Santé to open in north Scottsdale in mid- December

A new healthy food focused restaurant is opening on December 14th in the Kierland neighborhood of north Scottsdale. Santé, the brainchild of restaurateur Nic Neuman, owner of EVO and friend Nico Doniele, who has  hospitality experience and is a certified health coach. The new restaurant will serve dishes that incorporate flavors from around the world along with being healthy and favorable towards all diets.

The upscale restaurant has a grab n go section, will serve breakfast, happy hour and dinner with lunch starting in 2022. In addition to serving keto, vegan, vegetarian, paleo and gluten-free foods, Santé will be sustainable as much as possible including sourcing organic ingredients from ethical sources to composting.

“My motto is ‘let us live to eat and live longer to eat,’ and Santé embodies that,” said Doniele. “We wanted to create a beautiful, inclusive restaurant where people with all kinds of dietary restrictions can dine together and enjoy the community and connection we’ve been missing over the last nearly two years.”

Inspired by Nico’s travels and health journey the menu will include signature dishes including Buttermilk Brined Chicken and a Bison filet. A wine list of 50 offerings will be bio-dynamic from old world countries that will include orange wines and sparkling rose. For cocktails, a bar cart will travel the room making table-side cocktails during brunch & dinner. Customers on the go can grab healthy snacks, meals and supplements along with coffee and tea from the gourmet café. The restaurant will also offer community events including Sunday School, fun and educational seminars with wellness professionals.

Santé is at 15507 N. Scottsdale Rd. 85254. For more information visit their website.

“Arizona Pizza” added to new Fall menu at Famous 48 Local Kitchen & Bar

The Shops at Gainey Ranch’s Famous 48 Local Kitchen & Bar has announced several changes to its operation including adding Arizona Pizza to the menu. One of the new changes is that the restaurant will open at 10 a.m. on Saturdays and Sunday’s so football fans can catch all the action.

The 4 new Arizona Pizzas are 12 inch thin and crispy crusts and use a mozzarella and provolone cheese blend. A cauliflower crust is also available with the 4 pizzas being…..

·         Margherita. Grilled tomato, basil, extra virgin olive oil

·         The Famous 48. Pepperoni, sausage, onion

·         Nacho Mama. Ground beef, shredded lettuce, pico de gallo, taco sauce, blend of cheddar-jack cheese, crumbled Nacho Cheese Doritos®

·         BBQ Chicken Pizza. BBQ Sauce, provolone, chicken, red onion, cilantro

“We like to keep our menus fresh and we’ll always offer Arizona favorites.  That’s the inspiration for the four pizzas on this new menu at Famous 48,” said Robert Wagner, executive chef, of Famous 48 and sister restaurant, Cold Beers & Cheeseburgers. “We aim to please and we’re happy the neighborhood enjoys our great food.”

With the new pizza’s come a special happy hour deal every Monday -Friday from 3 – 6 p.m. Guests can enjoy a Arizona Pizza and bottle of red or white house wine for only $25. To end your meal, they’ve also added a new option to a favorite dessert. The skillet cookie option of white chocolate macadamia, caramel sauce with vanilla bean ice cream joins a classic chocolate chip cookie skillet with vanilla ice cream.

Famous 48 is at 8989 N Scottsdale Rd #608, Scottsdale, AZ 85253. 480-941-0101. Check out their website for the full menu and more.

Maynard J Keenan expands kitchen & hires chef at Scottsdale tasting bar

With the success and popularity of his Merkin Vineyards Osteria and Merkin Pizza Wagon in Cottonwood, owner & winemaker Maynard J Keenan gave the go head to expand his Merkin Vineyards Old Town Scottsdale tasting room. Keenan also hired Executive Chef Steve Zimmerman to take the helm of the new Morello Forni Cupola Dome wood-fired oven, imported from Italy and revamp the menu.

