Sips & Bites: News from the Phoenix restaurant community

Quick sips & bites of news about what’s going on around the Phoenix restaurant community, breweries and wineries.

The TLC eXperience returns with Friendsgiving at Agritopia

The monthly supper club is back after taking the summer off with its first dinner of the season Friday, November 18th at Agritopia in Gilbert. Seating is limited for the 4-course dinner created by Chef Tom Baumbach and his team. Cocktail hour starts at 5:30 with dinner at 6:30. Tickets are $150 per person and can only be purchased here.  Tables of 8 or 10 are also available for purchase.

Michael Waltrip Brewing Co. Craft Beer & Music Festival happens Saturday

Tomorrow November 5th welcomes NASCAR fans, country music lovers and beer drinkers to Bell Bank Park starting 6 p.m. The popular Hillbilly Deluxe is the headliner with DJ Jeffro and the Get Lit Dancers opens the show. VIP Happy Hour hosted by Michael starts with early entry at 5 p.m. Tickets for the 21+ older festival are available at BellBankPark.com or at Tixr.

Press Coffee opens today inside Sprouts

The first in-store location of the locally owned coffee roster is now open inside the Sprouts at 3320 N. 7th Ave. Phoenix. All weekend long small drip coffees are $1 and all of the proceeds will be donated to Phoenix Children’s Foundation. Give away will be happening on Saturday and Sunday with more details here.

Loco J’s Tacos & Tequila now open in Cave Creek

Navy veteran Jason Clouse opened his new taco joint in this week making it the first Mexican restaurant to open in town in a long time. He was the former owner of nearby Rosati’s Pizza and sold it to focus on Loco J’s. The restaurant is at 28260 N. Tatum Blvd. and opens daily at 3 p.m.

LDV Winery hiring for their Scottsdale tasting room

Looking to make some extra money for the holidays or keep up with inflation, put your wine knowledge and customer service skills to work in the fun and friendly atmosphere.  Submit your resume to info@ldvwinery.com and learn more about the winery at their website.

Check out my podcast Pulling Corks & Forks: The Podcast with Sandy Wasserman to hear from those in our community. Please subscribe, like & comment.

YC’s Mongolian Grill opens a new Scottsdale location

Locally owned YC’s Mongolian Grill returned to Scottsdale last week with the opening its new Loop 101 & Raintree location. Loyal customers couldn’t wait to get back to building their own stir fry bowls as was evident when I visited with owner Geoff Stansic recently. The previous Scottsdale location was at The Pavilions but was shut down with the other 4 locations due to the pandemic. As the pandemic waned and the economy improved Stansic decided to re-open 3 of the locations in Gilbert, Tempe and Scottsdale with a 4th location slated to open sometime in 2023.

“After a tough few years of working through adversity during the pandemic and beyond, we are ready to open the doors to an all-new YC’s experience and reconnect with our Scottsdale customers,” Stanisic said. “We take pride in the food we serve and love being able to provide our customers with the best ingredients and a bowl full of authentic flavor.”

Stansic took over in 1996, five years after the first location in Tempe was opened by the original owner YC. He knew a thing or two about the restaurant business as he was kitchen manager for Hyatt Hotels and Houston’s before going into business for himself. It shows as he greets his returning customers by name, knows what bowls they will build and sauces they will have them tossed with. He even has a few signature sauces named for long time customers. He credits much of the success to his attentive staff, several who have been with since before he took over almost 30 years ago.

YC's Mongolian Grill
Beef & Broccoli bowl

What is YC’s Mongolian Grill?

Folklore has it that in the days of Genghis Khan, his army would cook their food on their shields over a hot fire, similar to how it’s done at YC’s. In each location after you’ve piled high your meats, vegetables, noodles and sauces the cooks will grill them on 600 degree circular flat top grill in full view. During peak times 4 cooks will toss the ingredients on the grill rotating around the grill.

There is no one demographic at YC’s Mongolian Grill as the food has something for everybody. Vegan and gluten free diets can be accommodated as there are plenty of vegetables, noodles and sauces for all.  Want meat in your bowl, add white or dark meat chicken, pork and or beef with shrimp available during dinner. Don’t be afraid to pile your ingredients high, it’s encouraged. Their signature noodles are sourced from Chinatown in L.A. with vegetables coming from local distributors.

