Saturday, April 18, 2015


Salt of the Hearth

PHM 500x500 FPOHow to make meats and veggies sizzle on Himalayan salt slabs.

What if we told you that you could cook just about anything on a big, pink slab of 900-degrees-hot Himalayan salt? Cooking with salt slabs is more like an art than it is cooking; the salt is absorbed into whatever is sizzling on the slab, so there’s no need for seasoning beyond a sprinkling of pepper. Intrigued? Chef Jacques Qualin of J&G Steakhouse at The Phoenician, who has been a chef in both Paris and New York, showed us everything from how to heat the slab to how to obtain the perfect salty crust on an entrée.

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Local Gift Guide 2014

PHM1214Flash-4-ShopHomogenous holiday shopping got you down? Step up your gift game with Arizona-made goods.

‘Tis the season for eggnog, fruitcake, twinkling lights, pumpkin-spice-flavored everything and trampling fellow shoppers for limited sales on mass-manufactured products at big-box stores. Eliminate the latter aspect by going local for your gifts.

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¶lim¶2014 Best New Restaurants


It’s that time of year again. Our Super Bowl of the savory. Our Emmys of the edible. Our roundup of the year’s elite new purveyors of Valley food-craft.

Warning: Perusing this article may be dangerous for your waistline.

How we picked them: Each of our PHOENIX magazine food writers compiled a Top 10 list of their favorite new restaurants in the Valley. We tallied the scores and used a weighted scale to favor the restaurants that appeared most often – and disadvantage those our writers visited, but left off their lists.

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Gentlemen, Start Your Allegros

PHM1114Flash-4-AllegrosSports and sound collide as Phoenix International Raceway and Phoenix Symphony put on a car-themed concert.

Start your engines. Rev ‘em up. Burn rubber.

When you read those phrases, do you think of fast-paced music? If so, you’re on the same aural-auto plane as composer Larry Blank, who guest-conducts the Phoenix Symphony’s “Sound of Speed” concert showcasing car-themed music on Thursday, November 6. Emceed by Dukes of Hazzard alum Tom Wopat, the concert is presented in conjunction with the 50-year anniversary of Phoenix International Raceway. NASCAR legend Rusty Wallace will guest-conduct the national anthem, and featured selections will include “Short Ride in a Fast Machine” by John Adams, orchestrations from James Bond films and an eponymous original opening arrangement by Blank. “What Larry’s going to be doing creatively is really demonstrating that collision between cars, racing and music, by incorporating sounds of cars and horns and all of that into the piece itself,” Phoenix Symphony President and CEO Jim Ward says.

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Farmers’ Market Finder

PHMPF13Peruse produce and frolic among food trucks at these open-air oases.

Autumn is finally here, and while we may not have crisp breezes and piles of crackly umber leaves underfoot, we do have a fun season-marker of our own: the return of farmers’ markets in full force, blanketing every corner of the Valley in their locally-grown, hand-picked, homespun bounty. To find the market nearest you and its fall-spring hours, consult this handy guide.

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Like a Rock

PHM1014Flash-3-RockCave Creek’s Rare Earth Gallery showcases Mother Nature’s treasure chest.

Cave Creek’s Rare Earth Gallery showcases Mother Nature’s treasure chest.
Wayne Helfand is used to the wide-eyed stares, the cautious steps, the silence broken by whispers. They’re the typical reactions of people who pop into his Rare Earth Gallery for a look around, only to have their eyes dart from sparkly stimulus to sparkly stimulus as the sheer volume of gems, geodes, jewelry, precious metals, glass art, fossils and petrified wood overtakes them.

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Warehouse District

PHM1014PF26AKA “Downtown Rebound”

BIRTH & DEATH OF INDUSTRY: The Warehouse District wasn’t really founded but evolved over time, says Dan Klocke, vice president of economic development in Downtown Phoenix. The district was integral to the Valley’s retail culture, with warehouses storing produce coming off freight trains that ran through Phoenix. The district began to lose steam as Phoenix expanded outward, but Klocke says it is evolving in a “grassroots sort of way” today, with adaptive reuse of historical buildings. LEVINE SCENE: Developer Michael Levine, owner of Levine Machine, has made adaptive reuse projects out of many warehouses in the district. THEN & NOW: The Phoenix Cotton Oil Company building, constructed in 1895, is now the site of the ASU Step Gallery. The Phoenix Merchandise Mart, constructed in 1946, is currently a Downtown Mini-Storage building. In 1918, the building at 215 E. Grant St. was home to Bell Laundry; it now houses the Bentley Gallery. IN THE ‘HOOD: Modern attractions in the District include Chase Field, US Airways Center and Alice Cooper’stown restaurant.

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