With traveling to Italy still not possible with the continued caution around Covid-19, Honeybee Events & The Herb Box brings the Amalfi Coast to Scottsdale. The Vino ed Estate (Summer & Wine) Dinner on May 21st will transport you to the Mediterranean and immerse you in a 6-course dinner created by Chef Marissa Delgado and pairing it with wine and cocktails.
“We’ve crafted an elegant 6-course dinner with accompanied wine pairings to highlight the authentic Italian dishes featured for the evening. Our goal is to transport our guests to the Amalfi Coast for the night, and our specialty menu has been thoughtfully crafted to reflect this. One of the dishes we are featuring for the event is the Spaghetti alle Vongole – al dente spaghetti tossed with extra virgin olive oil, fresh baby clams, and finished with fresh parsley and parmesan. We’re excited to explore our culinary creativity with this refreshing coastal summer themed event.” says Delgado.
Live music will set the mood for night that begins at 6:45 p.m. at the Scottsdale restaurant. “The Herb Box is so excited to partner with Honeybee Events for Vino ed Estate (Summer + Wine) Dinner. This event will showcase our newly opened Scottsdale & Shea location with the the perfect, summer themed party. The Honeybee Events team consistently brings unique, innovative ideas to life. We’re looking forward to our ongoing partnership with them and making beautiful events available to the Scottsdale community.” says Susan Wilcox, Owner of the Herb Box.
Reserved seats are $205-$250 depending upon add-ons including small & large fresh floral bouquets inspired by the blooms of Sorrento are available for pre-purchase. Ticket options include the VIP Pavilion, reserved tables of 2 or 4 and General Admission. Tickets can be purchased and more information can be found at Eventbrite. The Herb Box is at 7000 E. Shea Blvd. Scottsdale 85254.
Saturday May 1st brings the return of The Kentucky Derby and in Phoenix that means the Bulleit Bourbon Derby DayClub at Turf Paradise. After 2020 cancelled the Spring event and moved to an audience-less September running of the ponies guests are welcome back to sip on Mint Juleps, dress up and bet on your favorite horses. The 2021 Derby DayClub will have 3 separate viewing areas all with limited capacity and following CDC protocols.
Reserving a seat and tickets
Reserve a table in the Sanderson Lincoln Black Label Lounge air-cooled tent close to the finish line. Betting terminals, a no-host bar serving Mint Juleps, champagne & cocktails and 65″ TVs are all close to food trucks and refreshments. Tables start at $250 for 2 and up to tables of 8 for $1000. Some packages offer complimentary champagne and food.
The Ketel One Botanical Garden offers an open air tent closer to the finish line further back off the track. Tables include a bucket of Ketel One Botanical Vodka Spritz Seltzers and access to betting terminals and more. Tables of 4 start at $275 and up to $400 for front row seating.
The new VIP Winner’s Circle covered tent and offers the best view of the finish line. Guest in the Winner’s Circle have access to the other tents and comes with a complimentary Mint Julep, French Fry Bar, large screen TVs, access to betting terminals & food trucks and a no-host bar. Tables of 4 start at $750 and up to 8 for $1,600. All tables include a complimentary bottle of Veuve Cliquot or Chandon Champagne.
General Admission to the DayClub are $30 until April 15th, $35 after the 15th and $40 at the door. General Admission does not include a reserved seat. All ticket can be purchased and more information found at their website. Gates open at 10:45 a.m., Turf Paradise live racing at 11:30 a.m. and the Derby broadcasted live at 4:05 p.m.
Quick sips & bites of news about what’s going on around the Phoenix restaurant community, breweries and wineries.
Jungle Vino available at Pita Jungle for National Drink Wine Day
The new private label wines from California’s Dunnigan Hills will be available at all locations on Thursday February 18th. The Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon are produced by Matchbook Wines and is $18 a bottle and $5 a glass at happy hour.
