr. Lucky’s country bar with Willie Nelson. After traveling the country for years searching out and learning about BBQ he opened his first Bobby Q’s Great Steaks & Real BBQ in north Phoenix in 2005 before the BBQ trend started here in Phoenix.

On Monday October 2nd he opens his third Bobby Q’s at Camelback Rd. & 32nd St. I had the opportunity to visit the restaurant to preview it.

The dark & brick walled the restaurant has a cozy atmosphere with the exhibition kitchen just inside the front door. Two almond/mesquite wood smoker and rotisserie are situated inside the kitchen smoking BBQ favorites brisket, pork & beef ribs, sausage links and more. The aroma will sure get people’s attention as people wander the its strip mall location.

Tastes of BBQ

My guest and I sampled a few dishes on our visit courtesy of Bob and his team. Executive chef  Mark Hittle and his kitchen team hand run all the meats with their signature rub before they are slow cooked.

We started with the Cajun Shrimp appetizer that are sautéed with Cajun spices and served with garlic bread to mop up the juices. The 6 shrimp were a  good size, had nice seasoning and disappeared pretty quickly.

If you know me you then you know I’m a rib man and went with the Baby Back Ribs that were fall off the bone tender and made me a happy man. The brisket we sampled had the right amount of fat and bark to put up against any brisket around town.

On the side we had the Pecan Cole Slaw which was shredded thin, not to creamy as many can be and topped with crushed pecan adding a nice twist and texture. The side of Mac & Cheese won’t disappoint fans of the cheesy favorite.

We were given a bag of warm mini donuts from the donut machine and are free to all guests who dine at restaurant.

The full menu includes steak, fish, burgers, salads and rotisserie chicken that can be seen on Bobby Q’s website. I can see why Bobby Q’s has garnered many accolades from Yelp!, Open Table and Trip Advisor.

Hand crafted cocktails

In-house mixologist Chris Ortega has created a cocktail menu with his take on classic cocktails that include an Old Fashioned that I enjoyed prepared with rye whiskey and barrel smoked maple syrup. Other cocktails include the refreshing Watermelon Cooler and Bobby Q’s version of the classic Mule cocktail. All cocktails are prepared with premium spirits, fresh fruits and house made syrups.

Old Fashioned. All photos courtesy of Bobby Q’s

The Camelback location will serve lunch and dinner 7 days a week at 11 a.m. and will stay open until 2 a.m. Tues. – Sat. serving a late night menu. Sun. & Mon. they will be open until 10 p.m.

Bobby Q’s Great Steaks and Real BBQ is at 3154 E. Camelback Rd. Phoenix 85016