“Our dishes feature ingredients grown in our Northern Arizona greenhouses, gardens, and orchards, and we supplement with produce sourced from local Arizona growers,” said Maynard J Keenan. “Merkin Vineyards farm-to-table, vine-to-glass concept is the cornerstone of our success, and it’s a concept we intend to continue developing.”

The award-winning Zimmerman comes to Merkin Vineyards Old Town Scottsdale after a career in hotel restaurant management in his home state of Missouri and most recently at Tres Kitchen & Bar ion Tempe. “He’s the perfect culinary artist for our vision,” states Keenan.

The menu at Merkin Vineyards Old Town Scottsdale

The new menu includes ingredients from Merkins farm, citrus grove and orchard in the Verde Valley with additional ingredients sourced from local vendors and artisan producers. The new menu changes on a regular basis and includes many seasonal ingredients for its pizzas, pasta, salads and more. The Classic Margarita Pizza, the Calabrian with chorizo, schinken, bacon, calabrian chiles, fig jam and fontina cheese and the Crucifixen, features Merkin farm cruciferous veggies, roasted garlic, Parmesan spread, fresh mozzarella and fontina cheeses are part of the core menu.

Lasagna Cupcakes, gnocchi and Cacio e Pepe shows off Zimmerman’s creativity and attention to detail. Appetizers, charcuterie and few desserts round out the menu which can be paired with any of Merkin Vineyards Four 8 Wineworks and Caduceus wines along with their mead, cider and Puscifer sparkling wine. To see what I’ve tasted on several visits to Merkin Vineyards Old Town check out my Instagram feed.

Merkin Vineyards is located at 7133 E. Stetson Dr. Scottsdale 85251. Hours are Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. For more information and to see the menu check out  merkinoldtownscottsdale.com.

Phoenix Vegan Restaurant Week launches mid-September

Two of the valley’s vegan advocates have come together to launch the first Phoenix Vegan Restaurant Week September 12th- 18th. Chef & author Jason Wyrick and vegan taste maker and owner of Phoenix Vegan Jozh Watson launched the week long culinary event to bring more attention to plant- based restaurants, foods & cooking.

According to Wyrick, “Phoenix Vegan Restaurant Week is a celebration of plant-based cuisine in Phoenix. We want to raise awareness about everything vegan that’s now available in our city, get everyone excited, and out-and-about trying all of the great dining options.”

Phoenix Vegan Restaurant Week
Simon’s Hot Dogs. Feature photo Maya’s Cajun Cuisine’s Po’ Boy

How Phoenix Vegan Restaurant Week works?

The pair are encouraging restaurants, coffee shops, bakeries, food trucks and others to showcase their plant-based cooking and more. During the week participants will be offering a specially created menu with breakfast & lunch offering at $20 and a 3-course dinner menu at $30.

“We want to position Greater Metro Phoenix as a premier, inclusive dining destination,” said Watson.

During the week diners can experience the growing Phoenix plant-based food scene visiting new establishments or returning to familiar ones. A a few of the participating eateries include: Beaut Burger, Brunch & Sip, Chilte, Dilla Libre, Early Bird Vegan, Earth Plant-Based, Giving Tree Café, Ground Control, Hot Sauce & Pepper, Maya’s Cajun Kitchen, Pachamama, Positively Frosted, Salvadoreno Restaurant, Shameless Burger, Simon’s Hot Dogs, The Nile Coffee Shop, Urban Beans Café, Tesoro Vegano, The Vegan Taste, Verdura, and Wok this Way.

According to Wyrick, “Restaurants are experimenting more with vegan cuisine and showcasing some really great offerings. Phoenix Vegan Restaurant Week allows them to cater to a growing clientele and test the waters for expanding their vegan selections.” For more information and to see additional participants head to their website.

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.

Chino Bandido opens its new location

As featured in a March post, the locally owned Mexican, Asian & Jamaican fusion restaurant is now opened at its new Bell Rd. location. A larger kitchen and restaurant will be cranking out all the favorite dishes of the past 30 years.

