things to do
ultimate food guide
Things To Do
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Things To Do
Ultimate Food Guide
Gwen Ashley Walters
January, 2013, Page 84
FOOD & WINE EVENTS
Arizona Beer Week
Things get hoppy during Arizona Beer Week. From pub crawls to beer dinners to an all-day strong beer festival, Arizona Craft Brewers Guild makes sure there are plenty of opportunities to chug some suds. February 13-26.
Hosted by Phoenix Art Museum and Local First Arizona, this two-day food and wine event brings top restaurants, such as Hana Japanese, Citizen Public House and St. Francis, to an appreciative foodie crowd in the intimate setting of the museum’s sculpture garden. March 9 and 10, tickets $79-$150.
Heavy Metal Competition
A major annual fundraiser for Careers Through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP), this Iron Chef-like competition will pit champion Chef Lee Hillson of the Phoenician against a surprise challenger, with emcee Chef Beau MacMillan of Elements at Sanctuary calling the blow-by-blow. Three celebrity judges choose the winner, and guests are treated to a four-course dinner. March 10, $175/$225.
Arizona Barbecue Festival
Organizers for the fourth annual Arizona Barbecue Festival at Salt River Fields are switching things up. The serious ’cue competition is out, and a honky-tonk party is in, with mullet beauty pageants and watermelon seed spitting contests. One thing that isn’t changing: There will still be plenty of BBQ. May 4.
Arizona Taco Festival
Tequila and tacos go hand-in-hand at this party, entering its fourth year. Following National Taco Association guidelines modeled after the KCBS rules, local restaurants compete for cash and bragging rights. October 19-20, general admission $12.
Festival at the Farm
Presented by the Arizona Wine Growers Association, this event on the historic grounds of The Farm at South Mountain gathers the state’s top wine growers to showcase their latest wines, give presentations, and compete for annual wine awards. November 2013, tickets $75.
Cupcakes are the star at this charity event, which includes celebrity bakers and a cupcake-eating contest. Held at the Hotel Valley Ho in Scottsdale in the fall; all proceeds are donated to charity by founder Kelly Garcia of Butter & Me Bakery. 2013 date TBD, tickets $20 adults, $5 kids.
Former-lawyer-turned-cooking-school-owner Andy Broder offers hands-on classes for the novice and gourmet cook. Try your hand at paella or pasta-making or learn how to sear the perfect chicken breast and make a simple pan sauce to go with it. 7000 E. Shea Blvd., Scottsdale, 480-951-2400,
Classic Cooking Academy
Under the direction of classically trained Frenchman Pascal Dionot, the academy offers accredited professional culinary training and a serious practical skills series for the passionate home cook, including classes covering French techniques over 24 weeks. The academy also recently launched a restaurant, Test Kitchen. 10411 E. McDowell Mountain Ranch Rd., Scottsdale, 480-502-0177,
There isn’t a more charming, intimate cooking school in town than Barbara Pool Fenzl’s Les Gourmettes, entering its 30th season in 2013. For one thing, the “classroom” is in her kitchen at her grand Central Avenue home, where top local chefs and national cookbook authors give demonstrations for only 15 students at a time. 602-240-6767
Les Petites Gourmettes
Since 1994, Linda Hopkins has held summer cooking classes in her home for kids ages 8 to 17, teaching the budding gourmands everything from knife skills to how to whip up brunch. She organizes the classes by age, offering four-day classes for 8- to 12-year-olds and five-day classes for 13- to 17-year-olds. 480-991-7648,
This community educational hub offers affordable cooking and gardening classes on everything from gluten-free baking to composting to how to stock a healthy pantry. Root encourages the community to suggest classes and even to teach. On the first and third Saturdays of each month, Root offers an open house from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., featuring seminars and a plant market, deemed “food ready-to-grow.” 7120 N. 12th St., Phoenix, 602-680-7249,
Tucked into the back of a gourmet kitchen supply store is a cozy kitchen where professionally trained chefs teach a welter of hands-on and demonstration classes. Sweet Basil specializes in hands-on couples classes and one-hour "Lunch and Learn" demo classes. 10749 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale, 480-596-5628,
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