Bashas donates Paczki sales to St. VdP on February 16th
On Fat Tuesday the local grocer will donate 10% of sales of the Polish fruit filled pastry to St. Vincent de Paul. Customers who snap a selfie with the Paczki can tag @bashasmarkets on Facebook and Instagram and #PaczkiSelfie for a chance to win a$100 gift card. $.75 per or $2.99 for 6.
Bottomless fries at Hopdoddy Burger Bar for Fat Tuesday
The Camelback and Scottsdale burger joint kick off Mardi Gras with more fries than you can eat. All day you can choose from Parmesan Truffle, Green Chile Queso, BBQ Ranch and more. Available for dine-in or take-out.
Sazerac Cocktails & Craft buys new motor scooter for disabled vet
The downtown Phoenix bar raised money and donated their own to buy customer and disabled veteran Dave Little Eagle a new ride. Injured in a 2015 parachuting accident in Afghanistan old scooter broke down and couldn’t get in touch with the VA. Too watch the moment when Dave’s new scooter presented to him you can watch the video here.
Still time to make plans for Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day is this Sunday and if you and your sweetheart don’t have plans yet this post will give you plenty of dining out or take-out options from local restaurants.
The popular and award-winning cocktail bar Undertow has taken its below ground concept to street level with a pop-up at the Hotel Valley Ho. From August of 2016 to December 2020 was housed below Sip Coffee & Beer Garage in Phoenix, a converted quick oil change business. With Covid-19 taking over 2020 owners Rich Furnari and Jason Asher decided to move Undertow next door to its Century Grand location.
In addition to the new Undertow, Century Grand will be adding new concepts Platform 18 and The Grey Hen Rx with construction ending in March. Until then Undertow has taken over the former Trader Vic’s restaurant at the Scottsdale hotel for a 4-day a week “Best of Menus Past” pop-up.
“UnderTow has a strong following, and we always wanted to have a little more space to accommodate additional guests and larger parties, all without compromising the intimate guest experience” says Furnari. With UnderTow’s lease ending in 2020, and our difficult decision to permanently close the restaurant element of Century Grand, there was a prime opportunity to re-locate UnderTow into a larger space in the same geographic neighborhood. In addition, the more flexible physical infrastructure in the new location will allow us to continue to offer our guests the most advanced and enjoyable immersive environment for years to come”.
The two have worked day and night with Hotel Valley Ho’s Food and Beverage Director Andre Nicholson to bridge the gap until construction ends in Phoenix. Housed in the Sands venue at the hotel, the pop-up will be open Thursday through Sunday serving many retired top-selling signature cocktails. Limited food will be served from local chefs who will rotate their own pop- up restaurant. A Sunday market could also be added once things are up and running and the tiki/tropical decor from local artists gives Undertow its laid back vibe.
Hotel Valley Ho is at 6850 E. Main St. Scottsdale 85251 and you can find more information about the pop-up at their website.
2020 brought many surprises good and bad to the valley’s dining scene. One of the biggest surprises was the return of restaurateur Peter Kasperski in December. He and valley mixologist Richie Moe III have again joined forces to open Character Distinctive Dining in the Roosevelt Arts District. The two have known each other for over 30 years going back to their days in Chicago when Moe’s father was Kasperski’s mentor.
Moe helped Kasperski open Cowboy Ciao in the 1990s then Kazmierz Wine Bar before they went their separate ways. Moe had gone on to open and run cocktail programs at Citizen Public House, The Gladly and Bourbon and Bones. Kasperski has been lying low the last few years plotting his next move since he closed Cowboy Ciao.
Downtown Phoenix’s Character Distinctive Dining is a classic American dinner house with cuisines from around the world made using modern cooking techniques. Kasperski’s love for eclectic wines and Moe’s inventive cocktail list have also made their way downtown from Scottsdale. Some will see similarities with Cowboy Ciao especially the popular dinner events. One of those events is the monthly Somm Showdown with Peter Kasperski and a local wine sommelier go head to head picking the best pairings for a five-course dinner. The first Somm Showdown is Sunday January 24th 2021 with Synergy Fine Wines’ Steve Cannon. Seating is limited to 30 people and dinner is $90 ++ per person.