Romeo’s Euro Cafe switches up calendar for Saturday dinner

The downtown Gilbert cafe has re-scheduled its weekly Thursday night dinner to tomorrow, Saturday July 10th. The 5-course dinner paired with wines will offer smaller versions off their everyday menu. Dinner starts at 6:30 p.m. and $39 plus tax and gratuity gets you a seat at the table. Call 480-962-4224 to make a reservation.

Pedal Haus Brewery helping to raise money for Show Low bike accident victims

The fundraiser takes place Saturday July 10th at the Tempe location at 6 a.m. for riders to get some much needed fuel (coffee & breakfast). The ride starts at 6:30 and the restaurant will open at 8:30 for the day. The local brewer is partnering with bicycle advocacy groups to raise money for victims of the June 19th accident when a truck drove into a group of 30 riders. 100% of the proceeds of Day Drinker Light Lager and 50% of the Bottomless Breakfast will be donated to the victims and their families. More information and to register can be found here. To make a donation click here.

Found:RE Hotel is Jamaican me crazy Saturday night

The 8th of its monthly Passport Series sets sail to the western Caribbean island. Match Market & Bar will become a tropical getaway from 6 -10 p.m. Saturday July 10th. Cuisine, cocktails and entertainment will be enjoyed for $15 including a cocktail. Collect stamps for your passport to win prizes and more. Register for the evening here.

Fired Pie celebrates 8 years with $8 specials on July 13th

All 21 locations are offering $8 Mac ‘N Cheese, Pizza and Salads for only $8 all day long. There is an up charge for cauliflower/gluten-free pizzas, limit one per customer and no 3rd party deliveries. For online ordering use promo code EIGHT.

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.

Downtown Tempe Brunch Stroll Saturday 6/19

Tomorrow from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. visit up to 14 local restaurants for specially made bites and drinks. Purchase a $5 pass and check-in at the kiosk then stroll at your own pace as you check out the Mill Ave. and downtown Tempe food scene.

Stick around for the first Park After Dark of the season at the 6th Street Park. Pedal Haus Brewery will be on-site with a beer & wine garden and take-out food is welcome. Live music, spoken word by Sean Avery and more theatrics kick off the season from 7-10 p.m. every Saturday until September 11th.

Spirit House celebrates 2 years with ice cream truck inspired cocktails

The downtown Chandler cocktail bar has created several cool & refreshing beverages reminiscent of the ice cream trucks of our youth. From June 22nd – 27th stop in and enjoy favorites such as the Bomb Pop, Snow Cone, Dream Bar and my favorite Strawberry shortcake to name just a few.

Enjoy rosé all summer at FRANCINE

Throughout the summer the south of France inspired restaurant offers guests the chance to cool off with a glass or bottle of the refreshing and food friendly pink wine. During weekend brunch (10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.) and happy hour (3 – 6 p.m.) enjoy a glass for $8 or a bottle for $30.

$1 smoothies all day at Tropical Smoothie Cafe

All valley locations are celebrating National Smoothie Day on Monday June 21st for only $1 to members of their loyalty club. Those who sign up for the program on the 21st will receive an extra $1 sign up offer. Add ins and supplements are extra and $1 smoothies only available on the 21st.

Phoenix restaurant community celebrates Father’s Day

This Sunday June 20th is Father’s Day and with so many restaurants offering dad specials I’m pretty sure his favorite restaurant will make sure he enjoys his day with discounts or a free meal.

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.

NYC experience coming to new Chompie’s Deli’s Phoenix location

When the new Chompie’s Deli opens this summer it will be like going home without leaving Phoenix. The new location at 32nd St & Cactus Rd. it will be only a mile away from the original location the Borenstein family opened at 32nd St & Shea Blvd. in 1979. For us East Coast transplants it will be like going home to visit NYC.

