Scottsdale’s Babbo Italian Eatery home to 50 pound cheese wheel

If you’re a fan of savory cheeses like me then the new 50 lb. cheese wheel at the Scottsdale location of Babbo Italian Eatery should be of interest. The bowled out Parmesan wheel is 9 in. tall and 17 in. wide and will be used to prepare a weekly special created for the occasion.

Babbo Italian
Photos courtesy of Babbo Italian Eatery

Those guests that want to taste the cheesy creation will be able to Wed.- Sun. To find out what each week’s new dish will be the restaurant will be releasing it on their Instagram page @BabboItalianEatery

There are 8 family owned Babbo Italian Eatery’s around the Phoenix area with Scottsdale location at 8840 E. Indian Bend Rd. 85258. To find a location near you visit their website.

Crust re-locating around the corner in McCormick Ranch

Scottsdale’s Crust neighborhood Italian eatery closed the doors on the original location on Indian Bend recently. Come August owner Michael Merendino opens the flagship restaurant a mile up Hayden Rd. to 3,500 square foot location in the hip Mercado de Lago retail center.

The larger, state of-the-art location will offer guests a welcoming atmosphere as they enjoy the same delicious east coast Italian food Crust has offered over the years. An outdoor patio is expected to be popular as is the 25 seat bar where diners will enjoy an extensive wine and beer list from around the world along with a hand crafted cocktail menu.

Merendino will continue to be community minded with the Crust Cares program and thanks the community for their continued support.

If you can’t wait for the new Scottsdale location to open check out their downtown Chandler location at 10 San Marcos Pl. 85225.

Crust will be at 8300 N. Hayden Rd. Suite F101.  Scottsdale 85258. For more information see their website.

 

Local restaurants entice Cactus League fans with food and drink specials

The games have begun for the month-long Cactus League season and Phoenix area restaurants are tempting baseball fans and locals to stop in with food and drink specials. Here are a few local restaurants to cheer your favorite team at before or after the game.

Cactuss League
Photo courtesy of Kassidy McDonald

Cactus League food specials

Fired Pie’s locations in the Phoenix area are offering game day ticket holders 10% off when they dine in after the game. To find a location near you check their website.

Thai Chili 2 Go is giving away a free dumpling appetizer at all 5 valley locations with purchase and a game day ticket stub. To find a location and hours check here.

Photo courtesy of Cider Corps

Mesa’s Cider Corps is extending their hours thru March 31st and offering a $1 off all pints when you bring in a same day ticket stub from Mesa’s Hohokam Stadium and Sloane Park. Hours are 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. Mon. – Sat. with food trucks on site Fri. & Sat. http://cidercorpsaz.com/

One of Tempe’s newest restaurants Quartiere welcomes baseball fans to come check out their community driven Italian restaurant.  Until April 1st fans can bring any 2018 Spring Training ticket stub for 1/2 off an appetizer or entrée when you purchase an entrée. Pizzas, pastas, salads and more are available at Quartiere

McFate Brewing is bringing fans attending games at Scottsdale Stadium a pop-up beer garden beyond the center field fence at The Clayton House. On game day the beer garden opens 90 minutes before game time with live music, food and of course beer.  No ticket necessary.  The Clayton House is at 3719 N. 75th St. Scottsdale.

 

Quartiere serves Italian food in community gathering spot.

With successful beer and pub grub establishments like Boulders on Broadway and others in the east valley restaurateurs Erick and Rochelle Geryol switch gears to open Quartiere.

Their new Tempe restaurant opened quietly in December serving  Italian food with the SLOW movement in mind and it also serves a a community gathering spot.

Quartiere
Fresh bread

What is Quartiere?

Quartiere translates to “neighborhood” in Italian and serves hand tossed pizzas, fresh breads, entrées and appetizers.  Local ingredients will be used when seasonally available.  Quartiere serves “dishes for the people” include antipasto plate ($11.99), Chicken Frito salad ($9.99) and Short Rib Ravioli ($15.99). Pizza’s start at $9.99.

“The Quartiere is a little different for us. Even though it’s on the main road, once you walk through the gates, it’s like a little hideaway,” said Rochelle. “We’re looking forward to being a spot where friends and families can meet, and we’re excited to be able to share foods made with local ingredients with our neighbors.”

Beers and wines are poured from a tap along with selections by the bottle including an Italian house wine that compliment the food.

Mozza sticks

Dog friendly patio, Happy Hour and more.

The 5,000 sq. ft restaurant also includes a shaded dog friendly patio if your bringing your 4 legged friend out for a bite to eat.

Happy Hour starts at 3 p.m. til 6 p.m. Monday – Friday with guests enjoying $1.25 off wine, beer and spirits. Tuesday bring a $5 wine & appetizer tasting and on Wednesday 1 topping pizzas are 1/2 price and $4 rotating beer special.

