Arizona’s Grabbagreen continues local & out of state expansion

Healthy eating continues to become more convenient in Arizona and beyond as the 4-year-old Scottsdale based Grabbagreen has agreed to open 2 new locations in the southeast valley. In a franchise agreement with brother and sister Matt Black & Janae Furr of Black & Furr LLC it will make for the company’s 80th franchise agreement since they started franchising in 2015.

In addition to the Queen Creek & Chandler locations other Arizona franchisees will be opening locations around Phoenix. A Gilbert location at Loop 202 & Gilbert Rd, is their 1st east valley location that opened this past Monday. A second Scottsdale location at Scottsdale Rd & Bell Rd. will open in May bringing a total of 8 Grabbagreens in Arizona.

Fresh pressed juice. Photos courtesy of Grabbagreen

Grabbagreen serves healthy fast food that is made to order with green based super foods on a menu that includes ingredients that are naturally gluten-free, preservative and GMO free along with proteins that are hormone and antibiotic free and the menu is mostly organic. The menu includes bowls, fresh pressed juices, handcrafted smoothies, Acai bowls and a kids friendly menu. Signature items are available along with a “Grab Your Own” option based on individual dietary needs.

“Living in Arizona, we have been big fans of Grabbagreen since it opened its first location in 2013” say Matt Black. “Grabbagreen was the obvious choice for us. We fell in love with business opportunity that Grabbagreen brings to our family and we can’t wait to grow the Arizona -based brand and bring healthy fast food to the East Valley.”

Grabbagreen has 15 restaurants in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, New Jersey, North Carolina, Tennessee and Texas with plans to open 20 more in 2017.
For more information and to find a location near you visit http://www.grabbagreen.com/

Liberty Station opening in February by owners of Market Street Kitchen

Options are good and the residents of north Scottsdale will have another dining option when Liberty Station opens in February. The new restaurant will be where Scottsdale Rd. meets Carefree Highway and is from Keeler Hospitality Group, owners of Market Street Kitchen in DC Ranch.

The menu will be focused on American comfort food with a regional twist including specialties from Boston where the Keeler family is from. Lunch and dinner will be served with Executive Chef Michael Hunn and Chef de Cuisine Dan Watts running the kitchen where they will source local ingredients for much of the menu.

Creekstone Farms will be supplying the meats with much of it being smoked in-house in a custom smoker and will include Texas brisket, Carolina pork shoulder and my favorite, St. Louis spare ribs.

The bar will include classic cocktails, local craft beers and a variety of wines.

“Liberty Station is truly the definition of ‘neighborfood.’ You will enjoy a scratch-made meal that is relatable and incredibly tasty, while greeting friends and neighbors in our very comfortable dining room. We’ll have community tables, a very large bar and two patios. We want our neighbors to become friends at Liberty Station,” said Paul Keeler, President of Keeler Hospitality Group.

Liberty Station will be a place for all to enjoy as their will be vegan and vegetarian options including Vegan gnocchi and a Portobello sandwich on Udi’s bread and over a dozen Gluten-free options. A few of the menu highlights will be….

  • Tavern Mac & Cheese with cheddar cream, bacon breadcrumbs and Pasilla chiles, $10 (shared appetizer).
  • Piggy Wings, grilled pork shank with sticky BBQ sauce, $9 (shared appetizer).
  • Liberty Chopped Salad, with white balsamic dressing, roasted butternut squash, pomegranate seeds and pepitas, $8
  • Boston Lobster Roll with lemon aioli and celery on a brioche roll, $18 (lunch menu).
  • All American Chicago Hot Dog with mustard, tomato, onion, house relish and sport peppers, $8 (lunch menu).
  • Chopped Brisket Grilled Cheese with smoky cheddar cheese, pepper jack cheese and a grilled tomato, $12 (lunch menu).
  • New England Clam Boil with Littleneck clams, rock shrimp, new potatoes, corn and hot link sausage, $24 (dinner menu).
  • Kobe Meatloaf with shoestring onions, ketchup vinegar glaze and mashed potatoes, $17 (dinner menu).

Once opened Liberty Station will be serving lunch daily at 11:30 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. Dinner service begins at 5:00 p.m. nightly. Happy Hour is offered at the bar Monday – Sunday from 3:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. Brunch will be served Sundays from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.

