Updated: Nice weather to sip and savor for Social Hour on the patio at Beckett’s Table

Update: Beckett’s Table continues to serve  Social Hour but no longer serves it on the patio. It is only in the bar or at the community table.

The calendar may say it’s still winter but our Phoenix temperatures feel like spring has sprung and there is now better way to celebrate our beautiful weather than patio dining at Beckett’s Table. Come join chef and owner Justin Beckett on the patio for Social Hour daily from 5-6:30 and enjoy Happy Hour pricing on selected eats and drinks through the spring.

Beckett’s Table ‘s signature cocktail The Palmaire. Photo courtesy of Serendipit Consulting

Enjoy your time on the covered wrap around patio sipping on a glass of wine or a signature cocktail including The Palmaire which is made with Pomegranate liquor and juice, orange vodka, house made honey, syrup, lemonade and mint. In between sips, taste bites of the creative cuisine of chef Beckett who sources much of his fresh ingredients from within 30 miles of the restaurant.

Beckett’s Table is at 3717 E. Indian School Rd. Phoenix 85018. http://beckettstable.com/

 

Burger Battle returns to see who makes the Best Burger in the Valley

The Scottsdale League of the Arts annual Burger Battle returns this Thursday March 9th with more burgers, beers and fun to its new location at the Scottsdale Waterfront at 7 p.m.

The Burger Battle is one of the non-profits more popular events which helps raise money for artists, art programs and art education through several fund-raising events throughout the year.

This years Burger Battle will be emcee’d by local sports writer and sports  talk show host Dan Bickley. Burgers will be served from local restaurants such as Hand Cut Burgers, Aioli Gourmet Burgers and Arizona Wilderness Brewing Company.

In between tasting burgers, side dishes and desserts attendees will be able to play lawn games and dance to the sounds of The Groove Merchants.

After tasting burgers patrons will be able to cast their vote for the People’s Choice Award for Best Burger while 5 judges will be selecting the Judge’s Choice Award. 2 winners will then compete in the World Food Championships in November.

Tickets for the competition are $65 when purchased in advance or $75 at the door. VIP tickets are available for $85 and include early entry at 6 p.m., a VIP gift and access to a private lounge. This is a 21 and over event. Tickets can be purchased at http://scottsdalefest.org/

 

 

The 2nd annual Barrel & Board moves to SoHo63 this Thurs. Feb. 23rd

If you like to sip on barrel aged whiskey & beer while eating cheesy treats then this Thursday’s Barrel & Board tasting event is for you. One of the Scottsdale League of the Arts fundraising events moves to downtown Chandler’s SoHo63 for the 2nd annual tasting.

Barrel & Board photos courtesy of Landon Evans & HDE Agency

The 3 hour event pairs local craft brewers & distillers and their barrel aged libations with cheesy & tasty bites from local restaurants including The Perch, Aioli Gourmet Burgers and more. You can cast your vote for best cheese pairing while listening to local acoustic guitarist Tom Kumagai perform live.

Tickets purchased online are $50 & at the door are $60 while supplies last and include unlimited cheese samples & tasty bites, 4 oz. beer samples, 1 oz. whiskey samples and commemorative tasting mug.

Barrel & Board will be held at SoHo63, 63 East Boston Street, Chandler, AZ.  For tickets and more information, visit http://www.scottsdalefest.org/

Here is a partial list a brewers, distilleries & restaurants participating.

12 West Brewing

Arizona Brewery Tours

AZ Distilling

Brat Haus

Campari

Chicago Distilling

Dragoon Brewing Co

Elizabeth’s Moments of Joy

Four Peaks Brewing Company

Glenfiddich

Grand Canyon Brewing Company

Hamilton Distilling

Helio Basin Brewing Company

Hudson Whiskey

Huss Brewing Company

Modern Tortilla

Mother Road Brewing Company

O.H.S.O. Distillery + Brewery

Russell’s Reserve

SanTan Brewing Company

Two Brothers Artisan Brewing

Uncle Bear’s Brewery

Wisconsin Cheese Market

Wren House Brewing Company

Yancy’s Fancy Cheese

 

Chef Charles Wiley to open Hearth ’61 at new Mountain Shadows resort

A lot has been going on the last few years at the corner of 56th St & Lincoln Dr. in Paradise Valley as the old Mountain Shadows resort makes way for the new & modern Mountain Shadows resort. Phoenix area foodies have been anxiously awaiting what popular chef Charles Wiley will be doing with the resorts signature restaurant. We now know he will be opening Hearth ’61 in early March.

