Central Kitchen virtual food hall opens in Chandler with 4 concepts

Virtual kitchens/food halls continue to gain popularity with the local restaurant industry. Concept Entertainment Group (CEG), owners of Thirsty Lion Gastropub have opened Central Kitchen, a virtual food hall from the kitchen of Chandler’s Thirsty Lion. Arizona is the 4th state to open Central Kitchen which was launched late last year in Oregon then Texas and Colorado. Guests can order from five concepts Soy Joy Kitchen, Southern Jewel, Killer Wings, Pizza & Spice and Thirsty Lion.

“We’ve been fostering the idea of a kitchen focused on takeout and delivery for the last year,” said John Plew, president and CEO of Thirsty Lion Gastropub. “The pandemic put the process into hyper speed, and we saw this as the perfect opportunity to pivot with the climate and launch an idea that aligns with current consumer demands. Central Kitchen fills a need in the restaurant space by providing multiple culinary offerings from one hub. Guests can order the food that everyone in their home is craving under one ticket.”

All menus include scratch made dishes created by Keith Castro, CEG’s VP of Food and Beverage Executive Chef. Guests can order take-out and delivery from one central website with ease and efficiency.

Soy Joy Kitchen specializes in rice bowls, sushi, ramen and other Asian favorites. Southern Jewel offers Southern fried chicken, Nashville hot chicken, sliders and Southern specialties. Killer Wings serves boneless and traditional wings with a variety of house made sauces. Pizza and Spice has a large selection of gourmet specialty pizzas and salads. Don’t forget burgers, salads, sandwiches and more from the Thirsty Lion and vegetarian options are available from most concepts. Starting January 26th Central Kitchen will offer 25% off each to-go meal ordered at the central 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.

Toys for Tacos at Mr. Mesquite Taqueria

All 7 locations are collecting toys in exchange for tacos until December 31st. Bring in a toy, clothes or learning tool for The Academic Opportunity of Arizona and get a free taco for the day of drop off.

Monday night is Date Night at Tommy V’s Urban Kitchen

The downtown Scottsdale restaurant invites couples to join them on Monday’s for dinner for $50. Starting at 4 p.m. each twosome will get 2 pasta entrees, 2 salads and a pre-selected bottle of wine. Reservations required and must mention Date Night Special for special price. 480-427-2264.

Holiday tamales available from Los Sombreros

Order by the dozen for pick-up by December 24th. Mix & match Green Corn, Pineapple, Tomatillo Chicken, Rajas, Carnitas & Red Beef Chile. All tamales are using produce from local farms. Order at their website.

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria now available from ghost kitchen

Pizza to go is now available at Kitchen United MIX in Scottsdale. Order on-line and have the same delicious pizza and more made fresh and ready for pick-up or delivery.

Merkin Vineyards launches monthly Sunday brunch

This Sunday December 6th in Scottsdale will be the first brunch offered at the wine bar. The first Sunday of every month several dishes will be offered that use ingredients grown at its vineyards, gardens and orchards in the Verde Valley. Wines and Mimosas will be available to compliment your food.

Jerry’s Restaurant re-opens serving comfort food in Mesa, kind of.

Jerry’s Restaurant was a comfort food staple in Phoenix dating back to the 1960’s when it closed a few years back. With the popularity of comfort food in 2020 Jerry’s is re-opening this month in Mesa but with a catch. It will be a delivery only restaurant with food prepared in another restaurant. Last month I reported on Carnitas Way, the cloud kitchen from the owners of Los Sombreros and now Jerry’s Restaurant, where they will be preparing food out of the new Mesa location.

“We like to refer to it as Jerry’s 2.0,” says Kurt Riske, head of Rooted Concepts. “I’ve been around Jerry’s Restaurant for years. My dad worked at the Phoenix Jerry’s since 1991, so I have gotten to know many of Jerry’s loyal customers and it’s incredible to see the following Jerry’s has here in the Valley. For the moment, we are opening Jerry’s as a delivery only concept, which suits today’s times, since a large percentage of restaurant customers are ordering out and dining at home.”

Jerry's Restaurant
Chicken Fried Steak

Much of the menu will stay the same as the original restaurant that was located on E. Thomas Rd. in Phoenix. Burgers, meatloaf, pot roast, chicken fried steak and breakfast menu along with the popular burritos will be available for delivery.

“This is an unusual year, and we’ve gotten comfortable thinking outside the box,” says Riske. “We’ve been intrigued with the rising trend of cloud kitchens, and this year seemed right for testing it out. We’re using our Mesa Los Sombreros as the home base for delivery of Los Sombreros, our new burrito concept Carnitas Way that launched last month, and now Jerry’s as well.”

Delivery will be available from Grubhub and DoorDash. There is also a Jerry’s Restaurant in Safford AZ and Fallon NV. To view the menu and order visit their website.

Carnitas Way delivers California beach style healthy Mexican food

A new concept has a emerged in the restaurant industry as ghost kitchens a.k.a cloud or virtual kitchens have become popular. Theses kitchens don’t have traditional store front locations and don’t offer dine-in service with delivery the only option. Carnitas Way launched last week from Kurt and Colleen Riske, owners of Los Sombreros. California style burritos, bowls and salads are made at the three locations in Mesa, Scottsdale and Phoenix then delivered via GrubHub, Postmates and Door Dash.

“We’ve been working on the Carnitas Way concept for some time,” says Kurt Riske. “And while it may seem unusual to open a new restaurant in the midst of a pandemic, it’s actually great timing for this delivery only restaurant that features delicious dishes made with healthy ingredients that offer people serious value.”

Outrigger BowlCarnitas Way

Carnitas Way burritos, bowls & salads.

All menu items are under $10 and burritos can be made into bowls. All burritos and bowls include carnitas except the North Shore.

Baja – black beans, peppers, onions, cabbage, chipotle cream sauce & jack cheese.

Newport – potatoes, poblano peppers, drunken salsa & queso fresco.

Laguna– pinto beans, pico de gallo, & chipotle tomato sauce.

Kapalua – potatoes, carrots, poblano peppers, onions, roasted tomato salsa.

San Carlos – chopped mango, pico de gallo, & habanero salsa.

Outrigger – zucchini, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, pinto beans & mole verde sauce.

North Shore – Veggie

Wedge –  ntwo scrambled eggs, cajun seasoned potatoes, bacon, chipotle tomato salsa, pico de gallo & avocado.

Cancun – salsa verde & jack cheese.

Salads include…

Tamarindo Salad – cabbage, spring mix, diced onions, red pepper, roasted corn, honey lime dressing, tajin, chopped cilantro, goat cheese & fried tortilla strips.

Corn Salad

“Carnitas Way was created to make life a little easier and more enjoyable, by delivering satisfying, flavorful meals right to your door,” says Colleen Riske. “From the beach-inspired names of Carnitas Way menu items to our overall vibe, we’re excited to connect with people who appreciate the simple pleasure of a delicious meal done right.”

Orders can be placed at their website.