 

German Osio’s Kale & Clover: Mindful Kitchen to open soon in north Scottsdale

The newest entry into the Scottsdale restaurant scene will be Kale & Clover: Mindful Kitchen from Osio Culinary Group. It will be the 4th restaurant from restaurateur German Osio which include Central Bistro in Phoenix, SumoMaya & Local Bistro in Scottsdale. Kale and Clover will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and will feature clean and healthy food and drinks available to dine in or carry out making it convenient for all.

Chris Mayo will be executive chef and be moving up north from Central Bistro and has spent the last few months planning the mostly vegetarian, vegan and gluten free menu. Diners will have the option to add protein if they like.

“We are using responsibly-sourced, seasonal ingredients and have taken special care to focus on nutritional balance and flavor,” Mayo said. “It has been a treat to work on Kale & Clover’s menu, to sink into the taste of the high-quality ingredients we have selected and combine them in complementary ways so that the food pops with flavor.”

A few of the menu’s signature dishes include…
· Superfood salad: kale, romaine hearts, shaved local vegetables, avocado, almonds, apricots, lemon dressing.

· Faux Pho: red miso shiitake broth, rice noodles, tofu, Thai basil, sprouts, chilies, lime.

· Avocado summer roll: pickled veggies, mint, house made sambas.

· Caramelized cauliflower: caper-raisin jam, lentils, local carrots, curry vinaigrette.

· Seared Salmon: red quinoa, marinated cherry tomatoes, avocado, light herb vinaigrette

Cold pressed juices, agave sweetened drinks and espresso drinks will be available along with craft beers and wines.

“My hope is that Kale & Clover makes it easier for people to eat healthily. Our menu is chef-crafted, so it will appeal to everyone—even those who shy away from healthy ingredients,’’ Osio said. “We offer breakfast, lunch and dinner so that the option for clean food is always available. And our grab-and-go and eat-in components are intended to provide utmost convenience.”

Kale & Clover: Mindful Kitchen will be located at 20511 N. Hayden Road at Hayden Peak Crossing in Scottsdale, the same shopping plaza as Osio’s sister restaurant, Local Bistro. Kale & Clover will be open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

Momenti Local Pizzeria & Zoyo Neighborhood Yogurt to donate 50% of sales to Phoenix Children’s Hospital

Momenti interior Neighborhood Concepts, creators of Zoyo Neighborhood Yogurt & Momenti Local Pizzeria have announced that as part of Momenti’s Grand Opening both concepts will donate 50% of all sales to Phoenix Children’s Hospital on Fri. June 27th at their Tatum & Shea location in northeast Phoenix.

Momneti opened softly in early March and is now celebrating its fast casual pizza concept with the community and fund raising for Arizona’s premier children’s hospital.
momenti pizza
Momenti offers 6 signature pizzas along with countless combinations to build your own pizza that use high quality ingredients and daily made in house dough. Gluten free dough is also available from local bakery Gluten Free Creations. Entree sized salads are also available.

This being the 1st location of Momenti there are plans for more according to Momenti founder Aaron Klusman “Create-your-own personal pizzas and customizable frozen yogurt are the perfect family dining experience. We expect this combination to be so popular that we’ll be opening approximately three more Momenti Local Pizzeria’s throughout the Valley by the end of 2014.”

Momenti Local Pizzeria is located at 4740 E. Shea Blvd., Ste. 109 Phoenix, Ariz., 85028. Momenti is open for lunch and dinner, Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. For more information, call 602-971-0234 or visit www.momentipizza.com.

Zoyo Neighborhood Yogurt in Northeast Phoenix is located at 4740 E. Shea Blvd., Ste. 108 Phoenix, Ariz., 85028. Zoyo is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. For more information, call 602-765-2448 or visit www.zoyogurt.com.

Hey Jerky, Golden Island Pork Jerky now available in Costco

Golden Island jerky

Calling all Jerky fans, Golden Island’s www.goldenislandjerky.com Grilled Barbecue & Korean BBQ pork jerky is now available in your local Costco. Golden island is the leading brand and manufacturer of gourmet jerky for over 60 years. Based in Rancho Cucamonga CA. they’re known for their own marinating and cooking method that includes grilling the meat. The pork jerky is made with no preservatives, no nitrates and no fillers, the meat comes from premium pork hams.

