Sour & Sweet Beer Fest coming to Scottsdale in August

Fate Brewing Company host’s the first annual Sour & Sweet Beer Fest Saturday August 13th at The Clayton House in Old Town Scottsdale. Fate’s director of Operations Steve Ellefson and Head Brewmaster Adam came up the idea for the new beer festival only a few months ago as they noticed the popularity of sour beers and no other festivals taking place during the summer. Sour beers are one way brewers can get creative using a “melting pot” of ingredients for unique flavor profiles.

“A crisp lager or sour hits differently on a hot Arizona summer day,” said Fate Head Brewer Adam Schmeichel. “So, we thought, ‘Why not bring together the best light and sour beers our brewing community has to offer into one festival?’ Thus, the Sour & Sweet Beer Fest was born. Best of all, we’ll be indoors.” Fate will be pouring their Blueberry Lemonade sour which uses lemons from Tempe’s Silent Orchard.

What to expect at Sour & Sweet Beer Fest

13 Arizona breweries will be pouring over 50 light & sour beers and ciders at the event that begins at 1 p.m. Familiar names such as Grand Canyon Brewing, Goldwater Brewing and Cider Corps are a few breweries that will be in attendance. Popular food trucks Dilla Libre, French Me and Eis Cafe will have food for purchase during the festival. A collaborative dessert from Fate and Eis will feature the Blueberry Lemonade sour and Birthday Cake ice cream for the festival.

Tickets for the Sour & Sweet Beer Fest are $45 for general admission which gets you 15 tasting tickets and a commemorative glass. VIP tickets are $65 and get you early entry at 12 p.m. and a commemorative t-shirt. Designated driver tickets are $10 and the event is rain or shine with no refunds. Tickets can be purchased online or at Fate’s Tempe or Scottsdale locations where you can save the processing fee. The event is for 21 & over and The Clayton House is at 3719 N.75 St. Scottsdale 85251. Free parking is located at the event or in the nearby Civic Center Library garage.

Bell Bank Park is the new home of the Arizona Taco Festival

When the 13th annual Arizona Taco Festival returns on November 12th and 13th it will have a new home in the East Valley. Mesa’s Bell Bank Park will welcome the popular event along with special guest and celebrity host Aaron May and his Band of Celeb-U-Friends. May is known for his appearances on the Food Network’s “Guy’s Grocery Games” and the NFL’s annual Official Tailgate event before the “big game”.

This year’s Taco Festival will include popular events including Lucha Libre Wrestling, a Hot Chile Pepper & Taco Eating Contest, mariachis and more. New this year will be a Taco Queen Drag Contest, Hot Sauce Expo and Day of the Dead Wedding. The Tequila Expo is now the “Tequila Passport” and attendees can sample over 100 top shelf tequilas all day. “I’m going to make this year’s taco fest into a full Taco-Palooza of epic proportions. I might even get in the wrestling ring with the Luchas!” says May.

Let’s not forget that over 50 local taco vendors and restaurants will be on hand serving up tacos and more while trying to be crowned the “Top Taco” to win $$$ and more.

Doors open at 11 a.m. and goes until 6 p.m. This is a family friendly event with Early Bird tickets available online for $15 and kids under 12 get in for free. Bell Bank Park is at 1 Legacy Dr. Mesa 85212.

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.

Winery to host Wine Country BBQ in August

Not a whole lot happens in Arizona during the summer but something you can count on is the Wine Country BBQ hosted by LDV Winery in Pearce. On Saturday August 6th, in the foothills of the Chiricahua Mountains of southeastern Arizona winery owners Peggy Fiadaca and Kurt Dunham host wine club members and guests for their annual celebration of the harvest in progress.

The fun starts at 11:30 a.m. with lunch between 11:30 a.m. and 2 p..m. followed by tours until 4 p.m. Lunch will of course be paired with award-winning wines and the educational tour will visit the winery and vineyards. Taking pictures is encouraged as the property has picturesque views and lots of natural beauty.