The pair are also opening Alias, a speakeasy, later this year out back of Character. Three nights a week Moe and Chef Justin “Red” Hauska will create mixology/gastronomy dinners pairing cocktails and food with science and surprises. After dinner starting at 9 p.m. Alias will become a craft cocktail bar until 2 a.m.
Character / Alias is at 218 E Portland St. Phoenix, AZ 85004. For more information check their website, Facebook and Instagram.
Restaurants are putting 2020 behind them and moving forward with new locations in 2021. Dog Haus, the gourmet hot dogs and sausages fast casual concept will open another location along Tempe Town Lake at the new Watermark Tempe. Expected to open in early in the New Year Dog Haus joins Sweet Republic Ice Cream, Monroe’s Hot Chicken and Crumbl Cookies at the mixed-use development.
The Watermark Tempe Dog Haus will be franchisee Jeron Boemer’s second location in Arizona, his first is in Yuma and opened in 2015. “I am excited to bring Dog Haus’ unique and delicious offerings to the Tempe community. Having found this ideal location, I know the Dog Haus culture of serving excellent food with welcoming service in a fun atmosphere will be embraced by the vibrant and growing Tempe neighborhood.”
Joining gourmet hot dogs on the menu will be Black Angus burgers, one of a kind fried chicken creations, side dishes and 24 craft beers on tap. Signature Haus cocktails are being crafted by Phil Willis of “Bar Rescue”. The 2,444 square foot restaurant includes a full bar and dog friendly patio.
Guest’s favorite hot dogs include Sooo Cali, with wild arugula, avocado, tomato, crispy onions and spicy basil aioli, and the Reservoir Hog, featuring a Polish kielbasa, Haus chili, Haus slaw and yellow mustard. Haus burgers include The Freiburger®, with white American cheese, fries, Haus slaw, fried egg and mayo, and the Holy Aioli, with white American cheese, smoked bacon, caramelized onions and garlic aioli. Burgers are made with beef from humanely raised Black Angus cows and all sausages and hot dogs are free of added nitrates and made with hormone- and antibiotic-free meat.
Dog Haus Tempe Biergarten will be at 430 N. Scottsdale Rd 85281. For more information and updates visit their website.
Old Town Scottsdale went a little bit country last month when honkytonk themed Belle’s Nashville Kitchen swung its doors opened. Comfort food classics with a Nashville twist are served day and night from award-winning Chef Samantha Robert’s kitchen.
Longtime Scottsdale residents may remember the building its housed in, the popular Lulu Belle’s, the Gay 1890’s themed restaurant and bar in the 1960s- 90s. The back bar still remains from its original use as owner Mike Haley wanted to celebrate the buildings history and kept the part of the name as a reminder along with the bar and front striped facade. Much of the wood is re-claimed from Haley’s patio at his home in California. It wouldn’t be a honkytonk without live music and dancing that is being phased in with local musicians. Guitars line the back wall as do wagon wheels on the walls opposite the bar.
Chef Roberts previously developed menus for Scottsdale’s Riot Hospitality Group (El Hefe, Riot House & Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row) where she won the 2017 Foodist Award for “Best Chef”. The menu includes Nashville favorites Kool-Aid Pickles, a Nashville Hot Chicken sandwich, Honkytonk Fries and Jambalaya. Other favorites include a Poke board and Mac n Cheese Sandwich. Don’t miss out on Pig Candy, thick cut bacon candied in-house and topped with Pralines. Weekend brunch is served with Hot Chicken French Toast, Belle’s Biscuits and Gravy and Cowboy Breakfast.
Whiskey and bourbon signature cocktails including the Cold Brew Old Fashioned, The Pal Manhattan are served as are other classic cocktails.
Belle’s Nashville Kitchen is at 7212 E. Main St. Scottsdale 85251. Their open Monday – Thursday from 11 a.m. – 1 a.m. Friday til 2 a.m. Saturday from 9 a.m. – 2 a.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. – 11 p.m. For more information visit their website.