A separate bowl is used combine ingredients for your Asian inspired sauce. A menu board offers several signature sauces recommending how much and which water based sauces and rice wines to use. The staff is always nearby to help create your sauce before grilling making tastes and combinations endless.

Free Stir Fry Day

To celebrate the new location, customers coming in Wednesday, November 2nd will get free small bowl from 11 a.m. – 7p.m. The new location is at 14850 N. 87th St., Scottsdale, AZ. For more information visit their website.

Sips & Bites: News from the Phoenix restaurant community

Quick sips & bites of news about what’s going on around the Phoenix restaurant community, breweries and wineries.

Miracle Mile Deli celebrates National Sandwich Month

Starting Monday August 1st the central Phoenix deli is serving up a weekly sandwich special for only $12. 8/1-8/6 – Corned Beef Sandwich 8/8-8/13 – Brisket Sandwich 8/15-8/20 – Combo (Pastrami & Corned Beef) 8/22-8/27 – The Straw. Each sandwich comes with a choice of sides and a dill pickle spear.

Phoenix City Grille offers exclusive Caymus Vineyards tasting event

Wednesday August 3rd join the vineyard’s Arizona Market Manager Stephanie Martindale for a tasting of five wines. Enjoy sipping on Emmolo Sparkling, Mer Soleil Reserve Chardonnay, Sea Sun Pinot Noir, The Walking Fool Red Blend and Bonanza Cabernet Sauvignon. Wines tasted during the event will be available for purchase with limited seating costing $25 ++ per person. Reservations can be made by contacting Britinee Reed at 602-510-7170 or privatedining@phoenixcitygrille.com

Hearth ’61 welcomes Chef Eugenia Theodosopoulos

The Chef and owner of Essence Bakery Cafe in Arcadia will be the guest chef at the restaurant’s Sunday Supper Club in August. The four-course dinner is set for August 14th at 6 p.m. and is paired with wine. Seats are $189++ per person and can be reserved here.

Sardinia’s food featured at Queen Creek Olive Mill’s dinner

The Italian region’s flavors and foods will be on prepared for August’s Tavalo dinner. Thursday August 18th from 6:30 -9:30 p.m. guests will dine on a 6-course’s with optional wine pairings. Much of the ingredients are locally sourced including from Golden Rule Dairy in Elfrida. Dinner is $124.99 per person and wine pairings are an additional $39.99. Reservations can be made here.

Caffe Vita opens tomorrow with FREE oat milk lattes.

The Seattle based coffee roaster opens its first Arizona location in the former Easley’s Fun Shop at 5th Ave. & McDowell Rd. Lattes will be available from 7 a.m. – 6p.m. Read more about the opening and more here.

Don’t forget to check out my podcast Pulling Corks & Forks: The Podcast with Sandy Wasserman to hear from those in our community. Please subscribe, like & comment.

Lisa Dahl opens second location of Pisa Lisa

Sedona’s Culinary Queen, Lisa Dahl has brought her popular restaurant and pizzeria Pisa Lisa to the Village of Oak Creek. This is Dahl’s sixth restaurant in the Sedona area and the first with a second location. The first Pisa Lisa opened in west Sedona in 2013 with the new location offering an expanded menu with favorites including wood-fired thin crust pizza, organic salads, tapas and locally made gelato.

Pisa Lisa gets its name from what Dahl’s father would affectionately say to her when giving her a pinch growing up, “I wanna little piece of Lisa”. “I put my heart and soul into the first Pisa Lisa location which is a testament to my dedication to serving people special experiences that will turn into cherished memories while honoring the adoration I feel for my family members who are no longer with us,” said Dahl.

A personal touch from Lisa Dahl on the menu

Guests will find many personal touches on the menu including naming dishes after family members. Da Dororthy pizza is named after her mother and made with Mother sauce, provolone-mozzarella, fennel sausage, picante peppers, Parm-Reggiano. The Justino pizza is dedicated to her late son and made with Ricotta, provolone-mozzarella, San Danielle prosciutto gold, organic arugula, and white-truffle oil.

New are the antipasto plates including Lisa’s Plate, an antipasti sampler with fresh bocconcini mozzarella, tomatoes, finnochio slaw, magic mushrooms, caselveltrano olives and fire-roasted artichokes. New from the pastry team for dessert is the Cookie Monster, a warm and molten giant chocolate chip cookie sundae with Strawberry-stracciatella plant-based gelato (vegan and gluten free).