Those looking to spend the night are encouraged to speak with Peggy about nearby lodging. Those with RVs or looking to camp (bring your own tent,etc) are invited to spend the night “amongst the vines”. Cost is $40 per person and $30 for wine club members. Lunch, a glass of wine and a tour are all included. You can register to attend here or call or email Peggy at 480-664-4822.

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.

Over Easy and Hickman Family Farms raising money for United Food bank in April

Starting today and all month long, the 11 locations are matching customer donations dollar for dollar and the farm will donate a dozen eggs for each donation. The two local businesses have a goal of donating $20,000 and 10,000 dozen eggs. Customers will see a prompt when paying their bill asking if they want to make a donation to United Food Bank.

March Madness at Koibito Poke this weekend

College basketball fan or not score $4 off your order when ordering online or on their app. Use promo code FINAL4 this Saturday and Sunday for this Final Four deal.

Rusty’s Beer Fest is this Sunday

Enjoy cold beers on the patio overlooking The Short Course and Camelback Mountain at Mountain Shadows Resort’s bar & grill. All the details and how to get tickets are here.

Raise a glass of rosé at Match Market & Bar

The downtown Phoenix restaurant in the Found:RE Hotel hosts its Monthly Guide to Wine featuring the perfect wine for Spring and Summer. Join the fun tasting and discussion about rosé Wednesday, April 6th from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. Admission is $25 and includes light fare with tickets available here.

Leila’s Empanadas celebrates National Empanada day with 2 events

Next Friday, April 8th the locally owned artisan maker of the Latin American hand held food celebrates from 4-6 p.m. at Sam’s Frozen Yogurt located at 3434 W Anthem Way, Suite 140, Anthem, AZ 85086. On Saturday Leila will be serving them up from 10 AM – Noon at Lil Miss Butcher 4705 E Carefree Hwy. Cave Creek, AZ 85331.

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.

Project Roots AZ “Taste of the Garden” to feature locally grown food

Local non-profit Project Roots AZ hosts its inaugural fundraiser, “Taste of the Garden” on Saturday, April 30th at 6 p.m. The Spaces of Opportunity garden at 1200 W. Vineyard Rd in Phoenix will host well respected Phoenix area chef members of Local First Arizona who will prepare foods grown and harvested by Project Roots AZ volunteers.

“Creating dishes for people that come directly from the community gardens at Spaces of Opportunities is a perfect way for stakeholders to see a value in what we are doing first-hand,” said Bridget Pettis, Project Roots AZ co-founder and former WNBA Phoenix Mercury player and Chicago Sky coach.

Pettis started the non-profit in 2019 to provide access to nutritious foods and promote a healthier way of living in urban neighborhoods. She uses her gardening knowledge to help educate the undeserved in Arizona with community gardens and mobile kitchens. Volunteers grow fruits and vegetables in two community gardens then have them donated to local food banks, sold at farmer’s markets and sold through produce box deliveries. These proceeds then get reinvested in the non-profit to help feed more people.

“Most people in the Valley don’t have the luxury of experiencing food that comes directly from garden to table, that’s something we are excited to share during this fundraiser,” Pettis added. “The chefs we are working with are amazingly creative. The dishes they’ve crafted showcase the fruits of our labor perfectly.”

Monies raised from the “Taste of the Garden” event will help support programs including gardening classes for kids & adults and cooking demonstrations that help educate the community on how to cook and prepare their own food. Tickets are $100 each and can be reserved here.

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.

The Ostrich brings in new talent for new craft cocktails

The downtown Chandler speakeasy starts a new era in announcing 5 new hires. They welcomed Craft Operations Manager Tyler Zhorne, Craft Bar Manager Jared Ammon, lead bartender Samantha Dengler, bartender Adam Slaton and server Tyler Yenkala to the team. With the new hires comes a new reverse happy hour to accommodate hospitality employees and collaborations with other local bars and restaurants for events & specials.