Jerky is great for snacks and active lifestyles as it is packed with 8 grams of protein and up to 60% less sodium per serving than other jerkies. The Grilled Barbecue jerky has the flavor of Spare Ribs found in Chinese restaurants while the Koren BBQ flavor has a sweet and smoky flavor and both taste as if they came right of the grill. Both flavors can be very addictive. The Korean BBQ recipe is gluten free.

These jerkies are well worth picking up a bag or two on your weekend trip to Costco.

An afternoon at The 3rd Annual AmeriCAN Beer Festival.

AmeriCAN festivalThis past weekend Scottsdale Civic Center Mall welcomed the 3rd Annual AmeriCAN Beer Festival in celebration of American Craft Beer Week. The festival is hosted by Chandler AZ’s San Tan Brewing Company whom packages all their beers in either cans or kegs. You may ask what makes this beer festival different from other beer festivals. This festival featured only beers packaged in cans, and why cans….well for several reasons according to Joe Burns of Tampa’s Cigar City Brewing. Cans protect the beer from UV light, no oxygen in cans, are easier on the environment and are better for using for recreational purposes i.e on boats, around pools and water, especially in Florida.

Now that you know why cans, here is some of the samples of beers I enjoyed from some of the 60 breweries in attendance from all over the United States.
Dc Brau
DC Brau www.dcbrau.com from our nations capital opened for business on April 15th 2011 and is DC’s 1st production brewery in almost 60 years. DC Brau makes 10,000 barrels a year and distributes throughout D.C. and northern Virginia. Lead Shift Brewer Christopher Grahm was their 1st employee and tells me they currently can 6 beers including their 3 flagship beers The Citizen, The Public and The Corruption. I tasted the limited release “El Hefe Speaks” Hefeweizen which was crisp, cold and tasted like a German style hefeweizen.

Another D.C. area brewery that came out west for the festival was Lost Rhino Brewing Company www.lostrhino.com/ from Leesburg Virginia. Sampling their Pilsner I found it rich and creamy. A hint of spice made this beer quite the thirst quencher.

Beers are not known to be gluten-free with their use of wheat and barley, but Joseph James Brewing Company www.foxbrews.com in Henderson, Nevada makes the a the only gluten-free canned beer in the world. The Fox Tail Gluten Free Ale uses nectars instead of wheat. This lighter bodied ale also no sorghum (a grain used in making of alcohol) instead using organic rice, nectars and hops. This ale tasted very good and I wouldn’t have known it was gluten -free as tasted good as any ale using wheat.

Joseph James Brewing Co.'s Fox Tail Gluten Free Ale
Joseph James Brewing Co.’s Fox Tail Gluten Free Ale

For the cider enthusiast for which I am one, there were a few ciders in cans including Vermont Hard Cider www.woodchuck.com pouring their original Woodchuck Cider which is made from apples and is also gluten-free. Cold, crisp and clear this golden cider goes down very well and could be habit-forming. If you prefer your cider on the dry side then you can find Crispin’s “Brown Lane” Classic English Dry Cider which is one of their imported ciders. www.crispincider.com
San Tan Brewing Co.'s "Mr Pineapple" wheat beer
San Tan Brewing Co.’s “Mr Pineapple” wheat beer

As fruit beers are becoming more popular, a few are being canned and were being poured including Abita Brewing’s Purple Haze which uses raspberries in the brewing process, Redd’s Apple Ale from Tenth & Blake Beer Company, San Tan Brewing Co.’s “Mr. Pineapple” Wheat beer and Maui Brewing Co.’s CoCoNut Porter. All had a hint of fruit used with Redd’s Apple Ale having the strongest fruit flavor.

Grand Canyon Brewing Co. www.grandcanyonbrewery.com/ out of Williams AZ won Gold medal for their Sunset Amber in the “Amber & Brown” beer categories. Making 30,000 barrels a year this beer is distributed in Arizona & Nevada.

Nothing goes better with beer than food and several food trucks were there to provide use with something to wash down with a cold beer including Brat Haus, The Grilled Cheese Truck and Tom’s BBQ. There were several bands playing throughout the afternoon including Good Rust, Pride Through Strife, 80 proof and Boom Shed for you to get your groove on.

Nothing beats a cold beer on warm day in May and although you may have to wait til next years 4th Annual AmeriCAN Beer Festival www.cannedcraftbeerfest.com/ doesn’t mean you can’t wait to find your favorite canned beer. Many retailers including Whole Foods stock an impressive array of canned beers to get you through the summer months and beyond. Cheers!