Beverages include natural sodas, local mead, 16 taps for craft beers, and top selling wines. A wide-range of healthy grab-n-go items including paninis, prepped pizzas, morning treats, and locally sourced roasted coffee are available.

The restaurant has an industrial and bohemian look in its 3,500 square feet. The raised bar is surrounded by Rock n Roll memorabilia from Capitol Records from the 60s, 70s, and 80s. Indoor and outdoor seating is available as is communal seating at two large tables.

“This new location enables us to expand this heartfelt concept to a larger audience as it is ultimately a culmination of my work and passion for the Sedona culinary scene and my gratitude for those who dine at Pisa Lisa and stand with me in the belief that Rock ‘n’ Roll is here to stay!”

Pisa Lisa in the Village of Oak Creek is located at 6657 AZ-179 Ste D1, Sedona, AZ 86351. For more information visit their website.

Sfizio Modern Italian Kitchen brings a taste of Italy to north Phoenix.

Father and son Rocco and Marco Pezzano are no strangers to owning and operating Italian restaurants. In the summer of 2021 after a few years out of the business they were drawn back in and opened Sfizio Modern Italian Kitchen in the Desert Ridge neighborhood of North Phoenix. Sfizio is Italian for “you don’t need it, but you want it” or a “craving” and you’ll want this authentic Italian cooking.

Rocco was born in southern Italy’s Calabria region and moved to Torino at 16 working in his aunt’s bakery and pizzeria. In 1986 after visiting family in the United States he re-located to Arizona and opened “That’s Italian” and “Caffe Italy” in Phoenix and Scottsdale. Marco, an architecture student at ASU often worked in the restaurants growing up and learned to love it the way his father does. Like many in the industry Rocco got burnt out and started a wholesale company opting for a desk job.

Young Marco noticed his dad, although successful, wasn’t happy and had a “unspoken passion” for owning his own restaurant, inspired him to get back in the kitchen. That was 2019 and the idea for Sfizio Modern Italian Kitchen started to become a reality. Mom Zee and Marco’s sister round out the family and can be found at the restaurant when not working or in school.

The food at Sfizio Modern Italian Kitchen

All the food at Sfizio is scratch made with all the ingredients imported from throughout Italy. Fresh bread and pizza dough is made twice a day and pasta is made in house every day. Popular dishes include the seafood Frutti Di Mare with shellfish tossed in a spicy red sauce over squid ink pasta, plump Lobster Ravioli and Pollo Parmigina. Pizza Napoletana get tossed and baked in the brick oven in full view of the bar and dining room. Salads, small plates, entrees, antipasto boards and pizzas are served daily at dinner. The lunch menu includes pizza, sandwiches and a couple of pastas until 3 p.m. A full bar is available as is a mostly Italian wine list.

By the time you read this a new menu should be introduced including “The Original Sfizini” available during lunch.  Created by Rocco, hollowed out fresh bread is filled with classic Italian ingredients. Sausage & Peppers, Chicken Cacciatore and Eggplant Parmigiana are just a few of the fillings. Make sure you save room for classic Italian desserts of cannoli, tiramisu and more

Sfizio Modern Italian Kitchen is open daily Monday – Friday at 11 a.m. Dinner starts at 4 p.m. 7 days a week. Happy hour is available daily in the bar. Find them at 21050 N. Tatum Blvd. Phoenix 85050. Visit their website for more information and to view the menus.

Summer food and drink menus & specials at Phoenix area restaurants

Lighter fare and staying hydrated is one way to keep cool this summer as local restaurants offer summer food and drink menus & specials.

Gabriella’s Contemporary American CuisineAlmost every day of the week and weekly the Scottsdale restaurant has something to offer.

  • Happy Hour — Guests can enjoy special discounts on food and beverage Wednesday through Sunday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Burger and Beer Special — Get through the mid-week hump with a scrumptious burger and a beer for $19 every Wednesday
  • Bottle and a Board (Pizza) — Every Thursday diners can choose a bottle of wine to pair with one of Gabriella’s popular pizzas such as the Short Rib or Wild Mushroom for just $25
  • Fried Chicken Fridays — Every Friday except for the first Friday of each month, fried chicken lovers can get their fill of this classic comfort food for $25
  • Beef Wellington Night — This traditional hearty feast is served on the first Friday of the month, $50.
  • Senior Citizen Day — The first Thursday of each month is dedicated to the seniors! Senior citizens receive a 10 percent discount all day long.