Bring you Spring Training game ticket stub from February 23rd – April 1st and buy entrée or appetizer at regular price and get a 2nd of equal or lesser value at 1/2 price.

Quartiere is at 2700 S. Mill Ave. Tempe 85282 and more information can be found on their website.

 

Festive holiday cooking classes planned for Scottsdazzle

The festive holiday season is almost upon us and brings the return of the month long celebration Scottsdazzle. Over a dozen events planned along the canal at the Scottsdale Waterfront and in nearby old town.  One of those events is a series of cooking classes by local chefs for three Saturdays in December.

Tamale Making at Barrio Queen

Barrio Queen is hosting a tamale making class on December 2! Guests will have a hands on experience with Chef Julio, making tamales and learning about their history. Attendees will also receive a recipe to make tamales at home. The event is limited to 20 people and the proceeds will be donated to a children’s charity.

 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. $10, tickets by calling 480-656-4197

7114 E. Stetson Dr.

Marshmallow Making at Super Chunk Sweets & Treats

On Saturday, December 9, local pastry chef Country Velador will teach guests to make marshmallows in festive flavors! Participants will create marshmallows in flavors such as peppermint candy, cocoa or pumpkin spice. They will also learn how to dress the mallows up using cookie cutters or molds and how to cut them perfectly for homemade hot chocolate or wrapped up as gifts for loved ones.

2:30 p.m.

7120. E 6th Ave. #19

$35 per person. Space is limited to 15 guests. Call (602)736-2383 or stop by the shop in person to pay in advance. No refunds will be given for cancellations made less than 10 days before the class.

Italian Holiday Traditions with Chef Marcellino

Chef Marcellino Verzino is hosting a holiday cooking class on Saturday, December 16. The class, titled “Christmas Eve in Italy,” will allow participants to have fun while learning a few of chef’s secrets in making his handcrafted cuisine.

1-3 p.m. $35 per person, tickets at (480)990-9500

Marcellino Ristorante 7114 E. Stetson Dr.

To see a full list of Scottsdazzle’s month long events go to http://www.scottsdazzle.com/

 

Lunch & Learn at Marcellino Ristorante

If you’ve ever wanted to learn what makes classic Italian cuisine so good now’s your chance as Chef Marcellino Verzino of his namesake restaurant, Marcellino Ristorante is hosting 2 Lunch & Learns  in coming weeks sharing his secrets and recipes.

Pasta & Pesto

Saturday March 18th is when 16 lucky guests will pull up a seat at the chef’s island and will watch and learn as chef Marcellino creates his homemade pasta and delicious pesto.

Gnocchi & Tomato Sauce

Come back on Saturday April 22nd and learn how he makes his Gnocchi and light tomato sauce as you watch chef gracefully make his way around the exhibition kitchen preparing his delicious potato dumplings.

Only 16 seats are available for each of the classes that will start at 1pm and conclude about 3pm. Attendees will dine on salad,  pasta and dessert after his cooking demonstration. Cost for each of the exclusive Lunch & Learns are $35++.

Reserve your seat by calling the restaurant at 480-990-9500.

Marcellino Ristorante is at 7114 E. Stetson Dr. Scottsdale 85251. http://marcellinoristorante.com/

 

 

 

Grand Opening event planned for My Pie in Gilbert

Gilbert is the home of the 3rd branch of locally owned fine casual My Pie with its Grand Opening event today starting at 11a.m. Located at Crossroads Towne Center on Gilbert Rd. at Loop 202. My Pie specializes in custom made pizzas($7.95 & $8.95), calzones, salads, pie-inis and appetizers.

The Spicy Butcher
The Spicy Butcher

Today’s events will include free samples of their delicious Garlic Knots, kid’s activities, live entertainment and giveaways until the close tonight.

My Pie uses fresh & locally sourced ingredients for its family recipes with sauces & dough made daily. Favorite pizzas I tasted recently were the Pesto My Chicken, Spicy Butcher and the Margherita. All pizzas are made New York fast in a 800 degree oven in 2 minutes. Gluten free and whole wheat dough are also available.

According to Ryan Mitchell, vice president of operations for My Pie, “I’m thrilled to open our third Arizona installment of My Pie. This has truly been a labor of love and an amazing dream realized for myself and my team. We have our sights set on continuing to grow this awesome concept through a love for our customers, friends and community. Our goal is to become your neighborhood pizzeria at each of our locations. It all starts with giving back and we can’t wait to develop strong relationships in the east valley,”

Wanting to take an increased role as part of the Gilbert community and express one of My Pie’s core values, they offer local charities to apply for “2 Minutes 2 Charity” fundraising events. Part of sales from today will be donated to “A Broader Approach”, a Gilbert organization that assists parents in researching biomedical treatment for their children with autism. http://www.abroaderapproach.org/

My Pie Gilbert is located at 3765 S. Gilbert Road, Gilbert, AZ 85297 and is open daily from 11a.m. – 9 p.m. with extended hours on Friday and Saturday until 9:30 p.m http://www.pizzayourway.com/ 

The much awaited Fat OX opens in Scottsdale

One of the highly anticipated restaurants of 2016 has finally opened as Fat OX debuted in late November in the former home of The Quilted Bear & Davanti Enoteca at Lincoln Dr. & Scottsdale Rd. Headed by executive chef Matt Carter & his partner Brian Raab at The Mission & House Brasserie and longtime restaurateur Mark Drinkwater of Drinkwater’s City Hall (now Mastro’s) & Stella.