Enter the new 27,000 square foot restaurant through the bakery and market that will also be the hub for all baking, kosher cooking, and packaged goods. The NYC styled market will offer fresh baked bagels, breads, pastry and merchandise. A barista bar will be serving coffee drinks including cold brew, espresso and a variety of caffeinated beverages. The larger location allows Chompie’s to expand its gluten-free and keto friendly baked good for the menu and retail.

Chompie’s and its new investment partner JRI Hospitality have envisioned this type of NYC experience restaurant since it decided close its Paradise Valley Mall location (closing May 17th) last year as the mall goes into re-development.

“We all are extremely excited to bring Chompie’s back to its old stomping grounds and to be a part of the revitalization of the area,” says Mark Borenstein, co-founder and owner. “We’re so humbled by the support of our loyal customers and proud of everything the Chompie’s brand has come to represent for so many — a great meal anytime, a feast for the holidays, a dozen bagels to bring to the office, a beautiful cake for a celebration, or just a really good cup of coffee or a Bloody Mary to enjoy while catching up with a longtime friend. We intend to be part of our customers’ best memories for years to come.”

NYC state of mind

Entering the restaurant guests will recognize the glitz, a mural of the NYC skyline and memorabilia including the iconic Times Square ball from New Year’s Eve. The patio will remind you of Central Park with greenery, trees and lights among the various seating including a community tables and lounge seating.

“It’s an honor for us to partner with the Borenstein family to help Chompie’s grow and develop well into the future,” says Jason Ingermanson, CEO and president of JRI. “This partnership allows the family to remain an integral part of the restaurants’ day-to-day operations while we explore opportunities to further expand the brand that they’ve worked so hard to build to what is it today.”

When the new restaurant opens it will be filled with grand opening events and fundraisers. The new restaurant will be at 3212 E. Cactus Rd. Phoenix and more information is at their website.

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.

Marcellino Ristorante hosting Learn & Lunch cooking classes

Home chefs looking to hone their skills at cooking authentic Italian food can reserve their seats at the downtown Scottsdale restaurant. Chef Marcellino offers his next monthly cooking class on Saturday, April 17th. The 2 hour class will teach you to prepare his signature ravioli with spinach and ricotta cheese. Seats are limited and are $50++ and include lunch. May 15th is the next class making Pollo Saparito and on June 19th its Pasta Ghiotonna. Classes are from 1 – 3 p.m. and reservations can be made by calling the restaurant at 480-990-9500.

Pulled Pork Eggs Benedict at Morning Squeeze for a limited time

Egg Benedict fans can celebrate National Eggs Benedict Day next Friday April 16th at any 3 of the restaurant locations. A specially made Pulled Pork Benedict will be available for only 3 days next weekend. Always on the menu is the Classic Benedict, Cali Benedict & Salmon Benedict.

Doggie Date Night at Daily Dose Midtown

Grab your favorite canine and head to the restaurant at Highland & 20th St on the 3rd Thursday of the month. Next Thursday the 15th from 3 – 9 p.m. well behaved dogs and their owners are invited to the patio for all natural dog treats from Dogs Eating Cake and special menu for their owners. A portion of the proceeds from the night will be donated to the Arizona Humane Society. Reservations are needed and can be made by calling 602-274-0334. Circle these dates for the next Doggie Date Night…..May 20th & June 17th.

Community Blend coffee benefits local schools districts

Press Coffee Roasters announced that the proceeds from its Community Blend coffee beans will be donated 6 K-8 school districts in neighborhoods where there is a Press location. In-store purchases only and Community Blend is available until May 16th.

Brazil is on the map for Match Market & Bar’s Passport Series

No need to pack your bags just head to the downtown Phoenix restaurant tomorrow night (Saturday April 10th) for some South American flavor and culture. The trip is from 6 – 10 p.m. and is $15 per person with exotic cocktail included. For more information head to their website.