Grimaldi’s PizzeriaHere are a few of the new dishes on their summer menu.

  • Barbecue Chicken Pizza – A spin on Grimaldi’s traditional pizza with Sweet Baby Ray’s® Barbeque Sauce, oven-roasted chicken, smoked bacon, and red onion, garnished with fresh cilantro​.
  • Blueberry Cheesecake – A vanilla cheesecake laced with blueberry swirl, topped with fresh blueberries, and garnished with granola and whipped cream.
  • Strawberry Cheesecake – Creamy strawberry cheesecake served with fresh, sliced strawberries and whipped cream.
  • Strawberry Lemonade Smash- New Amsterdam vodka, lemonade, muddled fresh strawberries, and fresh basil shaken and served over ice.

Match Market & Bar- Has a “Grill to Go” take-out special. A serving of 4 is $29.99, a serving for 8 is $49.99. Included is 7 oz. Angus Beef Patties, Brioche Buns, American Cheese, Muenster Cheese, LTO, Pickles, Match Beef Spice, Chef Sauce, Mayo, Bacon BBQ, Potato Salad, Fresh Assorted Melon. Pick-up is available daily after 10 a.m. through Sept. 5th. Visit their website or email or call 602-875-8080 to place your order.

Pita Jungle21 locations (not available at GCU and Scottsdale Fashion Square) are serving their “Summertime and the Eating is Healthy” for dine-in, take-out and delivery. It’s part of their rotating Seasonal Kitchen Crafts Menu.

  • Moroccan Gazpacho – Tomatoes, garbanzo beans, cucumber, onion, cilantro, celery, jalapeno, lemon juice, golden raisins, seasonings. Served cold with pine nuts and pita chip. Served vegan with cucumbers. (Gluten-free, vegetarian)
  • Labneh Dip Mezze Veggies & Chips– Labneh blended with za’atar-thyme mix, tomato, Persian cucumber, kalamata olives, fresh mint, evoo, toasted pita. Made gluten-free with gluten-free pita. 
  • Chicken-Asada Super Greens ‘n Grains Southwest Bowl– Juicy Mediterranean dark meat chicken-asada, tossed in a chopped salad of {red quinoa, avocado, tomato, roasted jalapeno, red onion, cilantro, parsley, sumac, a squeeze of lemon juice and evoo}, on a bed of {romaine lightly tossed in a freshly made red wine vinaigrette}. Garnished with jicama sticks. Made vegan or vegetarian with tofu. (Gluten-free)
  • Levantine Lentils & Greens Stir Fry Salad Bowl– Stir fry of lentils, spinach, Tuscan kale, baby arugula, and caramelized onions, atop a freshly tossed salad with seasonal mixed greens, tomato, Persian cucumber, yellow and red bells, radish, red onion, mint, sumac, a squeeze of fresh lemon, red wine vinegar and evoo. (Vegetarian)
  • “High Plains Mediterranean Drifter” Garbanzo Tostada– Twice-boiled garbanzo, yogurt-tahini crema, avocado, yellow bells, tomato, Persian cucumber, celery, red onion, jicama, roasted jalapeno, on a pita tostada, with pine nuts, cilantro, parsley, mint and a lemon squeeze. Made gluten-free with gluten-free pita. (Vegetarian)
  • Gyro Super Hero– Plant-based high protein gyro, vegan tzatziki, seasonal mixed greens, tomato, red onions, Mediterranean pickles and a Greek pita. Made gluten-free with gluten-free pita and vegan with regular pita. (Vegetarian)
  • Very Chicken Vindaloo– Mediterranean dark meat chicken-asada in a spicy vindaloo sauce, turmeric brown rice, honey glazed cabbage-kale super greens and green onions. (Gluten-free)
  • The Amazing [Hummus & Chicken] Pita– Mediterranean dark meat chicken-asada, freshly made hummus, chipotle-tahini based cabbage-kale super greens, avocado, tomato, Mediterranean pickles, red onions, pine nuts, lemon juice and pita. Can also be served as a bowl with turmeric brown rice. Made vegan and vegetarian with tofu, gluten-free with gluten-free pita. 
  • Kataïfi Cookie – A gooey cookie of shredded filo dough and crushed walnuts.

