Yes, it’s girly – but this grab-and-go resto in Old Town Scottsdale flexes real culinary muscle.
If restaurants had genders, Sergio and Country Velador’s New Wave Market, a charming breakfast and lunch spot on Sixth Avenue in Old Town Scottsdale, would undoubtedly prefer Cosmos and cashmere to Camaros.
This tidy, light-filled space, an extension of the couple’s three-year-old bakery and sweet shop Super Chunk Sweets & Treats, exudes a modern yet faintly boutique-y vibe, its shelves artfully arranged with whimsical dinnerware and gourmet foodstuffs. It’s adorable, a point lost on the two male friends I take there on different occasions. At least they don’t miss the most important takeaway – that Old Town is now home to an affordable go-to for house-made, two-day-fermented bagels, local Peixoto coffee, yummy sandwiches, superlative Italian sodas, award-winning cookies and ice cream that will rock your world. Obviously, I love this place.
Light, puffy French toast, made with Country’s soft, brioche-like Hawaiian bread, was the elegant surprise of my first visit. Its crispy, greaseless veneer, spooned with tart-sweet blueberry balsamic jam and mascarpone whipped cream, offers up the crunch of toasted almonds and brown sugar streusel. Fabulous! Also wonderful is the ghee-fried egg, served on a sea-salt bagel with whipped chive cream cheese, lacto-fermented hot sauce, tomato and microgreens. It’s a deliciously gooey mess that reflects two red-hot food trends: Paleo-friendly ghee, India’s deeply flavored version of clarified butter, and lacto-fermented hot sauce, which preserves the depth and complexity of fresh peppers using a simple brine solution.
New Wave also makes a terrific, faintly spicy tuna sandwich, but the two sammies that really haunt my dreams are the ham and the schmaltz chicken salad. The former pairs Fra’ Mani’s Sweet Apple ham with Beehive’s Barely Buzzed cheese, a full-bodied cheddar hand-rubbed with espresso and lavender, and is finished with mixed greens tossed in tangerine oil and truffle-honey Dijon on seriously crusty house-made ciabatta. The latter involves chopped buttermilk chicken breast, tossed in dill aioli with gribenes (ultra-crispy, crackling-like chicken skins) and stacked with wine-soaked cheddar, sliced apple and arugula, then served on house-made bread that’s been quickly bathed in schmaltz (rendered chicken fat) before being toasted. My god, these are good.
Excellent salads include the Deviled Caesar (strewn with crunchy slivers of toasted everything bagel and sided with a soft-boiled egg) and Salmon and Greens, combining Chula’s smoked salmon with lightly pickled potato, dried currants, parsley, charred scallion and charred lemon, all tossed with greens in house ranch.
Wash everything down with Mexican tepache (lightly fermented pineapple juice with a touch of ginger and habanero) or the best Italian sodas you will ever have, particularly the hibiscus and coconut. Finally, ready yourself for Country Velador’s famous cookies, including the sandy-textured mesquite chocolate chip and the peanut butter (made with house-roasted peanuts). Other spectacular treats include gooey brownies flaked with sea salt and a honey cake soaked in cinnamon tres leches called the John & Yoko. Skip the plodding Vietnamese coffee panna cotta and go for a scoop of dreamy honeycomb ice cream instead.
Do you need more convincing? Just go. New Wave beats every café in Scottsdale by a Country mile.
New Wave Market
Contact: 7120 E. Sixth Ave., Scottsdale, 602-736-2383
Hours: Breakfast Tu-Sa 8 a.m.-11 a.m.; lunch Tu-Sa 11 a.m.- 5 p.m.
Highlights: Ghee-fried egg ($7); Hawaiian bread French toast ($8); schmaltz chicken salad sandwich ($9.50); ham sandwich ($8.75); Italian sodas ($4.50); brownies ($2.69); John & Yoko ($5.49); canelé ($2.49)
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