 

Buck & Rider announces a new North Scottsdale location

Arcadia’s popular Buck & Rider known for fresh seafood flown in daily has announced that they will be opening a second location at The Shops at Chauncey Ranch in North Scottsdale. Seafood fans will still have to head to the Camelback Rd. restaurant as the new location is about a year away from opening.

LGO Hospitality opened the original location in 2015 and has built its reputation serving quality seafood and meats by working directly with the fishermen and farmers. All fish is cut in-house with oysters and fish selections are rotated on a daily basis. Seafood comes from all directions with the seasonality, weather and skill of the fisherman dictating what’s available on the menu.

“Opening an authentic Buck & Rider location in Scottsdale gives us the ability to share our vitality, vim and vigor with the local community. Our goal has always been to bring the freshest seafood possible to Phoenix,” said Emily Collins of LGO Hospitality. “We’re eager and enthusiastic about sharing our unique and genuine vision with even more Arizonans. We utilize the freshest and most immaculate ingredients and apply exactness in cooking so that interference with the natural elements of the food is minimal and truly celebrate the ingredients.”

Serving lunch, dinner, brunch and happy hour Buck & Rider guests to Scottsdale will recognize familiar dishes such as Steak Tartar, Hand Rolled Sushi, Baja Shrimp Ceviche and the famed Abby’s Oyster Bar. A signature cocktail list with premium liquors and wine will compliment your meal. A full patio with outside bar is included in the design by local architect Cathy Hayes with her inspiration and design of the new location being influenced by modern designs and natural decor of the area. For more information and updates as to the opening visit the Buck & Rider website or on Facebook.

Dining out or take-out for Valentine’s around Phoenix

February 14th to some Valentine’s Day to others is coming up fast and those looking to celebrate with Cupid its time to make a plan for you and your significant other. Valentine’s Day falls on a Sunday this year and some local restaurants and wine bars are celebrating all weekend long. These establishments are serving up dinner for 2 whether you’re dining out and for take-out.

Match Market & BarDowntown Phoenix- Fri., Sat. & Sun. Pizza, house salad & a bottle of wine for $35. 2 entrees, house salad, dessert & a bottle of wine for $55. Dine- in & take-out.

Keeler’s Neighborhood Steakhouse– Carefree- Specially prepared passionate starters, entrees and dessert on Sunday starting at 4 p.m. Dine-in.

Hotel Valley Ho Old Town Scottsdale- 3 – course dinner on Sunday $55 – $75++ per person depending on entrees selected. Reservations required.

Hearth ’61– Paradise Valley- Saturday & Sunday a 3 – course seasonal prix fixe dinner $89 per person. Reservations required.

Rusconi’s American Kitchen– Phoenix- Fri. & Sat. 3 course Sweetheart Menu for dine-in menu is $62++per person. Sunday a special menu for dine-in at $82 ++per person. Special to-go menu available for $82++ per person.

Cowboy Club– Sedona- Slow Smoked Prime Rib & Cold Water Lobster Tail on Sunday for dine-in. $40 for 10 oz. prime rib, $49 for 14 oz. prime rib.

Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse– Multiple locations- Fri., Sat, Sun, and Mon. 3 – course Prime Surf & Turf for 2. $240++ for 2 people. Dine-in & take-out.

Phoenix City Grille– Phoenix- Several special dishes available for lunch & dinner on Sunday.

Elements at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain– Paradise Valley- 4-course prix fixe menu on Sat. & Sun. for $149++ per person. Reservations required.

JW Marriott Camelback Inn Resort & Spa– Paradise Valley – Special dinner on Sat. & Sun. at Rita’s Cantina and Bar. Complimentary champagne tasting on Valentine’s Day.

L’ Auberge de Sedona- Sedona- Hotel guests can enjoy a multi-course dinner from Executive Chef Frank Desplechin on Sunday. $165++ per person, $220 with wine pairings. Reservations required.