Macayo’s Mexican FoodThe 8 locations are are offering these summer food specials until Sept. 30th.

  • Summer Ceviche — Prepared daily with diced tomato, onion and serrano; served inside red chile corn tortilla shells and topped with diced avocado and seafood hot sauce, $9.99
  • Jicama Shrimp Tacos — Guests’ choice of grilled or fried shrimp topped with fresh fruit salsa on jicama shells, $13.99
  • Strawberry Chipotle Chicken Salad — Featuring crisp romaine, fresh fruit salsa and Jack cheese tossed in scratch-made strawberry vinaigrette dressing and then topped with chipotle grilled chicken, red chile corn tortilla strips and fresh strawberry, $12.99
  • Stuffed Poblano — Roasted poblano chile stuffed with choice of grilled chicken or calabacitas mixture with spinach and Jack cheese. Served on fire-roasted tomatillo sauce and Macayo’s famous Baja sauce with cilantro white rice and black beans, $14.99
  • Armando’s Shrimp — Guajillo-marinated grilled shrimp with cilantro white rice and black beans, $15.99
  • Pineapple & Coconut Tamale — Served with vanilla ice cream, fresh pineapple, Mexican caramel and toasted coconut $6.99
  • Bunuelos A La Moda — Cinnamon and sugar coated bunuelos served with vanilla ice cream and topped with choice of Re’al infused syrup such as guava, strawberry, blackberry, pineapple or mango, $4.99

Liberty Station TavernThe DC Ranch location offers these special through Sept. 5th.

  • Green Chili Hummus with roasted green chili peppers, cilantro and garlic; served with grilled ciabatta bread & veggies, V/RGF, $15
  • Black Bean Veggie Burger featuring black beans, fresh bell peppers, garlic and flax seed flower, V/RGF, $16
  • Baja Shrimp Tacos filled with tempura battered shrimp, slaw, red chili and avocado crema, $15
  • Shrimp Scampi featuring tiger shrimp, linguine, garlic, basil, bacon, crushed red pepper and tomato lemon butter sauce, $32
  • Baja Seabass served with green beans, Yukon smashed potatoes and creole beurre blanc, $34
  • Poppy’s Pasta Bolognese — A Keeler family tradition featuring PK’s favorite trinity meat blend, crushed tomato and shaved parmesan, $24

Chompie’sDaily and weekly specials for dine- in and to-go.

Dine-in

  • Weekday Special — Choice of buttermilk pancakes or French toast for $4.99; add two eggs any style and choice of bacon, ham and turkey sausage for an additional $3.99 or add fresh blueberries and strawberries for $2. Available until 11 a.m. Monday through Friday.
  • Happy Hour — At Chompie’s Phoenix location on 32nd St. and Cactus Rd., guests at the bar and throughout the restaurant can take advantage of the happy hour menu featuring $5 bottled beers and $6 glasses of wine from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. every day.
  • Jewish Slider Combo — Featuring two Jewish sliders, a cup of soup and a coleslaw nosh, this hearty and delicious special is available at all locations.
  • Mimosas and Bloody Marys — Cool down with a summer sip such as a mimosa or a Bloody Mary to start the day off right!

To-Go

  • Mondays and Fridays — On Mondays and Fridays beginning July 11 through Aug. 26, the Lox, Bagels and Cream Cheese special is just $19.99 and includes eight ounces of Nova Lox, six bagels (two plain, two sesame and two onion bagels) and eight ounces of plain cream cheese.
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays — Receive a Baker’s Dozen of bagels for just $8.88 until 11 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning July 12 through Aug. 25.
  • Wednesdays — All year long on “Bagel Wednesdays” bagel lovers can receive six free bagels with the purchase of 12 bagels.

Sips & Bites: News you can use from the Phoenix restaurant community

Quick sips & bites of news about what’s going on around the Phoenix restaurant community, breweries and wineries.

Picazzo’s Healthy Italian Kitchen offer Healthy Hour menu

All 6 locations (5 in Phoenix area and 1 in Sedona) kicked off the new summer Healthy Hour recently. Daily from 3 -6 p.m. enjoy popular food items and cocktails such as Baked Wings, Mama’s Meat-Za-Balls and Baked Brie for $8. Hot Artichoke Spinach Dip and Avocado Toast are $7 and Cheese Bread is $6.

