Diet-busing gourmet s’mores make a mess of things from Phoenix to Gilbert.

Marsh-ing Orders

Written by Marilyn Hawkes Category: Three Bites Issue: June 2017
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Photo by Angelina Aragon

Bitter & Twisted 
Cocktail Parlour
1 W. Jefferson St., Phoenix
There’s something so gratifying about eating s’mores. Maybe it’s the scent of burnt, oozing marshmallow, or the way you have to crunch past the crumbly graham crackers before inching toward the gooey melted layer of chocolate. For his Campfire Marshmallows ($8.50, pictured), chef Bob Tam whimsically impales the toasty white pillows on graham cracker sticks and serves them in mini glass milk bottles, with a bowl of warm chocolate ganache spiked with dry port for dipping. Eating Tam’s s’mores is a messy proposition, one that requires several napkins to wipe away the sticky marshmallow and rich chocolate sauce trickling down your chin. “There’s this primal connection to roasting marshmallows on a stick,” Tam says. “People like them for their simplicity.”
Salut Kitchen Bar
1435 E. University Dr., Tempe
Reportedly, the first mention of s’mores comes from a recipe published by the Girl Scouts in the late 1920s, as a low-overhead treat that kids could make with primitive cooking utensils around a campfire. Modern enthusiasts are known to use a gas flame, but ordering the s’mores ($10) at Salut Kitchen Bar will give you a semi-authentic fix. The server brings out a sterno-powered “fire pit” and all the ingredients for s’mores – puffy marshmallows, traditional graham crackers and squares of Hershey’s chocolate. Put a marshmallow on the provided long fork, toast the spongy round until it starts to burn, then sandwich the delicious mess between a pair of graham crackers and chocolate. Campfire optional.
384 N. Gilbert Rd., Gilbert
When Grubstak opened last December in the East Valley, operations director Seth Widdes wanted to include s’mores on the menu because of the dessert’s rising popularity in sit-down restaurants. But Widdes puts a new spin on Grubstak’s Give Me S’more ($6.75). Instead of graham crackers, he uses house-made bread pudding laden with heavy cream, eggs, vanilla, graham cracker crumbs and cinnamon. It’s deliciously reminiscent of a sweet roll. Using a sturdy slice of bread pudding as the base, Widdes piles on marshmallows and marshmallow fluff and then torches both until caramelized. To finish, he blankets the smoldering dessert with wall-to-wall fudge sauce and serves it in a metal tin. “It’s our most popular dessert by far,” he says of the upgraded campfire treat.






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