Tracey Dempsey Originals– Tempe- A romantic dinner for 2 or prepare a dinner together with ingredients and recipes provided for $90. Pre-order by 11a.m. on Thursday February 11th for pick-up on Saturday from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Wine available by request.

Vicinos Local Italian- Scottsdale- Saturday and Sunday enjoy a 3 course prix fixe menu for $79.95++ for 2. Reservations highly recommended when dining out.

Los Sombreros– Scottsdale & Mesa- Enjoy a starter, 2 house specialties and dessert for $50++ on Sunday. Dine-in or take-out with reservations highly suggested for dining out.

STK Scottsdale– Scottsdale- Several opportunities to dine for brunch, dinner and date night leading up to Valentine’s Day weekend. Dining out or take-out available.

Serrano’s Mexican Restaurants- Multiple locations- The downtown Chandler location has a special Comedy Dinner with Cory McCloskey. Seating’s at 5 & 7 p.m. on Saturday the 13th with with a 3-course dinner for 2 for $125++. Reservations required.

A Sizzling Dinner for Two is available at all locations on Saturday the 13th. A three course dinner is available for dine-in and to- go for $45++ per couple.

Kasai Japanese Steakhouse– Scottsdale- Chateaubriand for 2 for $65 on the 14th. Add 2 lobster tails for $40 and a bottle of Cristal for $200. Not available tepanyaki tables.

Miracle Mile Deli– Phoenix- Kids eat free with with adult entree purchase on Saturday the 13th.

Jalapeno Inferno– Multiple locations- A “South of the Border” 3 course dinner for 2 for $48. For dine-in or take-out.

Gabriella’s Contemporary American Cuisine– Scottsdale- 4-course prix fixe dinner with Stuffed Dover Sole or Surf & Turf as your entree for $85 per person.

R + W Modern Bistro and Wine Market– Scottsdale- Enjoy a 3- course dinner with a reception to start at 5:30, dinner at 6 p.m. Limited seats are available for $85 per person++ and reservations can be made by calling 480-478-6999.

Nonna Urban Eatery– Scottsdale- An exclusive dine-in 3- course dinner for $48++. Reservations can be made by calling 480-663-3296.

Urban Margarita– Glendale- Fri., Sat., & Sun enjoy a 3-course dinner for $29++.

Trapp Haus BBQ– Downtown Phoenix- Date night dinner for 2 on SundaySpring Salad, Short Rib Pot Pie or Seafood Pot Pie  and Bourbon-Glazed Chocolate Coconut Bread Pudding for $46.99 for 2. For dining out or take- out on Sunday. Call 602-466-5642 to order.

Peacock Wine Bar– Gilbert- Enjoy a bottle of red, white or sparkling wine, charcuterie board for 2 and 6 chocolate dipped strawberries for $60. Available ion the 14th for dine-in or take-out.

ComicX– Desert Ridge Market Place- Valentine’s Day Couple Dinner: 2 entrees (reg menu), choice soup or salad, Churro Bowl with Chocolate hearts. It includes 2 bar drinks all for $65.

The Boulders Resort & Spa– Carefree- A 3-course dinner is being served at The Grill Kitchen & Bar on Valentine’s Day. $78++ per person. For reservations call 480-595-4621.

Thirsty Lion Gastropub– Desert Ridge Marketplace and Tempe Marketplace- A 3-course Dinner for two with a bottle of Sonoma Cutrer Chardonnay for $99 on Fri., Sat. and Sun. Reservations suggested.

Restaurants & shops are offering single item Valentine’s Day specials.

Soda JerkHigh Street

Crumbl Cookies– Multiple locations

Tikka Shack– Desert Ridge Marketplace

Sizzle Korean BBQ– Desert Ridge Marketplace

Genghi’s Grill, Mojo Yogurt, Portillo’s, Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory-Tempe Marketplace- Tempe