Wash them down with $4 Local Drafts, glasses of house wines for $5 and Zo’s House Made Sangria for $6. Signature cocktails including the Prickly Pear Margarita and Smoky Cadillac are $7 and both use the locally owned Shrubwell‘s rimming salt.

 Dole Whip only $2 on Monday at Koibito Poke

Cool off on National Pineapple Day at the Gainey Ranch location of Koibito Poke with the the popular frozen treat. The 5 oz. Dole Whip is available all day from 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Chef Brett Vibber and Pedal Haus Brewery team up for beer paired dinner

Master Brewer Derek Osborne and Wild Arizona chef Brett Vibber team up for a five-course dinner on Thursday June 30th. Dinner will take place at the brewer’s downtown Phoenix location at 214 E. Roosevelt St. starting at 6 p.m. Foraged and locally sourced dishes including Wild Mushroom Potstickers and Arizona Wagyu Brisket will be paired with Mexican Amber Lager and Haus IPA. Seats are limited and are $120 and can be reserved here.

Venezia’s Pizza in Chandler now open

The 6th location of the poplar locally owned restaurant I featured last month is now open for business. Known for pizza and wings they offer daily lunch specials and the “Slice of the Day”. Owner Domenick Montanile opened his first location in Tempe in 1998 right after graduating from ASU.

Guy Fieri’s DTPHX Kitchen + Bar now open at Chase Field

When it was announced in February that Guy Fieri would we be opening a new restaurant at Chase Field little information was known. Now we know that “Guy Fieri’s DTPHX Kitchen +Bar” has opened this week inside the new Caesars Sportsbook. Executive Chef Kayla Laasko offers scratch made food along with classic cocktails, beer & wine. Several of Fieri’s classic dishes including Trash Can Nachos and the popular Bacon Mac n Cheeseburger are on the menu along with new dishes.

Don’t forget to check out my podcast Pulling Corks & Forks: The Podcast with Sandy Wasserman to hear from those in our community. Please subscribe, like & comment.

Burger and pairings from local chefs

Americans eat almost 50 billion hamburgers a year and there are just as many combinations of toppings for your burger. The debate on whether the hamburger was created in Hamburg Germany or in Texas still goes on. May is National Hamburger Month and May 28th is National Hamburger Day, here a few Arizona chefs offer up their restaurant’s favorite burger and pairings.

The Gringo Burger at Butterfly Burger– Sedona

Chef and Owner Lisa Dahl’s burger was the “People’s Choice” winner at the 2016 Scottsdale Burger Battle and she made it on the Food Network’s “Beat Bobby Flay”. She also featured it in her new cookbook and memoir “A Romance with Food” where a chapter, “Bodacious Burgers and Their Buddies” is dedicated to the hamburger.

Topped with Tillamook White Aged Cheddar, Louis Remoulade, Shredded Romaine & Crispy Onion Strings on Artisan Bun, Dahl likes to pair it with a Luscious Skinny Margarita. Feature photo credit: Scott Yates

W & W Burger at Weft & Warp– Scottsdale

Chef Dushyant Singh prepares this burger with Angus chuck/brisket blend, Hobbs Bacon, Organic Tomato Jam, Bibb Lettuce, Chive Gloucester Cheddar, Mustard Aioli. It comes with a side of Truffle Fries and his suggested pairing is See You Amaro – berry-infused amaro, bulleit rye whiskey orgeat, and egg white.

Burgers and pairings
Photo credit: Dushyant Singh

Triple B burger at Black Angus Steakhouse- Multiple locations

Chef Fernando Garcia resurrected this popular burger from years gone by for National Hamburger Month. This hand-formed, half-pound, Certified Angus Beef® ground chuck burger is stacked high with bacon, bleu cheese and balsamic red onions. He pairs it with a cold Bullseye Brew.

 

 

 

Sips & Bites: News you can use from the Phoenix restaurant community

Quick sips & bites of news about what’s going on around the Phoenix restaurant community, breweries and wineries.

New menus debut at Zuzu

The signature restaurant at Old Town Scottsdale’s Hotel Valley Ho recently debuted the new menu from Executive Chef Russel LaCasce. Hotel guests and locals can choose from a Steak & Potato Skillet, Strawberry Crème Brûlée French Toast, the Hot Hot Chicken Sammie and more on the everyday brunch menu.