The seasonal ingredient driven restaurants name Hearth ’61 pays tribute to 1961, the year Paradise Valley was incorporated and a “Hearth” being a centerpiece of the resort and the Paradise Valley community.

Duncan carrots

Chef Wiley will be using his friendships he’s built over the years at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain and at Hotel Valley Ho’s Zuzu with farmers and other local purveyors to fuel his menu that will marry rich flavors with traditional cooking styles and techniques on the evolving menu. The restaurant will be open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. A few of the dishes from the menu are…..

Niman Ranch Dry Aged Tomahawk- A 40-oz. bone in rib-eye, dry aged 28 days, roasted garlic, rosemary truffle butter

George’s Bank Sea Scallops – sauce romesco, buttered mushrooms, ancient barley, charred spring onion, fennel pollen

Charred Eggplant & Hayden Mills Ancient Grains – red quinoa, white sonora & farro berries, shiitake mushrooms, asparagus, roasted peppers, ricotta salata

Ginger Roasted Carrots – tahini yogurt, chervil

Floor to ceiling windows to view the surrounding Camelback & Mummy Mountains and desert, a sunken living room lounge, open kitchen and above ground wine cellar surrounded by glass are just a few of the design and decor features that honor a time from the past along with modern ambience.

The 5’s courtesy of Hearth ’61

“It is truly an honor to be a part of this iconic project, the rebirth of Mountain Shadows,” said Wiley. “We will rely on all the relationships we’ve cultivated over the years with local farmers and artisans to craft a rustic yet vibrant cuisine. The culinary team we’ve assembled is nothing less than extraordinary, and we’re excited to present menus featuring a perfect balance of innovation and tradition”.

The inventive menu of chef Wiley’s at Hearth ’61 will be complimented by an ingredient driven cocktail program that features 2 original cocktails, The 5 C’s referring to Arizona’s cotton, copper, cattle , citrus and climate industries which will feature locally distilled Commerce Gin, grapefruit & lemon juice and muddled basil leafs. The Forty-Rod which uses High West whiskey, corn milk, lime juice, ginger – cayenne syrup and garnished with a corn husk is inspired by the strong whiskey drinks of the old west.

 

 

 

MATCH Cuisine & Cocktails now serving brunch on weekends

If you’re like me, an early riser who eats breakfast well before the sun rises during the winter months, it means you probably want lunch when some still have not had breakfast. This common occurrence is best served on weekends when many restaurants serve brunch to appease both the early & late risers. Now you can enjoy brunch at MATCH Cuisine & Cocktails on Sat. & Sun. from 10:20 a.m. – 4:20 p.m.

MATCH Cuisine photos courtesy of Je-Hyen Valdez

Inside the FOUND:RE Hotel in Phoenix MATCH Cuisine started 2017 by serving brunch that will evolve over time to include Executive Chef Akos Szabo’s take on Dim-Sum but currently includes a menu that is inspired by food from around the world with ingredients that come from closer to home. A few of the delicious brunch menus dishes include……

Filipino Chile Relleno with longanisa sausage, mozzarella, charred tomato, cojita cheese and Mexican oregano, $14
Adela’s Enchiladas with top knot farm chicken, salsa verde, avocado crema and crisp lettuce
Braised Korean Rib Lettuce Wraps with pickled carrots, coriander, Thai basil, gochujang aioli, lime and salted cashews, $15
Not Your Basic Chick with a sweet potato waffle, crispy fried chicken and Caribbean hot sauce, $13
Additional menu items include organic yogurt & granola parfait with seasonal berries at $9 and the Plato Paisa with wood grilled steak, plantains, crispy chicharrones, longanisa sausage, avocado, black beans, crema and fried eggs ($21).
MATCH Cuisine & Cocktails and FOUND:RE Hotel is at 1100 N. Central Ave. Phoenix 85003. http://www.MatchPHX.com

The Market Restaurant + Bar by Jennifer’s hosts Meyer Family Cellars wine dinner

Wake up folks & shake off that holiday hangover, things are about to rock n roll on metro Phoenix’s restaurant, wine, beer & cocktail scene in 2017. One of the 1st events is the Meyers Family Cellars Wine Dinner at The Market Restaurant + Bar by Jennifer’s on Wed. January 11th.