Quick sips of news about what’s going on around the Phoenix restaurant, beer & wine community.
20% off your at OHSO Brewery Arcadia donated to AAWL
To celebrate Oktoberfest the brew pub with dog friendly patio will donated 20% of sales from 4-8 p.m. Sunday October 18th to the Arizona Animal Welfare League. AAWL is the state’s largest & oldest no-kill shelter saving thousands of lives.
Local pumpkins sourced for Los Sombreros dishes
Abby Lee Farms and Crooked Sky Farms have provided all three of the Mexican restaurants with pumpkins for 2 seasonal dishes. Pumpkin Soup ($10) and Pumpkin Flan ($8) will be available until October 31st. The feature is part of the restaurants Los Local Love program helping to support Arizona farms and foods.
Fall weather brings seasonal food to Trapp Haus BBQ
With the return of cool weather the popular downtown Phoenix BBQ joint has brought back its popular Texas Burnt End Chili. $6.99 gets you cup and $9.99 gets you a bowl of the juicy & tender beef brisket ends. Wash it down with a Wicked Caramel Apple Cider cocktail for $10. The Fall favorite is made with cinnamon whiskey, apple cider and a caramel drizzle.
Chase’s Diner dishes out Pumpkin Pancakes in October
If pumpkin spice your seasonal favorite head to the Chandler diner who is serving up stacks of their pancakes made with the ingredient. The rich & fluffy pancakes are dusted with powdered sugar and served with real whipped cream sweet butter and maple syrup. A short stack of 3 is $8.79 and a combo plate with 2 pancakes, 2 eggs and bacon or sausage is $8.39.
Twin Peaks Restaurant is raising money for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Donate by putting a name of someone on a pink ribbon to be put on the dining room wall of the 3 locations around Phoenix. All money collected in October will be donated locally to the Phoenix chapter of the American Cancer Society. On October 24th the restaurants participates in Strides Ride for Phoenix.
You can celebrate Happy Hour from the comfort of your own home with the new Happy Hour To- Go packs from Black Angus Steakhouse. Whether your’e watching the game or hanging with the family, score the new To – Packs every day from 3 – 9 p.m.
For just $29.99 you can get Black Angus Steakhouse favorite appetizers such as Loaded Potato Skins, Three Cheese Garlic Bread, Crispy Fried Garlic -Pepper Zucchini and a Steak Quesadilla. You can’t have happy hour without something to drink and choose a 4-pack of beer or bottle of house wine. For $5 more customers in Arizona and California can get small batch cocktails like Strawberry Lemonade and the Gold Strike Margarita. Cocktails serve 6-7 people each.
There are 4 Black Angus Steakhouse’s in Arizona in Arrowhead, Chandler, Goodyear and Superstition Springs. Other locations are in New Mexico, California, Washington and Hawaii.
You can order your To-Go Packs online or by calling each restaurant directly. To-Go Packs are available through the end of 2020.
Central Phoenix’s Taco Guild has one of the best tequila collections in town with over 200 bottlings. On National Tequila Day, next Friday July 24th the restaurant is offering off the menu cocktails for tequila enthusiasts. As you sip on tequila and pair them with tacos you can flip through the leather bound “Tequila Bible” to see all the favorite tequila brands and exclusive bottles.
National Tequila Day cocktails include The Beginner made with blanco tequila, strawberry, lime & agave. The Purist mixes El Tesoro Reposado with Topo Chico bottled water and a slice of orange. The Sophisticated is a tequila old fashioned with barrel aged Patron Anjejo. All three cocktails are $10.
Prefer your tequila neat or by the shot, enjoy Fortaleza Blanco ($9), El Tesoro Paradiso ($15) or Tapatio Reposado for $8. Top secret tequila flights are available so just ask one of the restaurants tequila connoisseurs about them.
National Tequila Day will be celebrated all day from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. with happy hour from 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. Taco Guild is at 546 E. Osborn Rd. Phoenix 85012.