The dinner menu now includes Grilled Portuguese Octopus, a Slow Braised Pork Shank, Pan-Seared Diver Scallops and more. Save room for the Blood Orange Panna Cotta, Double Dark Chocolate Cake and other desserts from new Pastry Chef Maria Arenas. Reserve your table by calling 480-421-7997.

3rd Tuesday Dinner next week at Romeo’s Euro Cafe

The popular cafe in downtown Gilbert still has seats left for its monthly dinner on Tuesday, April 19th. The three course dinner is paired with wines from around the world to complement each dish chosen by his staff. The dinner starts at 6:30 p.m. and reservations can be made by calling 480-962-4224.

Eat Up Drive In celebrates its 1st anniversary

Starting Monday, April 18th through Sunday, April 24th the Arcadia restaurant will be serving up iced teas, lemonades, including their new seasonal cucumber lime lemonade, French fries and their famous gluten-free chocolate chip cookies, all for just one dollar each.

After a 2 year hiatus Foodstock is back next weekend

Over 55 food trucks will be heading back to the Peoria Sports Complex for the return of Arizona’s favorite food truck festival. The family friendly event is next Saturday, April 23rd from 4-10 p.m. Admission is $5 with children under 12 getting in for free. The event is a collaboration between Get Local Arizona Events and Peoria Diamond Club with all the proceeds from the gate going to feed hungry children in the west valley.

Huss Brewpub ready to open at Phoenix Convention Center

It’s been a long 2 plus years that I wrote about the local brewery opening in downtown Phoenix and a longer four years of planning for co-owners Jeff and Leah Huss. It’s about to pay off next Wednesday, April 20th on Monroe St. between 2nd and 3rd St. on the Convention Center’s north facade.

As part of the celebration one lucky winner will win a “Season Table at the Brewpub”. The winner and 3 guests will enjoy a table for 24 games with the reservation guaranteeing them a table during busy times. The winner will be announced on Monday, April 18th on social media in time for the Phoenix Suns playoff rally.

Don’t forget to check out my podcast Pulling Corks & Forks: The Podcast with Sandy Wasserman to hear from those in our community. Please subscribe, like & comment.

Sips & Bites: News you can use from the Phoenix restaurant community

Quick sips & bites of news about what’s going on around the Phoenix restaurant community, breweries and wineries.

Mavrix has a new chef driven menu

The locally-owned family entertainment venue’s new menu has over 20 new dishes from Executive Chef Scott Nelson. Take a break from bowling and arcade games to try the Ribeye Bites & Bread, a Chipolte Lime Steak salad, a Green Chile Pork Chop, Fish Vera Cruz, Mav & Cheese and more throughout the menu.

Limited seating for the TLC eXperience’s Spring Fling Dinner

A private residence in Ahwatukee will be the setting for April’s monthly supper club from Tom & Lin Baumbach. Chef Tom’s menu will be revealed at the dinner on Saturday, April 23rd that starts with cocktail hour at 6:00 p.m. and dinner at 7. Seats are $175 per person and can be reserved here.

STK Steakhouse launches a new $3,$6,$9 happy hour menu

Treat yourself to new cocktails and something to eat at the steakhouse along the canal in downtown Scottsdale. Choose a craft cocktail such as the Dirty Pearls, Perfect Margarita and a Paloma Bucket while snacking on Short Ribs Croquettes, Green Goddess Salmon Sliders, Truffle Fries and more.

Pillsbury Gone Wild dinner features chefs from the Food Network

Wild Arizona chef Brett Vibber is joined by Chef Alicia Watson of Arkansas’ Vito & Vera for this month’s dinner. The two were recently featured on the Food Network’s “Big Restaurant Bet” and will be preparing at 6-course menu on Saturday, April 22nd at the wineries Cottonwood tasting room. Dinner starts at 6:00 p.m. and is $98 per person with wine pairings an additional $40 and you can reserve your seats by calling or texting Val at 949-466-1054.

The FRIED French Fry & Musical Festival is tomorrow

Saturday April 9th brings the return of one of most popular events in downtown Phoenix. Foodies from across the valley will make their way to Margaret T. Hance Park to taste everybody’s favorite side dish and its unique toppings. My post from January’s announcement has all the details and how to get your tickets.

Don’t forget to check out my podcast Pulling Corks & Forks: The Podcast with Sandy Wasserman to hear from those in our community. Please subscribe, like & comment.

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