Society by EVO opens for dinner tonight in Tempe

Announced in January, Society by EVO opens tonight night at 4p.m. according to co-founder Nick Neuman’s Facebook page. The hip & high energy restaurant in Tempe will serve top notch cocktails and food until 1:30 a.m. every night. The menu will feature popular dishes from Neuman’s Scottsdale restaurant EVO along with new Mediterranean influenced dishes. A grand opening is scheduled for next Friday, March 25th.

Mother Road Brewing & Rombauer Vineyards battle it out at Zuzu

It’s beer vs. wine at the Hotel Valley Ho’s Versus Series Dinner next Thursday, March 24th. Seats are still available for when the Flagstaff brewer meets the popular Napa Valley winery paired with Chef Russell LaCasce’s has special four course menu. Seats are $159 ++ per person and you can make a reservation by calling 480-421-7997

Mesquite Fresh Street Mex opens new location in Gilbert

The newest location opens Saturday March 19th is the first that is walk-up and drive-thru only for the locally owned fast casual concept. During the grand opening a “Golden Ticket” promotion will give free burritos for a year to several winners. The new location is at 4875 S. Val Vista Dr.

The James Beard Foundation narrows down list of Award finalist.

The list of 15 Arizona nominees was whittled down to 4 finalists for the June 13th awards ceremony.

Outstanding Restaurateur– Chris Bianco, Tratto, Pane Bianco, and Pizzeria Bianco, Phoenix

Best New Restaurant- Bacanora, Phoenix

Outstanding Baker- Don Guerra, Barrio Bread, Tucson, AZ

Best Chef: Southwest- Giovanni Scorzo, Andreoli Italian Grocer, Scottsdale, AZ

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.

Camelback Inn to host a Winemaker Weekend with Paul Hobbs

The legendary JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa is welcoming winemaker & winery owner Paul Hobbs for a fun filled weekend next month. Taking place in the resort’s Lincoln Steakhouse on Friday and Saturday April 22nd & 23rd guests will have three opportunities to meet the winemaker and taste his wines. Enjoy 1, 2 or all 3 of the events at this 21 and older weekend.

-A welcome reception takes place at 5:30 p.m. Friday night with wine poured from Crossbarn, his Central Coast wines and from Hillick & Hobbs in New York’s Finger Lakes region. Hors d’ oeuvres and paired cheeses will be served for the two hour reception. Seats are $125.53 per person with a 2 person minimum can be reserved here.

-Looking to learn more about his wines, join Hobbs for a wine seminar in the Lincoln’s private dining room. The tasting and seminar will focus on his old world and new world wine along with ancient wines from Armenia. Seats are available at available at 3:45 & 4:00 p.m. for a $100. 17 per person with a 2 with a 2 person minimum and are available here.

-End the weekend with dinner on the restaurant’s patio enjoying the sunset and the best wines from his portfolio. Limited seating is available for the multi-course dinner that includes breathtaking views of Camelback Mountain. The dinner starts at 6:00 p.m. and is $188.93 all inclusive per person with a 2 person minimum and can be reserved here. The JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa is at 5402 E. Lincoln Dr. Paradise Valley 85253.

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.

Beard Papa’s opens new location in Gilbert tomorrow

The Japanese build your own cream puff bakery with a cult like following is opening its newest location at SanTan Village Mall, Saturday February 26th. The Gilbert location is the 2nd in Arizona having opened in Scottsdale last year. The first 100 guests when they open at 10 a.m. will receive a surprise gift and BP will be collecting donations for Phoenix Children’s Hospital throughout the day.

Corazon Tequila Dinner at Spotted Donkey Cantina

Seats are available for authentic Mexican cuisine paired with the world class tequila for 4-courses on Friday, March 11th. Fresh ingredients will be used for dishes including Octopus Ceviche, Wagyu Beef Short Rib Mole and more. Seats are $98 per person and can be reserved by calling 480-488-3358 or online here.