Photo courtesy of Meyer Family Cellars 

Wine and food pairings

The 5 course family style dinner will pair white & red wines from Meyer Family Cellars with a delicious sounding menu from Jennifer’s loaded with vegetables, meats and seafood from locally sourced purveyors. Here is a peek at the menu.

Meyer Family Chardonnay- Escarole + pear + Marcona almonds + parmesan + creamy Sumac dressing

Crab Gnocchi-House made dumplings + lump crab + ricotta + roasted tomatoes + creme + basil + wilted greens + ricotta salata

Meyer Family Syrah-Crispy pork belly + spiced plum sauce + grilled plums + lemon + chive. Organic Polenta + Hayden Flour Mills Organic Yellow Polenta + grilled corn

 Meyer Family “Fluffy Billows”- Miso marinated + red wine braised short ribs + roasted baby tri-colored carrots + cipollini onions + broccolini + crispy shallots

Meyer Family “Spitfire”- Sharp cheddar + pistachio + honey. Danish blue + pear + mache. Comte + dried fruit + caramelized pecans

Meyer Family Cellars

Like many small wineries it’s a family affair started at a young age, which is how Matt Meyer caught the wine bug. Hanging around his families winery & vineyard at Silver Oak down in Napa Valley, Matt realized he would carry on the family love for northern California and wine making.

Matt and his wife Karen share wine making responsibilities at the Mendocino county winery. Karen got hooked on wine after working a harvest in Margret River near her childhood home of Perth, Australia. The couple met in 1999 when both were working crush at Argyle Winery in Oregon.

Matt’s mom Bonny runs the business side of the winery much like she did in the Silver Oak days. She is Bonny from the famed “Bonny’s Vineyard” bottling from Silver Oak.

Reserve your seat

This dinner starts at 6:30 and costs $70 per person. Reservations can be made by calling 602-579-5327. The Market is at 3603 E. Indian School Rd. Suite A. Phoenix 85018. http://themarketphx.com/

 

Char Kitchen + Bar opens in former Bink’s Scottsdale space

When word spread earlier this year that Kevin Binkley would close his Scottsdale restaurant his followers were perplexed, relief came when word spread that a new Mediterranean restaurant, Char Kitchen + Bar would take its place. Char Kitchen is owned by a family of restaurant veterans, the Micakaj family, most notably is daughter & sister Pauline Martinez, co-owner of Scottsdale’s Perk Eatery. Peter, the father has owned & operated restaurants in Michigan for years and son Pal has honed his restaurant skills working with his dad.

Chicken Lollis
Char Kitchen + Bar Chicken Lollis

My fellow restaurant bloggers and I were treated to Micakaj’s hospitality to taste several of the menu items that are influenced by the family’s Albanian heritage along with other eastern European and Mediterranean favorites.

“We look forward to serving our neighbors the kind of food we serve in our own home with the same, familiar atmosphere,” said Peter Micakaj

char kitchen + bar’s menu

Char uses locally sourced ingredients when possible and here are a few of the favorites we tasted. From the Starters part of the menu which we tasted the Chicken Lollis ($9), eaten off the bone that is bathed in a Pomegranate Harissa BBQ sauce, topped with crumbled Feta cheese and pickled onions. Sweet and savory this was a favorite to eat with great presentation. Prefer a bit of a kick to start off your meal, the Siracha Chicken Skewers ($8) offer just that with juicy char grilled chicken served over Basmati rice.

The Grilled Pork Chop ($24) seemed to be the favorite of the night with its Bing cherry and red wine reduction that gave a kiss of sweet flavor. Seared cabbage and lightly crisped potatoes offer a crisp texture to compliment thick cut juicy pork chop that offered enough to take home leftovers. Chicken ($17) & Steak ($19) Skewers come served over Basmati rice and offer a traditional style meal found in often in eastern Europe. Grilled Lamb Chops ($32) comes 4 to a plate and are soft and drizzled with Chimichurri sauce that will make not want to leave any meat on the bone. A pile potatoes and vegetables accompany the lamb chops.

Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Cake
Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Cake

Save room for dessert, especially the Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Cake that was both sinful and delicious to end our experience. Sandwiches, pita, salads and skewers and more are available make return visits inevitable.

Char Kitchen + Bar is open daily for lunch and dinner and is at 6107 N. Scottsdale Road 85250 (480) 664-9238 http://charkitchen.com/

 

 

 

 

2nd annual Phoenix Pizza Festival is a slice of heaven

It’s food festival season here in the Phoenix area with restaurants, food trucks, bartenders & foodies prepping their favorite food & drinks for the masses on a weekly basis. Saturday November 19th brings us the 2nd Annual Phoenix Pizza Festival as it converges on Margret T. Hance Park in downtown Phoenix.

Logo courtesy of Phoenix Pizza Festival
Logo courtesy of Phoenix Pizza Festival

festival pizza makers

15 pizza makers including Fabio on Fire, SuperFarm SuperTruck, La Piazza Al Forno Phx and Dough Mama will give the estimated 3,000+ festival attendees the opportunity to buy slices, full pies and more. Craft beers from Helio Basin Brewing Co, That Brewing Co. and other brewers along with wines will be available to pair with your pizza. Lawn games and live music will be adding to the festive food atmosphere.

downtown phoenix Inc.

Part of the proceeds from the pizza festival will be given to the Downtown Phoenix Inc. as it continues to promote the development & re-vitalization of downtown Phoenix with events and strategic partnerships.

tickets and info

Tickets for the Phoenix Pizza Festival are $10 and only available on online at http://www.phoenix.pizza and are limited. The festival runs from 11am- 5pm & Margret T. Hance Park is at 1202 N. 3rd St. Phoenix 85004. Free parking is available around the park and light rail stops 3 blocks from the park.

 

 

Sushi Roku is celebrating it’s 8th anniversary and is giving you the gift with 50% off dinner

Sushi Roku at the W Hotel celebrates its 8th anniversary this week and it’s the customers who are being given the gift of half off all food. Whether your there for the stylish & delicious sushi or the authentic Asian delicacies, all your food will be 50% off when you guarantee the offer by making a reservation for the any evening this week, Monday, Oct.10th – Thus. 13th. Walk-ins are welcome, seated on a 1st come 1st serve basis.

Photo courtesy of Sushi Roku
Photo courtesy of Sushi Roku

The W Hotel is at 7277 E. Camelback Rd. Scottsdale 85251 (480)970-2121 http://www.sushiroku.com

 

 

 

Chandler’s El Palacio Mexican Restaurant gets a new look and new menu

Angilberto and Isabel Serrano opened the first El Palacio Mexican Restaurant 34 years ago with 1 restaurant in Bullhead City, AZ. They now have 5 restaurants throughout central and northern Arizona and 1 in Laughlin NV. Recently the Chandler location did some updating to the look of the restaurant and to the menu that debuted in early September.

Photo courtesy of El Palacio
Photo courtesy of El Palacio

El Palacios new menu items

In addition to a fresh coat of paint, new flooring and updated decor El Palacio added several new items to the menu including…..Flash Fried Cauliflower Nachos $9, a Sonoran Dog $7, Salmon Tacos $14, Fried Chorizo Quesidilla $7 and several others.

Photo courtesy of El Palacio
Photo courtesy of El Palacio

events at el palacio

On Saturday, October 1st El Palacio will be hosting a Mexican Brunch Feast that will offer those in attendance a cooking class where they will learn to make Chiaquiles, Huevos Rancheros, Margaritas and Michelidas. The cost for the class is $15 per person and includes the cooking class, brunch and a cocktail. The class starts at 10am and reservations can be made at http://bit.ly/2aZ8JfE

Chef and Owner Anthony Serrano will be traveling to Orange Beach, Alabama in early November to compete for the 3rd time in the World Food Championships. In 2013 Serrano came in 2nd place and in 2014 he placed 14th.

Cauliflower Nachos photo courtesy of El Palacio
Cauliflower Nachos photo courtesy of El Palacio

The Chandler location is in the Crossroads Towne Center at 2950 E. Germann Rd. Chandler 85249. (480)802-5770 http://www.epfamilyrestaurants.com