Fat OX executive chef Matt Carter. Photo courtesy of Nicky Hedayatzadeh
Fat OX executive chef Matt Carter. Photo courtesy of Nicky Hedayatzadeh

The Fat OX menu is inspired by Italian countryside ingredients including poultry, steak and seafood. Also on the menu are house made pastas, hand pulled cheeses and the signature Caesar salad prepared at your table. Much of the menu is slow roasted over a mesquite wood grill including a 28 oz. Porterhouse steak then carved table side by the skilled wait staff.

Photo courtesy of Nicky Hedayatzadeh
Photo courtesy of Nicky Hedayatzadeh

The care taken to prepare and present the food pays tribute to the horsemen of the Piedmont & Tuscan cattle country of Italy who raise the their prized bue gasso, Italian for Fat Oxen, as they herd them to the town of Carru hoping to win the title of Fat OX Fair champion at the popular Fiera del Bue Gasso.

fat-ox-inside-b05394f4-cf7a-465e-b474-be7a6fd7dc98
Photo courtesy of 3rd Story

Like in Italy you can’t eat without drinking wine with your meal and a worldly wine list is available from the in-house sommelier. Italian inspired cocktails and craft beers are available to pair with your dinner if you choose.

The dinner only restaurant seats 350 guests indoors and on the patio for al fresco dining. A hidden private dining room is available for events complete with its own bar, kitchen and staff.

Fat OX is open nightly for dinner Sunday through Thursday (5 – 10 pm) and Friday through Saturday (5 – 11 pm) with weekend brunch coming soon and is at 6316 N. Scottsdale Rd.(Lincoln Plaza) Scottsdale 85253 (480-307-6900) www.ilovefatox.com

Crudo to host 3 Italian winemakers at dinner on Sept. 21st

Whats goes better with Italian food paired with Italian wine, not much unless you’re in the company of 3 Italian winemakers who will discuss their wines being poured and paired that evening. This will be the reality on Wed. Sept 21st when Cullen Campbell, executive chef & co-owner of the award-winning Crudo hosts a 4 course Italian wine dinner with the wines imported by Kobrand.

Attending winemakers

It’s always a treat when you get to hear the inspiration and philosophy of winemakers about the complexity that goes into making wine. With that in mind Ernes Scardova of Medici Ermite, Giovanna Moretti of Tenuta Sette Ponit and Giovanni Folonari of Tenuta Di Nozzole & Camp Al Mare will all be flying in from Italy to enjoy the company of attendees and share their passion for Italian food and wine.

Crudo menu pairing

The 4-course dinner will cost $75 ++ per person and will start at 6pm and reservations are required. Reservations can be made by calling 602-358-8666 http://www.crudoaz.com. The menu is as follows…

1st Course
Albacore Crudo | Fermented Chili & Citrus Paste| Garlic Chives
Campo al Mare Vermentino di Toscana 2014
2nd Course
Butcher’s Pate|Truffle Conserva| Noble Bread
Medici Ermete Concerto Reggiano Lambrusco 2015
3rd Course
Gargati |Two Wash Farm Ragu|Basil
Tenuta Sette Ponti “Crognolo” 2014
4th Course
Teres Major Steak|Oxtail| Roasted Fingerlings| Salsa Delle Erbe
Tenuta di Nozzole “La Forra” Chianti Classico Gran Selezione 2012

Zappone’s Italian Bistro offers cooking class

Zappone's Italian BistroEver wanted to learn how to cook a few classic Italian dishes, well Zappone’s Italian Bistro and chef Sal is willing to teach you with its Summer in Calabria Cooking Class on Saturday August 13th at their Gilbert restaurant. This 4-course class, lunch & beverage is only $44 and recipes are included.

You will learn to prepare, cook & eat…..
Insalata Verde (Baby greens salad)
Zucchine ripiene con ricotta (Zucchini stuffed and baked with ricotta, cheese, egg and parsley)
Cannelloni (Homemade pasta wrapped around a filling of fresh ricotta, spinach, parsley, egg and pecorino cheese)
Pesche con Crema (“Peaches” with pastry cream)

Class starts at 12 noon and tickets can be purchased at www.zapponesbistro.com
Zappone’s Italian Bistro 1652 N Higley Rd #103, Gilbert, AZ 85234 (480) 218-2338