Food Truck Friday West hosts more than 10-20 food trucks

Tonight and every Friday from 5 – 9p.m. foodies can try new & favorite foods from the valley’s food truck community. Momma’s Organic Market hosts the weekly event at Desert Financial Credit Union 17445 N. 79th Ave. in Glendale.

Grand Canyon Brewing + Distillery open Page brewpub

Almost a year ago the Williams based brewery & distillery announced their 3rd location in the state would be on the banks of Lake Powell. It’s now open with a full menu of craft beers, spirited cocktails and scratch made food. Over 20 TVs and an indoor & outdoor seating are features that will also attract visitors to Horseshoe Bend location that used to be a firehouse.

Cajun festival tomorrow in Chandler

The great weather here in Arizona brings out spicy Cajun cooking, live music and more as Mardi Gras approaches. Tomorrow’s festival in downtown Chandler starts at 2 p.m. For more information and how to get tickets see my featured post.

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.

 

Forty8 Live! and Angry Crab Shack team up for Cajun festival

Event producer Forty8 Live! and Angry Crab Shack will be bringing the Angry Crab Shack Southwest Cajun Festival to downtown Chandler come Saturday February 26th. The family friendly Mardi-Gras style bash will turn Dr. A.J. Chandler Park into Bourbon Street with French Quarter back drops, magicians, a Mardi Gras float and of course food.

“Whether it’s the smell of the seafood boil, the sounds of our brass bands, the thrill of our live gators or the thousands of beads being thrown, we want you to feel like you are transported right inside NOLA!” said David Horen, Director – Events at Forty8 Live!

Starting at 2 p.m. Cajun food lovers can expect giant seafood boils from Angry Crab Shack, frog legs, beignets, King Cake, Po’ Boys, hush puppies, alligator & catfish bites and more. The Swamp, a drink tent will offer Hurricanes, frozen daiquiris and other Mardi Gras inspired cocktails. A live alligator petting zoo, marching bands, a kid’s zone, jugglers and stilt walkers will entertain the crowds. The “Prince of Zydeco” headliner C.J. Chenier and the Red Hot Louisiana Band will play live and costumes are encouraged.

“With thousands upon thousands of true Cajun Fest fanatics, we are so excited to once again be delivering our first-in-class Mardi Gras themed event to the heart of the East Valley!” said Mike O’Donnell, Director – Partnerships at Forty8 Live!

Tickets are $12 online, $20 at the door and kids 12 & under are free with food and beverages purchased separately. Part of the proceeds is going to the Greater Cause Foundation that provides funding to several Arizona causes. Tickets can be purchased and more information can be purchased online at Forty8 Live!’s website.

The Metro Phoenix Night Market to showcase over 12 Asian food vendors

As live events continue returning fans of Asian food will want to circle Saturday, January 29th on the calendar. That’s when the Metro Phoenix Night Market returns showcasing a variety of food and culture from China, Korea and other Far East and southeast Asian countries. The Press Room in Tempe will host the event that starts at 4 p.m. for early admission ticket holders.

Vendors will offer at least one menu item for $5 or less with beer and cocktails also available for purchase. A curated market with local artists will be showcasing their work at the outdoor event. All vendors will accept cash or credit but cash is suggested and parking is free.

Early admission tickets are $14.99 to get in at 4 p.m., General Admission starts at 5:30 p.m. and tickets are $10. Happy Hour starts at 8 p.m. and tickets are $6.00 and children aged 7-12 are $4.00. Children under 7 are free. Tickets prices don’t include sales tax or a booking fee.  You can purchase tickets to the Metro Phoenix Night Market here and get more information and stay updated at their Facebook page. The Press Room is at 3125 S.52nd St. Tempe 85292.

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