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/

 

Spring Training returns to Phoenix with home run food & drink deals

In just a few days umpires around the valley will be yelling “Play ball” starting the month-long 2017 Cactus League season for baseball teams and fans. Restaurateurs are well aware of locals and the influx of visitors to see their favorite teams and many are offering a game day and month-long food and drink specials around the Phoenix area. Below is a list of restaurants offering spring training deals around the Phoenix area.

Chompie’s Chipolte Ranch burger

The Scottsdale Charros

If you don’t want to miss any of the fun, you won’t have to stray from the Scottsdale Stadium to get a delicious bite to eat. The Scottsdale Charros make Spring Training an experience to remember with the Charro Lodge. This unique and special feature of Scottsdale Stadium is the perfect spot for a VIP feel with the patio-style seating with all-inclusive food and beverage.

You also get an outstanding view of the game you can’t find anywhere else in the stadium. You won’t find old fashion ballpark food here! The Charro Lodge has had a variety of local and national restaurants showcasing their menus, including Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, Cold Beers and Cheeseburgers and Postino. All proceeds from the Lodge go right back into supporting local charities and SUSD schools.

Kelly’s at SouthBridge

To enjoy the cool weather and feel the awesome Old Town atmosphere, hit Kelly’s at SouthBridge before or after your spring training game. Their spacious outdoor patio, adorned with bright red umbrellas, is hard to miss. Kelly’s is just a few minutes away from Scottsdale Stadium and is the perfect place for some pre/post game day drinks. Kelly’s is at 7117 E 6th Avenue, in Scottsdale. For more information, visit www.kellysatsouthbridge.com.

Thirsty Lion Gastropub & Grill

Heading to Sloan Park or Scottsdale Stadium? The patios at Thirsty Lion in Tempe and Scottsdale are the perfect place for a quick drink either before or after those spring training games. You’ll find great food, more than a dozen big screen TVs and over 50 beers on tap. Don’t forget to take the trolley from Tempe Marketplace to Sloan Park! For more information, visit thirstyliongastropub.com.

Burger Theory

Burger Theory is surrounded by FIVE Spring Training facilities! They will have a weekly drawing now through the end of March to win a pair of game tickets. Bring in your baseball ticket from any facility after the game and receive 10% off of your bill. Want to stay longer than a post-game lunch?

Stay and play at Burger Theory with their Room with a Brew hotel package. This package includes your choice of two craft beers daily! Enjoy them at the pool, in Burger Theory or delivered to your room. Burger Theory is at 4401 E. McDowell Road. For more information, visit www.burgertheoryphx.com

Photo Courtesy of Fired Pie

MATCH Cocktails & Cuisine

Cubs fans can hang out at the Cub Hub at the Found:RE hotel and take advantage of daily specials at MATCH Cocktails & Cuisine 7 days a week from 4:20 – 6:20 pm. With a Windy City menu created by executive chef Akos Szabo just show your game day ticket and get 10% off your bill. Just look for the W flag hanging outside the hotel at 1100 N. Central Ave., Phoenix. https://www.foundrehotels.com

Drexyl Modern Cuisine

Show your ticket stub from that day’s game at Drexyl and receive a $1 You Call It glass of wine, beer or spirits with your purchase. Limit 1 per customer. Drexyl is at 8877 N Scottsdale Rd #402, Scottsdale

El Palacio

Craving Mexican food? Head to El Palacio in Chandler and they will give you half off any appetizer with your game day ticket all month-long. El Palacio 2950 E Germann Rd, Chandler, AZ 85249 http://www.epfamilyrestaurants.com/

Chompie’s Deli

Who doesn’t love Buy 1 Get 1 Free and all 5 Chompie’s area locations are offering a free Angus burger or Hot dog free with the purchase of 1. With 6 burgers and 2 hot dogs to choose from this dine in deal is home run. Not valid on March 17th. For a Chompie’s location near you check out www.chompies.com

Fired Pie

If pizza is your go to game day meal the Fired Pie’s Mesa Riverview’s location will give you a $1 off any entree w/ a Sloan park ticket stub and give you a free ride to see the Cubs play at nearby Sloan Park. Fired Pie at Mesa Riverview is at 1003 N. Dobson Rd www.firedpie.com

 

 

 

 

 

Tucson’s OBON Sushi Bar Ramen opening in Scottsdale in the spring

Sliding into the space that used to occupy TK’s Tavern at the Scottsdale Quarter, OBON Sushi Bar Ramen will debut this spring from Tuscon based Fukushu Restaurant Concepts.  The Asian influenced eatery is known for its traditional Japanese ramen and sushi with Korean flare and its well received craft cocktail program.

OBON’s Steamed buns

OBON founder Brando Katz is a veteran of the restaurant industry having worked as a regional manager for RA Sushi and in several restaurant positions in Tucson for more than 10 years until he went to open his own restaurant with partner Andrew Joffroy in 2015.

“Expanding this concept into the valley has been a longtime dream of ours since opening our first location in Tucson” says Katz. “From our diverse menu to our innovative cocktails and hip yet approachable atmosphere, I truly believe that we’ve created a unique dining experience that will resonate with people.”

The kitchen will be led by chef Paulo Im and the menu will highlight its OBON sushi, a variety of ramen along with steamed buns, Katsu pork and chicken teriyaki.

The bar program created by Beverage Director Matt Martinez has garnered accolades locally being named “Restaurant Bar of the Year” by Tucson Bar Awards and Martinez being named Tucson’s Bartender of the Year and Bombay Sapphire’s Most Imaginative Bartender. In addition to craft cocktails OBON will also offer sake, wine and craft beer.

Check back for updates for more information, a full menu and opening date.

 

 

Sweet treats & wine at the Chocolate and Wine Experience on Jan. 27th.

Nothing says decadence and delight on a Friday night than chocolate and wine do and if both tickle your fancy the way it does mine then circle Friday January 27th on your calendar and get your tickets for the Chocolate and Wine Experience at The Saguaro Hotel in Scottsdale.

This tasty event is hosted by The Scottsdale League of the Art as it kicks off its 2017 fund-raising season by bringing together chocolate from local chocolate makers, gourmet cuisine and local wines and craft beers. Highlights of the evening include a s’mores station,  a chocolate 101 teaching, chocolate martinis and a spiked hot chocolate bar.

Guests attending the Chocolate and wine Experience will taste samples of chocolate from Zak’s Chocolate, Nutwhats, XO confections and more. Food, wine and beer will be provided by EVO, Aioli’s Gourmet Burgers, Yancy Fancy Cheeses, Grand Canyon Brewing Company, Aridus Wine Company and others.

The Walken’s will be performing a wide range of classic cover tunes as guests meander through the night enjoying the festive atmosphere.

The money raised helps the non-profit Scottsdale League of the Arts support and promote the arts and arts education throughout the Phoenix area with several popular fundraisers a year including the Scottsdale Culinary Festival and The Friends of James Beard Benefit Dinner.

Pre-sale tickets are on sale for $60 and early admission for $75 with entry an hour earlier & a champagne welcome. Tickets at the door will be $70. All guest will enjoy un-limited tastes of food, 12 drink sample tickets and access to all activities. The doors open at 7pm for early guests and 8pm for general admission.

The Saguaro Scottsdale, 4000 N Drinkwater Blvd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 and tickets can be purchased at http://www.scottsdalefest.org/

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.

 

Pillsbury Wine Co. pairs wine with food at House of Tricks for exclusive dinner.

Sam Pillsbury owner & winemaker of Pillsbury Wine Co. will be pouring his wines alongside the flavorful foods prepared by the House of Tricks kitchen on Thurs. Jan. 12th 2017.

The evening will include a four course dinner along with wines direct from the winery in Cochise County where Sam grows and produces his award winning wines.

Photo courtesy of House of Tricks

As you sip your wine & savor the flavorful foods Sam will be talking about his wines, the Arizona wine industry and why the wine & food for the dinner were paired with each other.

The setting for the dinner is the highly acclaimed House of Tricks in downtown Tempe that is know for it’s seasonal menu of local ingredients, creative wine list and intimate dining patio dining.

Experience more experiences in 2017

I’m not of fan of “year in review’s” (do we really to review of 2016 again) and “best of” lists but thinking how to end the year with a post I find it would be valuable to review some of my journey of 2016 and give myself a clearer path for 2017’s journey.

The year that was 2016

The year of 2016 was a year of transition taking on new challenges in my real estate career but you don’t want to hear about that do you (if you do check my real estate blog http://www.SandySellsRealEsateAZ.com) . Leisure wise my blog and influence has found structure with regular posts on restaurants events and news, wine, beer and more for Phoenix, Arizona and beyond. My burger reviews came to a screeching stop with the Examiner as they shuttered in early July. As you can imagine my burger consumption feels as if it’s slowed and I will make up for that in 2017 I’m sure. 2016 was pretty much a fun year personally and an interesting year to be on planet earth.

2016 was the 1st year in  long while in which I did not set foot on an airplane as the only travel was out-of-state heading to Laguna Beach for a weekend in February to play poker at uncle Bob’s house. In 2017 I will definitely return to the friendly skies for travel with travel planned for Florida and beyond as the year goes on.

Visits to restaurants and meals with friends this year included returning to favorites of the past such as Zuzu, Zinburger, Caffe Boa, RnR among many more and made 1st visits and bites from restaurants such as Drexyl, Char Kitchen + Bar, Ahi Poke, Worth Takeaway along with a long list of others.

Despite the running around I missed out on one of my favorites sandwiches all year…The Il Purista at Defalco’s Italian Deli in Scottsdale. A monthly visit for me, this pile of prosciutto and hand pulled mozz is a reward I will grant myself in the 1st couple of days of 2017. Other foods I’ve denied myself(not many) will find a home in my belly again in 2017.

Experience more experiences in 2017

I’m not much of a goal setter or resolution maker at year’s end but I want to experience more experiences in 2017. Simple and frivolous such as learning to like and enjoy Caesar salads or starting a new exercise regimen or months ahead a plan to do and see more via short and long-range travel in this my bounce back year. Listening to classical music is a genre I would like to enjoy more of and have already started as Kalinnikov’s “Symphony #2 In A  Major” is playing as I post these words for you. Soothing and sometimes mellow classical music can be relaxing during life’s hectic pace.

Continuing to break bread and raise a glass with my Friday lunch crew & with fellow bloggers, foodies and friends, new & old,  always remain high on my list.

For Pulling Corks and Forks I hope to resume and grow these words and forge new relationships & partnerships while continuing to share my experiences and provide insight & inspiration so every body can experience more experiences through senses of sight, taste, smell and hearing. Plans continue to grow my social media presence and share what I know will be high on my list.

To follow my 2017 journey of food, wine, friends and other worldly experiences please subscribe to this blog or follow me on Twitter @SandyWasserman Instagram @SandyWass or Like on Facebook www.facebook.com/pullingcorksandforks

See you in 2017!